Preparing For a Trade Show

By Ruth on November 6, 2016 in advice

Every year, professionals from all over the country will attend industry trade shows and learn more about their craft. Attending trade shows can give you valuable insights about your craft and help you to meet professionals in the industry. Before you go, it helps to understand a few tips about how to maximize your trade show experience.

Come Prepared to Talk

You will be meeting a lot of people at your trade show. Come prepared with a short elevator pitch that tells who you are and what you do. It can be a short bit about your mission, your services or your clients. The key is that it has to be short enough that you could explain it to someone while riding in an elevator, which is about 15-30 seconds. It also helps to anticipate some questions you may receive and think about your answers to them.

Bring Business Cards

Whether you are going to a trade show for cake decorators or national public adjusters, it pays to have plenty of business cards on hand. Bring more than you think you will need. You will be passing them out frequently and collecting them as well. Some booth staff may ask you to drop in your business card to join a mailing list or to win a special prize. Be sure to ask for business cards as well and follow up with the people you meet at the trade show.

Wear Comfortable Clothing

Trade shows can be a bit physically taxing. There will be a lot of walking on the trade show floor, and you may be carrying heavy bags packed with literature. You may be on your feet for more than eight hours, so wear clothing that is professional but comfortable. Many venues offer coat and bag check. Take advantage of this and scope out seating early. Some attendees bring rolling bags if they think there will be a lot of material to carry.

Give Yourself Time

Trade shows often offer workshops and breakout sessions in addition to the exhibit floor. Don’t rush the process. Give yourself time to see and do all there is to do at your trade show. Some shows span multiple days, so pace yourself and don’t try to see and do everything all at once.

Trade shows can be great opportunities for networking and professional development. By being prepared, you can make the most of your time.

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About the Author

RuthView all posts by Ruth

43-year-old single mother of an active 14-year-old girl
Born in Tacoma, WA; lives in Yelm, WA
Entertainment Writer
Available For Interviews and Reviews
Substitute Teacher


  1. Crafty Nunn November 7, 2016 Reply

    These are great ideas. Make sure you know where the bathrooms are too.
    Crafty Nunn recently posted…Finally Starting AgainMy Profile

  2. Dotty J Boucher November 7, 2016 Reply

    These are all wonderful tips and suggestions, I have to have comfy shoes, knowing me I would be standing most
    of the time,,

  3. Brian November 14, 2016 Reply

    Awesome advice! Preparing for trade shows can be rough, and many people do not come ready for how much of a toll they can be! Having business cards and comfortable clothes is a must! Thanks for sharing.

  4. John Willson April 29, 2017 Reply

    Preparing for a trade show is really very important! Nice article, thanks!

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