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44 Things A Booth Staffer Does

January 24, 2013

By Mike Thimmesch 

One summer during college I had a job as a busboy at The Old Ebbitt Grill, just around the corner from The White House. The best piece of advice given was that a busboy had to be like a shark, and never stop moving. That same advice works wonders for a trade show booth staffer.

Your best booth staffers have a strong work ethic, a wide variety of skills, and Gumby-like flexibility.  Booth staffers are more than eye candy at the edge of the booth; they are the epitome of multi-taskers.

Here are 44 things booth staffers can do, in your booth and throughout the show:

1. Set up your trade show displays

2. Take leads

3. Be a brand ambassador

4. Advance the buying cycle

5. Engage attendees in the aisle

6. Establish relationships with prospects

7. Qualify leads to establish needs

8. Present how their company can solve a prospect’s specific needs

9. Overcome objections

10. Record each prospect interaction

11. Give presentations

12. Demonstrate products

13. Introduce your new products

14. Answer technical questions

15. Recruit potential employees

16. Gather competitive intelligence

17. Gather market research

18. Give interviews to industry press

19. Meet with potential suppliers

20. Forge new business alliances

21. Network with industry peers

22. Attend keynote and seminar sessions

23. Dine with clients, prospects, and business partners at breakfast, lunch, and dinner

24. Attend hospitality events

25. Host hospitality events

26. De-clutter the trade show display of accumulated cups, empty water bottles, scatter literature, and other trash

27. Spot-clean the booth surfaces and flooring

28. Enter leads into the database

29. Fix or find fixers for technical glitches with computers or internet connections

30. Sort leads by quality and pass on hot leads right away

31. Restock promotional items, literature shelves, business cards and candy bowls

32. Unwrap giveaways (or wrap with company branded paper)

33. Serve food and drink to prospects

34. Meet with existing clients

35. Refill lead form print pads and staplers

36. Take a break to recharge

37. Walk the show floor and take the pulse of the industry

38. Help rookie staffers learn faster

39. Ask veteran staffers how to succeed

40. Share with management their insights on what’s on the mind of the attendee

41. Share with management what went well and how to further improve the company’s trade show performance

42. Dismantle the trade show exhibit

43. Ensure the crates come back

44. Ensure the exhibit ships with the right shipper to the right place

That’s a lot for booth staffers to do, and rare is the person who can do it all. The first sign of civilization was the division of labor, so do the civilized thing and give your booth staffers the jobs they do best. For example, it’s almost certain that your top management prefers to meet with business partners rather than refill lead pads.

Choose your booth staffers who will both take full advantage of the many valuable business activities possible at a trade show, and will roll up their sleeves and smilingly complete even the most unglamorous tasks.

And never stop moving.



Get this free book containing 34 articles, half geared to increasing skills and perspectives of individual booth staffers, and half for the trade show manager who must prepare the booth staff for their company.