Business to business trade shows are a great way of generating leads and sales. You cannot beat the value of meeting people face to face and discussing their business requirements. If you sell products it is a great way of showing people their quality and how they function. The reason we are taking you through these tips is because many people we speak to inform us they leave things too last minute, or ‘don’t have time’ to follow up. Why spend so much money on attending an event only to half-heartedly follow through with it? Some events can cost thousands of pounds!

It is very important to pre-plan and start work on your event from before it even starts to right after it has finished. Failing to do these things below could be losing you lots of time and money!

The advice we are offering applies to all types of businesses that attend trade events pitching their product or services. The footfall at these events can be huge! Including all types of prospects from office admins right up to managing directors and CEOs.

In this post we will be explaining why it is important to carefully plan your business shows and explain how to maximise your sales from the event while providing 8 top tips if you’re new to exhibiting at business showcases.

How to Maximise Your Sales From Business to Business Exhibitions.

1. Pre planning

Fail to prepare, prepare to fail. As cheesy as it sounds it really is that simple. As soon as you know you will be attending a business fair you need to be thinking how you are going to approach the event. There are so many details to fine tune in the run up to and during the event. Write a clear list of tasks that your team can assist with prior to the event. This could look like this.

Showcase Checklist

  • Confirm the size of your stand

  • Do we need power/tables?

  • Check which of your team will be attending

  • Do they need overnight accommodation?

  • Team focus for the event ie a product or new service?

  • Do we have handouts?

  • Business cards, Giveaways, Refreshments maybe?

  • Is any uniform required for the event to make sure staff look smart?

  • Backdrop or roll-up banners?

  • Check other exhibitors that are attending is it worth connecting with them prior to the event?

  • Promote the event to our clients/followers

2. Research

Make sure you research the event. Is it worth attending the year before to get a feel for its size and who else might be there? Do you know the number of people they are expecting?

Little things like knowing if there is free onsite parking really helps you sell the event to your clients. Once you have done your research you can put info together to send to your prospects/clients about where and when the event is being held.

3. Arrive early

Don’t be Make sure you arrive at the event in plenty of time. Even better, attend the day before and setup your stand. There are bound to be things you forgot so being there before and setting out your stall is a good test for checking last minute details. Assuming you can setup the day before it takes stress off you on the day of the event meaning you can focus on selling your company rather than fighting with backdrops while people wander round the event. Being there early might also give you a chance to walk around and introduce yourself to your neighbours.

4. Be approachable

Have you ever walked around a business exhibition to find someone tapping away on their phone blissfully unaware you are looking at their stand? You might want more info about their company, you might have questions about their products. Seeing that initial lack of interest is a huge turn off for buyers and is a massive no no! Being approachable on your trade stand is a massive must if you want to engage with prospects walking by. Having some low-cost giveaways strategically placed on your stand can bring people in.

5. Visit other stallholders

Why stop at just attendees? You are reading this blog because you want to maximise your ROI correct? So what is to stop you visiting the other business attending the event and introducing yourself, perhaps inviting them over to your stand for a chat or a light refreshment? Remember the business shows can be long days of standing on your feet all day, other attendees might appreciate a sit down and a coffee which you never know, could be another sale!

6. Request customer data

Now this can depend on the type of show you are exhibiting at but some will have a detailed list of the stall holders and attendees of the event. Some might hand over this info some might charge for it but it can be very valuable just in case you missed anyone on the day.

7. Say thank you!

Manners cost nothing, eh? But what I really mean by saying thank you is you need to remember that your attendees will be meeting possible hundreds of new people in a short space of time. The best way to make sure they remember you? Photograph your stall, Wait a few days till the event is over and send an email out to all those who left their business cards and just say thank you for  visiting us, any enquiries or orders are being dealt with and leave it at that. It just keeps you fresh in their memories and the photo really helps them place the name to the face and business.

8. Follow up

You must must MUST follow up. You might have gathered hundreds of warm leads on the day, Prioritise those that were urgent enquiries and contact the rest shortly after. Making notes at the event is key to making sure you do not forget any vital info. For instance did they want a quote? Was there a specific product they liked or have they had issues with another supplier that you could eradicate? You can flick through these notes post-event and send personal emails making sure people know you are there and perhaps even introducing a special offer or something that might interest them into making a purchase.

If you tick all of the above it should be pretty plain sailing and the orders should come flowing in. 

#8 Tips and Reminders for Maximising Sales at Business Events

  1. Pre plan your stand

  2. Research the event

  3. Arrive early to setup you stand

  4. Be approachable on the day

  5. Visit other stallholders

  6. Request customer data from the organisers

  7. Say thank you!

  8. Follow up

To wrap up

Not all of the above points will be achievable by one person depending on the scale of your business or trade show. Delegating the tasks brings the team together and means you all play a part in succeeding at your event. Following up really does play a massive part in trade shows. Although I placed it last on the list, in order of events, really it should be top!

Need more help?

We supply branded clothing and promotional items featuring your company logo to get you noticed and help boost sales. Handing out branded promotional merchandise is proven to help prospects remember your name after events have passed. Whether it is a printed pen, a coaster, mug or even a mint? All of these items get taken away and kept hold of over your average business card.

For expert advice on all things like this contact our team today.

0114 398 9454 or email