plan in advance and communicate that plan.
One of the biggest mistakes I see on the show floor that leads to frustration, delays and additional charges, is the lack of information that exhibitors bring with them to the show. There’s always “someone in the office’ who did this or was supposed to have done that. And the expectation some times is that the service contractors on site are just supposed to have known the answer for them. Or they just need to do what is requested and they can “bill the office” because the stressed out exhibitor is just a contractor or doesn’t have a company card or just doesn’t want to pay the onsite prices for an order that wasn’t received. In the meantime, people get frustrated or upset or create unnecessary waiting for others trying to solve their problem.
Situations like these can easily be avoided days or weeks in advance, if you have a plan to handle your trade show operations. And it is much less stressful for all, if that attention to detail is a standard part of your exhibiting plan!
It culminates in a simple folder that the exhibitor should have on site that has the details of conversations and orders that were not only “ordered’ but more importantly, “confirmed’. It is a complete docket, either physical or digital that has everything from flight and hotel information, to the badges that were ordered, rentals organized and most importantly logistics of your booth materials, both inbound and outbound.
It is important as well to prearrange those needs. First of all it is less expensive to be organized in advance and secondly, things won’t fall through the cracks. Filling out the wrong paperwork in a hurry on site, can lead to heavy charges or misdirected freight that is a huge hassle to track down.
So as with most things in life, having a plan figured out in advance only makes sense and it gives you peace of mind when every minute of your limited time at a show should be spent productively selling your brand, not haggling with the service providers who don’t know where your shipment or rental is without paperwork to help you.
So to recap,
1. Pre order everything
2. Use the official suppliers as much as you can so there is representation on site, if you need it
3. Make sure your site person has copies of everything that has been prearranged
4. Enjoy the show and maximize your time there doing what you are there for!