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RFID Journal Blog
The Biggest Mistakes Exhibitors Make
Here are five common errors to avoid, to help ensure that you have a successful and productive experience at LIVE! 2014.
I have been hosting our RFID Journal LIVE! conference and exhibition for 12 years now. During that time, I have seen some exhibitors attract hundreds of potential customers to their booths, while many others have attracted only a few. Here are some mistakes that exhibitors make, which I hope you will avoid if your company is exhibiting at this year's event.
1. Not using RFID Connect to reach out to potential customers
Most RFID solution providers do not advertise, so attendees seeking products don't know what they do, and thus have no reason to stop by their particular booth. During the past few years, we have introduced several new features at LIVE! to help attendees find the exhibitors offering the products and services they need, including speed networking, product showcases and the RFID Connect smartphone application (see RFID Journal Releases RFID Connect Smartphone App). The app allows attendees to highlight booths on the exhibit hall map that offer specific products—passive ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) tags, for example, or real-time location system (RTLS) technology—or that have solutions for particular industries, such as health care or retail.
Even with these features, it is a mistake for exhibitors to passively wait for potential customers to find them. They should reach out proactively to attendees from manufacturing companies if they have solutions for manufacturing firms.
2. Turning potential customers away with bad body language
3. Having a poorly designed booth that fails to inform visitors about the products or services a company offers
4. Not getting out of the booth and networking
5. Not offering a white paper or other collateral to entice potential customers to your booth
I would also add that many exhibitors do a poor job of following up with attendees. I know this because I stop by at booths and hand out business cards. A few weeks after the event, I often receive boilerplate e-mails thanking me for stopping by and inviting me to contact the company to learn more. That's the best you can do? Really?
A far more effective approach would be to take notes about the business problem that a potential customer has, and then follow up with a call from an informed salesperson who can explain how your products or services can help solve that potential customer's problems, or help improve its operations.
There are a relatively small number of companies actively researching RFID solutions. RFID Journal LIVE! attracts those most likely to deploy the technology during the next year or two, so it provides your best opportunity to win new business. It is important to invest the time and effort to court potential customers. Those that do so will be rewarded with new business. Those that do not? Well, let's just say they are dependent on good fortune smiling upon them.
Mark Roberti is the founder and editor of RFID Journal. If you would like to comment on this article, click on the link below. To read more of Mark's opinions, visit the RFID Journal Blog, the Editor's Note archive or RFID Connect.
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