Tips for Exhibitors – What NOT to do at Trade Shows

We hope you had a chance to read our previous exhibitor tips on what to do for a successful trade show or event. Today we’d like to talk about things you should NOT do at a trade show or event that you are exhibiting at.

What NOT to do at Trade Shows… 

1. Do NOT ignore your customers
You don’t want to do ANYTHING that makes it appear like you may be ignoring your customers. Talking in a small closed off circle with your fellow employees or taking long phone calls makes other trade show attendees think:

  • You have too many staffers assigned to your booth.
  • Traffic isn’t coming to your booth because you don’t have anything good to offer.
  • You’d rather chat with people in the booth or on your phone than with them.


The reason you’re at the event is to build relationships with potential customers – Not to spend all your time on the phone or socialize with the coworkers that you see every day!

2. Do NOT arrive late – or leave the show early
Your company spends a lot of money for you to exhibit at a trade show and you want to get the most out of it that you can. Set-up time before the start of the show is the perfect time to not only make sure that your booth is set correctly, but also allows you to walk the show floor, see what your competitors are doing, and talk to other people who are there early, who may be interested in your product or brand.


Staying after the event ends has similar advantages. You can talk to others who stayed late, without as many distractions. Talk to other exhibitors about how they think the show went. You can also teach them about your company and even bring up the idea of your two companies working together!

3. Do NOT bring your entire team
You don’t need more than a few people to exhibit at your booth. And for smaller shows, you may need only one or two. Only send Sr. Management or Product Experts who can talk about your message or display. Also make sure that the people you choose to exhibit are friendly and can easily engage with others. Train your booth staff about what your message is, what goals you want to achieve, and what each person’s role is.



…What not to do at AFTER the show?

Do NOT forget to follow up: The worst thing you can do is to acquire leads and never follow up with them! Contact the people you spoke to in order to continue to build your relationship with them.

Do NOT forget measure your ROI: Your Return on Investment is important for deciding if you should go back to the show again. If you don’t measure ROI, you won’t know what works. And if you don’t know that, you’re risking failure at the next event you attend. In this previous blog post, we discuss how to measure ROI effectively.

See how Expand can help with your trade show needs >> 

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