Trade Show Marketing Checklist to Review your Trade Show Booth Now

by Chris Brown on Friday, January 25, 2013

Trade Show Marketing at the CES 2012 Do you have your another trade show coming up in the next few months? Or is this year your very first attempt at a trade show?

Whether you’re an experienced brand manager going to your 25th marketing trade show or a newbie going for the first time to your company’s industry show, pre-planning is the key to having a successful show.  Developing a game plan ahead of time can make a huge difference.

Perhaps you have a huge booth to pull together.  Maybe you’ll be using a QR tag.  Or a digital video on your chest.  Maybe you’ll just use a small retractable banner with literature.  Now is the time to pull out your booth, set it up and decide what needs to be revised.

Does your literature have an old phone number? Does your retractable banner refer to an outdated product? Can’t find one of the literature stands that you’re sure you packed away in the storage room?

Don’t wait until a few weeks before the show!  Use this handy Trade Show Marketing checklist right now as a starting point for reviewing your needs to help you have a successful trade show result. 

YOUR TRADE SHOW EXHIBIT BOOTH
__ Exhibit booth
__ Retractable banners
__ Table cloth in company colors
__ Business cards
__ Literature, brochures, price list
__ Product samples, if any
__ Pens
__ Highlighters
__ Stapler
__ Lead sheets/log book
__ Enter to Win drawing box with display sign for give away
__ Logoed golf balls, clips, flash drive or other appropriate individual give away
__ HDTV monitor cable to plug into Laptop with looping PowerPoint
__ Candy and candy dish

PERSONAL ITEMS TO TAKE TO THE SHOW
__ Comfortable shoes – most shows have a thin piece of carpet on top of concrete. You’ll be glad to have good shoes!
__ Purell hand wash – to increase your chances of staying healthy when shaking a lot of hands!
__ Facial Tissues
__ Bottled Water – stay hydrated
__ Band-Aids – dry air makes for paper cuts.
__ Energy Bars – you won’t want to be eating in the booth, but if you leave, you might miss an important contact
__ Breath Mints
__ Cell phone
__ Calendar
__ Confirmation numbers for hotel, rental car, airline
__ ID, credit cards and cash
__ Logo shirts if appropriate
__ Digital camera (don’t forget to take a photo of the booth)

REPAIR/CLEANUP – BE PREPARED FOR PROBLEMS
__ Strong duct tape – cover over that extension cord so you aren’t tripping over it
__ Sewing kit
__ Scissors or pocket knife (not carry-on)
__ Cloth or paper towels
__ Trash bags
__ Screwdrivers
__ Appropriate wrench
__ Extra fasteners (screws, nuts, etc)
__ Extra extension cord
__ Powerstrip
__ Extra light bulbs
__ Electrostatic duster with extension

MAKE RETURN SHIPPING EASY
__ Pre-printed shipping labels for return shipment
__ Packing tape
__ Instructions for return shipment

Good luck with your show!  Let me know how it went — Did you forget something that I should have listed on this tradeshow checklist??

Image courtesy Creative Commons Flickr: popculturegeek

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Gary Parsons January 27, 2013 at 9:11 am

Great information. As a company that designs and builds tradeshow exhibits for our local and multinational customers, I am always amazed at how too often exhibitors are last-minute. Commonly the person ultimately in-charge of the physical exhibit is not in charge of preparing the people attending the show for a successful presence.

The exhibitor should work closely with the exhibit builder whom has many years of experience and can guide them on the do’s and don’ts as well as the many items and tasks that are easily overlooked. After all, you talk to your mechanic about general auto care and maintenance so why not talk to your exhibit company about general show preparation.

At Archex, Display we always have discussions with our clients that extend well beyond the structural components to help them leave the show with positive results.

Tradeshows are a complicated beast and trying to go it alone is overwhelming to say the least.

Again, great article. Concise and useful.

Gary Parsons
Sales & Marketing Manager
Archex Display
gary@archex.ca

Chris Brown January 28, 2013 at 6:01 am

Gary:
Thanks for leaving a comment. The point about “start early” should really be stressed. It definitely makes a better end result. Companies aren’t forced into a decision because of the time constraint and save money by not having to pay a rush production charge or pay for more expensive faster shipping.
Chris

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