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4 Sales Tips for Attending Business Expos

May 27, 2008
Unfortunately, not everyone views expos as opportunities waiting to be found. Generally speaking, women invite a friend to Go-with and they routinely walk up and down the aisle not really investigating what there is to be offered. In contrast, the men walk the aisles stopping where they are most comfortable and able to talk peer to peer to the man behind the booth.

In both cases, the men and the women are not creatively looking for ways to expand their businesses.

Years ago, as a job hunter, I realized that expos were the all time best place to find a job. All of the company literature is laid out on the table and representative employees are there to speak to and question. It was very convenient to find everyone under one roof.

As a salesperson in corporate America attending the expos, it was once again an easy afternoon of warm calling instead of cold calling. The expo eliminated a lot of wasted time Dialing for Dollars or walking up and down the street. The most suitable companies were easily identifiable in one arena.

Similarly, entrepreneurs can find a wealth of information for their business at the expos.

Tip #1: Think Creatively.
A major difference for entrepreneurs is that creative thinking is critical for making the most of the business experience. Instead of walking up and down the aisles thinking this isnot for me, turn the thought around to, Let us find how we can possibly work together.

As an example, a divorce attorney may approach a real estate company. Many of the clients of this attorney will need to sell their homes; a long term care insurance provider might look for someone specializing in helping others care for the elderly. By seeking power partners at the expos, you will be on your way to sending referrals back and forth and building business more quickly.

Tip #2: Consider the Entire Program.
Before you register for the expo, read the entire agenda for the day. If there are interesting seminars from which you can learn, it may be advantageous to sign up for the package including meals. As long as you are spending the time, be sure to include the education piece to move your business along. And at lunch be open to meeting new people, you never know who might sit next to you.

Tip #3: Donate A Prize Related to Your Business.
Another avenue for entrepreneurs to get noticed at the expos is to donate a gift related to their business. Most attendees stay long enough to see if they have won a prize. The announcements of the prize and the winners come over the microphone and many people will hear the announcement of your name and the name of your business. It is an inexpensive method for advertising and just might net you a new client.

Your generosity will also be noticed by the leadership putting on the seminar. Call after the event to set an appointment to find if you might be able to conduct business with them in the future.

Tip #4: Follow-up.
Finally, follow-up with everyone to whom you spoke. For those with whom there may be a synergy, set up a phone call or coffee appointment; and invite everyone to subscribe to your newsletter. Everyone will be impressed with your timely follow-up. Why? It is a known fact, very few people follow-up. It will set you apart from everyone else.

Remember, if you are taking time away from working on your business, then make the most of your time working for your business by thinking creatively to expand your business.

My Story:
As I entered the San Francisco expo, I noticed a sign that indicated that vendor was an alternative business bank. I tentatively took a few steps further but turned back. I was curious by the word, Alternative, and certainly liked the word, Business.

The gentleman greeted me and I asked,If you offer alternative services to businesses, would you consider partnering to offer sales training?

Another woman was at his booth and the two of them began to laugh. It was less than two minutes previous that he confided to her, I wish I could find another service to offer our clientele!

We began the process of exploring ways in which we may work together. Had I not thought out of the box, this would not be possible.

By creatively attending conferences, in addition to training, I received a video interview, keynote speech contract, a column in Diversity Edge Magazine.
About the Author
Elinor Stutz, CEO of Smooth Sale, LLC and Author, offers sales training,coaching,speaking and a full product line.

Smooth Sale Delivers: Professional Sales Training, Licensing, Coaching, Motivational Speaking and a Full Product Line.

Elinor's book, Nice Girls DO Get The Sale,translated into multiple languages and sells worldwide.

Call 800-704-1499 or Sign up for Sales Tips ezine.
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