Trade shows are always such a whirlwind event. You walk miles each day, shuffling from exhibitors to exhibitor in search of new and innovative product, purchase orders, and connections. In many industries, trade shows are a must-attend event. So, how exactly do you maximize your experience there? Here are some takeaways from the TopTenWholesale.com team.
Tie up loose ends. Whether you are an attendee or exhibitor, tie up loose ends at work beforehand. Make sure someone is keeping the day-to-day processes running when you’re gone. Just because you’re at the show doesn’t mean the world goes on pause!
Map it out. Find out the best route to the show or if there is a shuttle provided by your hotel. Sounds simple, but it’s imperative. When the Starbucks line is absurd, hanger slowly will take over your body and halt all cognitive functions. Then you’ll wish you had a plan.
Research the show. If possible, find a list of exhibitors, seminars, etc. Determine your “musts.” It can get overwhelming when you arrive at the show and don’t know where to start.
Dress for success. At ASD, people wore everything from jeans and a t-shirt to a full business suit. Business casual is always a safe bet, but be mindful of your industry. It can get cold so bring a jacket and don’t forget shoes you can walk in. Hot tip, cool shoes can be the best conversation starter.
Make sure you have enough business cards. Asking for someone’s business card is standard practice, be prepared. Order them ahead of time to ensure the proper quantity.
Don’t give away your last one. Hey Mr. Popular, don’t give away your last business card. Have potential clients take pictures of your card and make sure to get theirs.
Always have a pen. Take notes on the back of each business card you receive. Write down a something to help you remember them, along with any minimums and price estimates they gave you.
Get Matched. One of the best tips we can impart to you dear reader is to skip going to the factories. Instead, check out a wholesaler who will match you for free with verified suppliers and manufacturers. With TopTenWholesale.com and Manufacturer.com, the hard work has already been done for you.
Trade show season has officially begun! Check us out in Toronto next for Apparel Textile Sourcing Canada August 20th-22nd. If you want to join us, register for free here.