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Using a tradeshow to your advantage

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Greg Panas
Using a tradeshow to your advantage
on Aug 6, 2009 at 5:20:24 pm

What are the best ways to use a trade show to your advantage and gain new business. I've contemplated over giving away demo reels but will they make it into a potential clients dvd player? What about using the internet for your demo reel and giving potential clients flyers pointing to the internet? Just curious as to what some thoughts are and potentially the most efficient way to approach this.

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Mike Cohen
Re: Using a tradeshow to your advantage
on Aug 6, 2009 at 5:35:39 pm

What is your business? Video Production?
What sort of tradeshow would you go to?

We go to a lot of tradeshows, but we have books and DVDs we sell, so the tradeshow is a good way to distribute catalogs, make some sales and do a lot of networking. But not cheap. It has to be considered a marketing expense, not a way to make guaranteed sales.

But if you are promoting a service that is a much tougher sell.
Here is a thread we had on this forum a little while back:

Mike Cohen

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Greg Panas
Re: Using a tradeshow to your advantage
on Aug 6, 2009 at 5:59:04 pm

I have a video production company and I was thinking about using it more to promote a service. I wouldn't have a booth set up i was thinking to generally go above and beyond the normal "networking". Especially in tough times trying to be creative and go out find work hard to find new business i was trying to figure out the best way to promote our services. Any input or advice would be greatly appreciated.

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Steve Kownacki
Re: Using a tradeshow to your advantage
on Aug 7, 2009 at 12:23:05 pm

Be careful marketing/selling at shows where you haven't paid for a booth. Just handing out cards is sales enough to get you kicked out and you don't want that kind of reputation.

Will any of your clients be at the show displaying videos you created? Ask about putting your info on their table and trade them a handful of DVDs.


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Franklin McMahon
Re: Using a tradeshow to your advantage
on Aug 6, 2009 at 7:07:16 pm

Plan a party.

I do a lot of events, both my own networking functions and events connecting into existing events in my city.

Approach an existing trade show, smaller ones at first, and connect with the team doing it. Pitch an after party, martini hour or something that happens on site or off-site after. Offer to spearhead it. Then find a location, most pubs, bars and halls will welcome a group of people coming in and spending money on a cash bar.

When I moved to Portland many years ago, I went around trying to network and trying to find niche groups. I ended up creating my own groups, people coming to me. And I have been doing this for years. It's fun and it's social and has gained me many many connections over the years. Envision a scenario and create it, as opposed to trying to find it. Being the host will give you a lot of promotion and leverage as a mover and shaker.


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