Magazine article Business Credit

How to Get the Most out of a Trade Show

Magazine article Business Credit

How to Get the Most out of a Trade Show

Article excerpt

pfofessional at Work

Trade shows are a time when one can view and compare the latest technology all under one roof, upgrade employees' education through seminars and network with others in the industry in a non-competitive environment.

Some people like trade shows so much they attend them every year. And why not? Trade shows are a time when one can view and compare the latest technology all under one roof, upgrade employees' education through seminars and network with others in the industry in a non-competitive environment. For these reasons, trade shows become a good return on investment for many companies.

Trade show veterans approach the programs with a certain strategy. Here's what you can learn from them:

* Scan the trade show floor to see what's being offered, ask lots of questions, gather literature and review findings with other staff to determine what would be the best decision if the company is ready to purchase an item.

* Purchasing at a trade show has an advantage over making decisions by reviewing literature sent through the mail or by having to gather information by flying all over the country to view equipment and products, especially if your company intends to upgrade or make new purchases within six months. However, avoid knee-jerk decisions based on the awesome presentation of a show. For some, it may be a better time to window shop and make decisions after the show.

* Obtain preliminary information on what vendors will be attending and what they will be offering. Visit individual booths in which you are interested for an initial evaluation process.

*Consider sending as many employees as your company can afford, as well as underwriting the cost of bringing families along. For some companies, trade shows are viewed as morale boosters, which increase the bottom line. It also gets employees to view the industry as a whole and not limit themselves to thinking "inside the box." But make sure the group breaks up at the trade show to cover as many areas and network with as many people as possible.

* Make a "wish list" of purchases based on industry trends and what customers have been demanding but your company has been unable to provide, especially if such a purchase will give your company a competitive edge. …

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