I had the very good fortune to work with Adrienne when she consulted for our medical practice. She is razor-sharp, on top of her field, connected and pulls no punches. I learned a lot in a short amount of time and Adrienne was always willing to share knowledge in whatever level of detail necessary. 

Tom Murphy, IBMC



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Trade Showmanship

by in Business Marketing
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Trade Showmanship

It’s time to start thinking about trade shows and home shows.  Only a few years ago,  home shows didn’t start until late March or early April.  Now they’re beginning in January and February.

Exhibiting at trade or home shows consists of four components.  Most companies focus on no more than two, usually one.


Part 1:  pre-Show Marketing  (this gets precious little attention)

      • What are your goals for each show?  How many appointments, how many names for your database?
      • With whom would you like to get together?  Clients who merit a dinner for myriad reasons?  Vendors?  Manufacturers with innovative products?
      • Are you trying to recruit?  How well have you defined the position(s) you’re trying to fill?

Part 2:  your Booth (here’s where people focus)

      • How much time are you allowing for preparation?  What choice location have you negotiated?
      • How enticing is your booth or table, and how well does it convey who you are?

Part 3:  Walking the Show (maybe one of your people does this; usually not)

      • Have you planned to have at least two people at your booth, so one can get food, walk around and see where the action is?  Who’s hot and who’s not?  Where’s the innovation; what’s beginning to look stale?  Here’s your opportunity to gauge first-hand what’s going on in your industry.

Part 4:  Follow-Up (a real disappointment)

      • I could have retired 15 years ago, if I had a nickel for every business owner or sales manager who’s admitted to me over the years that their post-show follow-up is either poor or non-existent.
      • When shows are back-to-back, there’s little consideration for how to follow-up quickly, then keep interested parties at bay.
      • People fail to make follow-up call schedules.  Worse, if they follow-up, they rely on email or texting.  Heaven forbid, they should use the phone.

Here’s my question:  

for what reason are you going to all the expense of participating in trade or home shows, if you’re not going to get your full dollar value?  What’s the point of the preparation and the expenses?

If your company participates in trade or home shows, it’s time to prepare a Marketing Plan for the shows where you’ve signed up to ensure you receive a real bang for every buck you invest.

 If, however, addressing the above four components is too much trouble, find a different marketing strategy.


Need some help with your Marketing Plan?

Visit www.azobleassoc.com for information on our “Do-able Marketing Plan” workbook and “10-Minute Marketing Plan” program.  You may also visit Udemy.com to sign up for our newest session on "Over 100 Ways to Grow Your Business" or our other courses,  “Easy Market Planning” and “The Best Use of your Marketing Dollars.”

And don’t forget to order our 2015 e-Schmoozing Calendar, just $17.95.  The Calendar will offer you 12 months of ideas of whom to invite for breakfast, lunch or coffee every week.  There’s a script that’s pertinent to one of each month’s schmoozing suggestions, to make those initial calls easier for you.  Our Schmoozing Calendar is a terrific bargain and a great way to embark upon face-to-face, immediately effective marketing!



Adrienne was a New Jersey public speaker and business expert for over THIRTY years. Now she’s a marketing and referral consultant. Denver and Northern Colorado have depended on her since her arrival here over 12 years ago.

Consulting and speaking to business owners and executives of growing businesses throughout the United States since 1977, Adrienne Zoble has guided companies toward marketing strategies that help them work smart, not hard.