by Jennifer Barham
Summer’s here and the living is, well, not really easy (as the song goes), but there’s lots to look forward to. And after last year’s “Cruel, Cruel Summer,” we can all look forward to a little more lightness and a little more celebration and a little more fun in the sun.
In that vein, I was putting together a summer playlist and some of the songs just reminded me of some very cool trade show tips. So, here’s my breezy take on summer songs and trade show vibes.
"RIDIN' IN MY CAR" Maybe you aren’t flying to events this year because of protocols or costs or other reasons, so make sure your car is in top notch shape. Whether it’s just you in there or you have passengers who are staffers or clients, you want it to be clean and comfortable (and to have a great playlist!)
"ITSY BITSY TEENIE WEENIE YELLOW POLKA DOT BIKINI" Hopefully no one’s wearing this at your event. Bikinis are for beaches. Polka dots and yellow, are totally fun and acceptable. However, it’s a good reminder to be AWARE of what you and your staffers are wearing. Are you following good business protocol for your industry? Are you showing up to your booth with clean, wrinkle-free, attractive clothing and shoes?
"GOOD VIBRATIONS" As the song goes, “I’m picking up good vibrations.” Also make sure you’re putting out good vibrations. A big smile, a friendly hello, a welcome to your booth all go a long way toward making an impression and building a cheerful atmosphere for the climate of your booth
"WIPEOUT" Not only should you have your wipes out for customers and staffers (see what I did there?), you should make sure that you don’t have any personal or booth wipeouts by being prepared for the unforeseen. Do you have chargers and backups and tape and all that stuff that causes a crisis if you DON’T have it? (I’m looking at you, extra batteries.)
"ISLAND IN THE SUN" I had to throw some Weezer in here. And of course, no one wants an island in the sun for their trade show booth. Or "Islands in the Stream" either, for that matter. Ha! But have you considered an island exhibit?! They’re awesome and impactful, and Skyline Exhibitor Source can help you to stand out above the rest!
"SUDDENLY LAST SUMMER" Ugh. Let’s not go there
"HOT STUFF" Don’t let your new products get swallowed up with the rest of your display. Don’t diminish the special services you offer. If you’ve got something new or revolutionary or a special you want to showcase, put it out there. People love something new, they love a deal, they love the hot stuff!
"IT TAKES TWO TO MAKE A THING GO RIGHT" Rob Base and DJ E-Z Rock knew what they were rapping about, and while they weren’t necessarily singing about customer relations, they aren’t wrong. Staffers need attendees, and attendees need staffers. Remember your job, and do it well. You’re aren’t at convention for YOU; you’re there for your prospects and clients.
"NIGHT MOVES" Don’t forget about the evenings while you’re planning your trade show details. Planning a mixer for clients or a special dinner for a very special client makes a difference in business building. Even something fun in the evening like a trivia night draws interest and crowds and helps you build your brand
"DANCING IN THE STREET" I don’t know about your town, but my town has rolled out all kinds of outdoor venue special events – live music, movies under the stars, art shows on the greenway – to provide fun safely for residents. Look at the cities hosting your trade shows to see if there’s something fun or interesting your staffers could attend on the last night of the event.
"VACATION" Take some advice from The Go-Go's and take a breather after your big event. And while all those leads and calls and emails are waiting to be handled, and those bags and boxes are waiting to be unpacked, you can reward yourself for a job well done by doing something fun with family or friends or by yourself. A special meal, a fun show, even a really long good night’s sleep are a welcome vacation from the hustle and grind of the trade show. You deserve it!
Photo by Ibrahim Rifath