It is not your stand that’s shite!

Well…well…well…I heard the funniest comment this last week from an exhibitor at a show who basically came out with an ‘Amway comment’

See it is far easier to apportion blame to others than to hold a mirror to ourselves. So that’s where we come in.

We work with clients who sell face to face, online, over skype, retail, expos you name it and we can help them sell better and sell more often.

The last 3 months have seen us within the exhibition circuits and it has been fun. From the NEC to regional expos…hand on heart one person stood out…in fact this one person is the only one in 12 months that has really stood out. He is a professional salesman and he learns, develops and nurtures his craft daily. DM me if you want his details as he is for hire. (John, we can discuss fees soon)

 The majority…we’ll they “blame the organisers”, “the marketing was crap”, “the show is full of tyre-kickers”, “the sandwiches were not very nice, you won’t pull a crowd with poor food” one person even said, “the lighting is not very good, is it?” Expecting me to agree and go into ‘pact agreement’ with him and his bullshit beliefs.

The one who really made me frown…said “I’ve not had a good show, to be expected though, as the stand was crap”

So here it is…the truth

And as Jack Nicholson famously said in ‘A few good men’

“You want the truth…you can’t handle the truth”

It is not that your stand that’s shite, it’s you!

This may come as a revelation to some…however let me share with you some rules when it comes to exhibiting:

1) Turning up isn’t enough – next time look around the shows and see who just ‘turns up’. Who is old enough to remember when expo stands needed ‘erecting’ and we’d go in convoy with the estate cars and back seats full to the rafters only to find that ‘Jill’ who won’t be with us till Sunday, has the attachments to hold the stand together…back down the M6 we go! Short straws anyone?

Stands these days consist of a pop up spider stand, some pop up banners a bowl of sweets and some literature/product examples…when you have done that (15 mins later) it does not mean you have finished. You have only just begun.

2) Showing up is where you need to be – So the stand is up there is an hour till the doors open, what do you do…sneak off for a ciggie, grab a coffee, flirt with some show girls (no not those kind of show girls) and maybe fluff the stand to look busy. How many of you though, get ‘yourself’ ready for the show, so you can get the best out of your show, you turning up isn’t enough because you have to ‘show up’ You need to set you intention for the show, plan your purpose for your conversations and be clear on the outcome you are looking for?

3) Set your intention – Where do we begin with this, saying I want to sell 10 things today…is possible if you sell widgets and you have the chip and pin facilities on your stand to take the cash, everything else is a relationship builder and the setting of intentions with your prospects, but it begins way before then. See for me, setting you intention is an internal thing. You must know and be very clear on what your intention is for the show. Then you can begin to ask yourself questions that help you become the person who can BE that person and DO the things that person would DO to HAVE the things that person deserves.

4) Purpose – We all do things on purpose and some still think that is a negative, believe me, if what you are doing isn’t on purpose, then stop doing it, you’re wasting everyone’s time. Set your purpose for what you are going to say and do to introduce yourself, your business, your product, set your purpose for the questions you need to ask the people who approach your stand so you can ‘spark’ their interest, set your purpose for the questions you will ask to ‘retain’ their interest…sell on purpose, you will be amazed with the results you get, as people will take you seriously…why? Because you appear a professional who knows what they are doing. What is your purpose?

5) Outcome – So many people confuse their intention and their purpose with their outcome. So many people set their outcome so far away from their starting point that it’s like trying to go from 0 – 60mph in 3 seconds in a Lada. So, set your outcome where it should be. What is right for you customer and you. If your product does not enable you to make the sale on the stand, then set your outcome on the furthest step of your sales process that the show can take you too…sorry did I lose a few of you with the ‘Sales Process’ comment, if so then boy do we need to talk!

Once you have set your outcome, you can focus on your purpose and your intention. They each feed into one another, however, if you have no outcome, then you have not set an end destination that you are heading, if you have no purpose, you are driving around aimlessly and if you have not set your intention…then you haven’t plugged the postcode into your satellite navigation system. In case you were wondering, in your brain, this is called your RAS (again, DM me and we will go through with you)

6) Know your ideal customer – ever looked for a needle in a haystack? If you are in sales or in business and you have not ‘sniper rifled’ what your ‘Ideal Customer’ looks like then it is like having Ray Charles, leading Stevie Wonder up the garden path! Research your market, who would want what you offer, who can afford what you ask, then find out where they are, what they wear, what they drive, what sex are they more likely to be, what turns them on…what turns them off, who are the influencers etc etc, sniper rifle is not blunderbuss, it is timed, accurate, controlled and more times than not…on target. Once you know this, you will be able to help customers who do not fit your profile easier, in turn helping them and in turn helping you.

7) Communication is key – It’s not what you say, it’s how you do things that matters. Handshakes, how do you tell an aggressive handshake from a submissive one? How do you correct one if you received one? How do you understand someone’s ‘buying strategy’ from watching their eye movements in response to your conversation? How do you help someone professionally buy…You do this by being in rapport with them? Learn the craft of communication and always remember, beyond mastery, is artistry.

8) The show isn’t over till the doors actually close – Hands up who remembers seeing stands one year but not the next, asking why and finding out, they packed up early last year, they’ve been banned this year! Hands up those few among us, who hanging on till the show ends has meant you have made your biggest sale in the last 15 minutes while the others have ‘started breaking down’ If you have paid for 3 days, and the 3rd day ends at 16:00, then pack up at 16:15 and make sure no sooner. Your last sale could be your best.

9) Tyre kickers do not exist – Picture the scene…”What are we doing Saturday, love?” “Why?” “I was thinking, shall we drive to Birmingham, get stuck for hours on the M6, pay a ridiculous sum to park and walk around a trade show for the day” “What for love?” Well, I thought we could give the pram and run around and it will get us out the house!” They DO NOT come to a show unless they have some interest to buy, if they don’t buy from you, I would suggest looking at your product, your placement, your pitch and your people. Don’t fall into the price argument, it’s pointless.

10) You have to ask for the sale – What would be the point of taking a lady out for a date, buying her a meal, walking her home and not asking for a kiss or leaning in for one at least…So why when you have put all the effort in would you not go the 10% needed to ask for the sale. You have done the 90%, the hard work and the person is ready…stop, shut up, breath and ask for the sale? Keep it simple, make it real and sincere.

11) Finally, sell past the sale – If you miss the Olympics when they are on, you must be living in a cave. Cast your mind back to the 100 metres final…when did the guys stop running…80 metres, 90 metres, 100 metres…no of course not, they were still flat out at 110 metres to ensure they beat their personal best at the 100-metre point. When you have a customer at the point of buying, show him the enjoyment that comes from the purchase, share the future pleasures and help him move past the sale and leave him with the opportunity to buy again from you. It’s easy when you make the experience enjoyable. 

Your stand…your literature…your pop ups…your plasma screen and repeating corporate message are simply tools to help you sell.

The difference between whether you succeed or fail more than not is six inches.

It’s the six inches between your left ear and right ear. It is your cash machine for your business and it is the muscle that needs training and conditioning to get the best from your workouts at every trade-show you ever go to.

We get results… FACT!

Why wait? Call or e-mail us today and let’s make business great.
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