Supplementing your exhibit staff with charismatic, energetic, and educated trade show pros may be a realistic option and perhaps has never been more important now that trade shows are a thing again. As we are beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel, companies are posed with the problem of travel and budget restrictions, or hesitancy by some to get on a plane and work a trade show. Utilizing the talents of highly specialized and experienced trade show professionals may be just the bridge required to ensure your booth continues to offer exemplary customer service and education about product offerings, even if you are sending a limited staff of your own. Here are a few reasons that brands may be hesitant to send a full exhibit staff, even though in-person events are coming back:
Although travel restrictions appear to be slowly lifting, companies may still limit the number of staff traveling to shows. Restricted budgets mean companies must allocate more wisely and account for every dollar. This potentially leaves a huge gap in making sure attendees are given the attention they deserve and a fair education about your products.
Hesitancy About Contracting COVID
Lifting restrictions, and increased vaccine requirements are fueling optimism about engaging in live events. However, there will still be resistance by some to participate in trade shows for a while.
Covid Liability Concerns
Most companies have at least explored the issue of being held liable if an employee contracts COVID-19 while traveling for and staffing an exhibit.
Pro tip: TPG requires that all our representatives sign a Liability Waiver. And, since they are not your company employees, it should give you peace of mind.
Some Salespeople Want to Sell from Home
After more than two years of less travel, salespeople may feel more effective continuing to sell from home or their local turf. Some may feel working the booth takes them away from their normal groove. Having said that…
Pro tip: Where else can you meet hundreds of people under one roof who may be attending an event to see the latest and greatest products and services you have to offer – leading to a sale you might not have had otherwise? Just saying.
Hired Hands to the Rescue!
What to do? If you’re looking to make a big impact at your next trade show, or you have limited resources and staff, it’s time to bring in the professionals. A team of trade show “talent” can help you stand out from the competition and create a lasting impression on attendees. Here are seven reasons you may want to consider going this route at your next in-person event.
1. You’ll Save on Travel Expenses by Hiring Locally Based Talent.
As event managers know, travel expenses take up a sizeable portion of a typical trade show budget. If what you need are friendly faces to engage attendees, invite them into the booth, introduce them to the appropriate representative, maintain the appearance of your exhibit and basically help in any activity, you may not need an all-hands-on-deck approach of bringing tons of your own people to staff your booth. Energetic hired hands have great attitudes for any task required and they’ll be 100 percent focused on the success of your show.
Pro tip: TPG can augment event staff in any city in the U.S. and even internationally.
2. Trade Show Talent Can Learn about Your Products and Services.
Outside booth staff are much more than pretty (or handsome) faces these days. Companies want a trade show team to completely embody the brand and articulate brand culture and attributes. For instance, when we assist our clients with booth staff, we conduct extensive pre-show consultation on product knowledge, and booth strategy. While you may not be sending as many of your own team, top-notch trade show pros possess a friendly, trade show savvy communication style and enough product knowledge so they can talk intelligently about your company and what you’re promoting in your exhibit.
3. Trade Show Pros Know How to Capture Attention!
Trade show pros, specifically brand ambassadors, are adept at meeting and greeting attendees, and drawing attention to your booth – helping your brand stand out from the myriad of other exhibits. An added benefit to supplementing your own staff is that these energetic pros have the requisite skills to engage attendees in a warm and unthreatening manner. They often become the face of the company in your exhibit – creating a great first impression by embodying the company corporate culture, demeanor, and spirit.
4. Never Miss a Lead
While your company staff is busy speaking with prospects or customers, brand ambassadors or greeters can be engaging visitors, scanning, and qualifying leads. Or gathering custom survey results from attendees. The beauty is that these pros are assertive, yet friendly and very approachable.
5. They Learn Who’s Who in Your Booth and Link the Visitor to the Appropriate Company Staff
Make sure your attendees are not walking around aimlessly in your exhibit. Hired hands to the rescue by approaching these wandering souls, discovering their needs, then making introductions to the right company expert.
6. They Guide Prospects to Areas of Interest in Your Booth
Are you planning presentations, demos, gamification, or a product launch? Trade show talent will determine what visitors are interested in and escort them to the appropriate area and generally educate booth visitors on all the areas and happenings.
7. They Can Provide Valuable Insights and Feedback About Your Trade Show Strategy.
A top-notch group of trade show pros can report back about what worked well in your booth, what could use improvement and even interesting and creative ideas to use at future shows. Many of our ambassadors and project managers provide detailed post-show reports complete with lead numbers, and other valuable data insights.
For nearly 30 years we’ve been filling the booth staffing gap for our trade show clients by assisting them with entire trade show teams. We can assist you in all areas of staffing by providing brand ambassadors, crowd gatherers, greeters, presenters, product specialists, infotainers, project managers, talent coordinators and install & dismantle personnel.
Should you bring in the hired hands? It’s something to consider. Face-to-face events, such as trade shows, provide sales and networking opportunities not easily duplicated by any other marketing method. That’s why 94 percent of exhibitors are planning for the return of their trade show programs. However, if you’re sending limited staff, you must consider the attendee experience and what kind of impression your company will have on customers, prospects and visitors given pared-down resources. Professional trade show talent is on the front lines of your exhibit. Once you experience the benefits of supplementing your exhibit team with these approachable professionals, you’ll want to use them time and again. Your own team will thank you, too, because they’ll see an immediate increase in booth traffic in addition to making their jobs easier! After all, you want to optimize your own team, create happy prospects who feel taken care of and generate sales down the line.
TPG has the right staff to add excitement and engagement to any event. Get in touch to learn about our terrific talent!
Related article: Beyond Booth Babes – Meet Today’s Trade Show Talent