Helpful Tips on Choosing the Ideal Trade Show Booth Personnel

Jan 19, 2018 by

Your trade show booth is only as effective as the people who man it. Having the right personnel in your booth makes all the difference between a successful show, and a not so successful one. You can spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on your display and special effects, but when it comes down to it, basic human connection will still trump everything else. That being said, there is a difference between just anyone in your booth, and skilfully trained professionals who know exactly how to engage and interest your clients. Here are some helpful tips on choosing the ideal trade show booth personnel.

Before you begin the hiring process, having a plan and organizational structure of who you need to hire is best. The people you require might already work in your company, or you might be seeking a trained brand ambassador. Here are some of the types of roles that are common in successful booths. By following this structure of responsibilities, you will ensure your booth runs at its optimal level.

Types of Booth Personnel:

Hosts – These people specialize in welcoming and registering new visitors. They will most often stand at the front of your booth, ready to greet clients, and direct them to an area of interest, a product demonstration, or an interactive activity happening in your booth. These are your company’s brand ambassadors and the first people your clients have contact with. Ensuring they are equipped with the correct promotional material and samples is the best way to engage your audience.

Presenters – These people are skilled public speakers, and often are hired to give live in-booth presentations or demonstrations. Engaging, enthusiastic, and lively, presenters should know an in-depth level of knowledge about your products and business, and should be able to deliver this in an entertaining and educational way.

Crowd Gatherers – These people work outside of your booth. They are often found in the aisles and surrounding areas of your booth, attempting to entice show walkers to come check out your booth. They should also be equipped with promotional material, samples, or food items to giveaway.

Lead Gathering and Sales Staff – These people are skilled sales professionals who know how to close a sale. They can expertly pitch your products, answer questions, and know how to collect lead data on your most qualified prospects.

Mistakes to Avoid:

To ensure your hard work doesn’t go to waste, keep these mistakes in mind to ensure you avoid making them. Your trade show will run smoothly and successfully if you pre-plan and follow these guidelines.

No Overarching Goal – Ensuring you have an achievable goal in mind and one that is clearly defined will be your path to success. Once you have your goal outlined, make sure to share it with your booth personnel. Everyone should be on the same page when it comes to the bigger picture of your tradeshow. When your staff is aligned with your projections, there is little room for confusion or lazy attitudes. Not having a defined goal not only confuses your staff, but makes the entire show run more chaotically than it should.

Undefined Marketing Plan – You’ve spent a lot of money on your display, the media units, and your marketing material. Not having a detailed plan on who is going to man what station, and what pitch they are going to use could end in utter disaster. The last thing you want to do is give different clients different messages, and have them walking away confused and disinterested. Your staff should be briefed on what is expected of them, and how the show is going to be run. Having assigned roles, as discussed above will give them a better idea of their purpose and responsibility, and they will be better able to execute the marketing plan.

Failure to Motivate – Just because you’ve hired someone for your trade show, doesn’t mean they will self-motivate. Your staff needs direction, encouragement, and celebrations when they’ve done a good job. Before the show, during it, and after, make sure you take the time to properly encourage, and entice your staff. Not only will they work harder to meet their goals, but they will have more fun and a positive attitude throughout. Your clients will be able to pick up on their energy, and if they are vibrating at a high level, your audience will feel it, and appropriately respond.

Some other tips to include when choosing your ideal trade show booth personnel include:

  • Choosing people who actually want to attend – if you are picking internal employees, go with the ones who are eager to attend, and who are experienced enough to handle it. They’ll have a genuinely good time, and it will result in a successful show.
  • Provide incentives – everyone loves an incentive to work towards. Give your employees some sort of reward or incentive for reaching a particular goal, and watch how fast they self-motivate.
  • Equip your booth with plenty of information – not only should your staff be well-trained on the products and details of your company, but having literature and pamphlets around the booth and on signs will help your staff feel more secure. If the booth becomes overcrowded and your personnel are all with people, the attendees waiting can spend their time reading and learning about products on their own, giving your staff ample time to devote to clients already interested, without them feeling pressured for time.
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