Attendees at trade shows would rather chat with marketing and sales staff as opposed to managers.

A study released by the Center for Exhibition Industry Research (CEIR) says 56 percent of trade-show visitors prefer meeting with salespeople. It was published in an October 2012 Exhibition World article.

It indicates 30 percent of exhibitors assign marketing and sales personnel compared to 27 percent that show up with management.

A key trait preferred by 94 percent of attendees: Product knowledge.

Fifty percent of visitors would like to meet with exhibitors’ researchers and developers.

But only 3 percent of exhibitors do so.

So are companies missing a chance to garner customer feedback for new product ideas?

Yes, says the study.

“Attendees regard exhibit staff as the face of the company,” Exhibition World quoted CEIR research director Nancy Drapeau. “It is their chance to engage face-to-face with the people behind an organization and brand.”

She reiterated the necessity to respond to attendee preferences.

“This human interaction gives exhibitors the unique chance to make a powerful connection that can translate into new business for their long-term success; therefore, having staff with the right job functions, level of experience and demeanor is key to positioning an exhibiting organization for success,” she added.

… 56 percent of trade-show visitors prefer meeting with salespeople.

For the most part, the study’s conclusions make sense. But I’d be careful about allowing interaction of attendees with your researchers and developers. You don’t want employees who are not used to dealing with customers to inadvertently share trade secrets.

From the Coach’s Corner, recommended sales reading:

8 Strategies for Trade Show Success – Trade shows are an excellent vehicle to scale your business. If managed correctly, they’re cost-effective and provide you valuable face time with a targeted audience.

Want More Business? Build Trust with Consumers…Here’s How — With consumers trying to cope with information overload – you will increase B2C sales with long-term customer loyalty – if you build trust by using best practices. It may be an obvious approach, but it’s confirmed by a study that shows 84 percent of the respondents declared trust must be warranted before they buy.

Sales Strategy When Tempted to Bad Mouth Competitors — Imagine you’re making a presentation and you feel pressure to make the sale. Suddenly you’re asked about your competition. Bad mouthing competition is not a viable option.

Strategies, Precautions When Expanding into a New Market — So you see opportunities by expanding into a new market. Whether you’re expanding across town or into a different region, there are risks to anticipate in alleviating any uncertainty. Even it doesn’t seem risky, due diligence is required and certain precautions are imperative for success.

Elevate Sales via 5 Best Practices in Pricing and HR Training — Sophistication in pricing by salespeople is an excellent driver to grow earnings rather than just looking for ways to cut costs. Instead of growing their profits with sophistication in pricing, many businesspeople miss growth opportunities when they mistakenly cut muscle – usually in human capital and branding. Here’s a better way.

“Every great business is built on friendship.”
-JC Penney


Author Terry Corbell has written innumerable online business-enhancement articles, and is a business-performance consultant and profit professional. Click here to see his management services. For a complimentary chat about your business situation or to schedule him as a speaker, consultant or author, please contact Terry.

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