If you want to increase trade show booth traffic, the best thing to do is to become the talk of the town, or at least the show. The first step is knowing how to kickstart the trade show chatter. To become the talk of the show you have to get attendees talking in your trade show booth. Here’s how to be a master of trade show chatter.
What Are You Looking For?
That is the perfect question to start the right kind of conversation. It isn’t pushy. It expresses interest in the other person. It gives them permission to express themselves. As they talk you can gently guide them into the comfortable setting of your booth. Casually stroll over to the booth and use a counter top to lean forward, the perfect body language to show your interest in what they have to say.
While you’re chatting, find out as quickly as you can if you have a solution for one of their problems. After all, that’s what you’re there for, right? Your job is to sell, which means finding out if they have a problem that you can solve.
Have You Heard Of Us?
If you were listening effectively, at some point you should have connected at least one of their interests to something you offer. That is the key tidbit to latch on to. When they have finished letting you know their interests in attending the show, you hearken back to that connection. Referring to it, you can then ask the next question, “Have you heard of us? We offer just the thing you are looking for.” In mere moments and without any pressure you have captured an audience and directed them to a demonstration of your product or service from their own perspective of need.
What Are Your Own Challenges?
Don’t stop the trade show chatter there. Take it further. This creates the impression of a company that is responsive to the needs of the customer. It indicates a desire to grow and improve. It gives the trade show attendee the feeling of empowerment. By giving them the opportunity to express issues that have yet to be resolved by the industry, they feel as if they are making their own contribution to making things better. And they will connect those positive feelings with your company.
It might even turn out that your company is an expert on what they consider a challenging problem. They had just not yet discovered that you had their solution. By steering the conversation this direction you may just discover a special area of expertise to put forward and capture a neglected market.
Why Chatter Matters
Trade show chatter is the proof that people are engaging in your trade show exhibit. That is the whole point of your presence. You can’t simply take a position behind the counter and wait for interested attendees to arrive. You also don’t want to put off people with a pushy display like a medieval hawker of wares at the market or create an impression as the town crier. By approaching trade show attendees with questions about what they want, what they are interested in, what they need, you are flexing the skills of an expert conversationalist.
Signs Of Expert Conversation Skills
One would think that an expert conversationalist would be known by their ability to talk and talk and talk. In fact, the reality of what truly makes a person a master conversationalist is that they really don’t actually talk all that much. They ask questions, listen, then respond meaningfully. Entrepreneur magazine offers these tips to being brilliant in the field of professional banter:
- Know your stuff. You may be able to fool the casual conversationalist with a bit of fluff, but at a trade show you will be dealing with other professionals who know exactly what they are looking for.
- Swap perspectives. Instead of focusing on what you are selling, consider the perspective of the guests of the show. To appeal to the attendee, your marketing approach should be responsive to their perspective.
- Be prepared. There is no end to the possibilities of how a guest might respond to your pitch. Be prepared to answer demanding questions and respond to complaints.
- Stay objective. No matter how a guest responds to your pitch, focus on facts and data. Don’t take negative responses personally. Keep it professional on all levels.
Hone Your Skills
Striving to become a better communicator is a lifelong process for those who take part in trade shows. Stay on top of your trade show chatter by keeping up-to-date in the latest industry news. Trust trade show professionals who make it their business to help you stage the most successful exhibit possible.