UPFRONT» Your Career
12 Trade Show Musts
Have a clear multi-purpose strategy for each conference and trade show you attend
BY PAULA COMFORT BY PAULA COMFORT
Your company has invested in you by sending you to a conference and trade show. Upon your return, provide a detailed summary of the highlights to your senior leadership team. Include the research and recommendations you have compiled from your experience.
Prior to attending the event, under- stand your current corporate objec-
tives. Some purchasing decisions re- quire extensive time commitments, big investments and several face-to-face meetings.
you would like to meet with at the trade show.
face meetings go a long way to further- ing business and relationships.
Do your research in advance. Go online to review videos and under-
stand your competitors. 14 Fitness Business Canada March/April 2016
Pick a specific time and day to meet with them.
Create relationships and make these new connections. Face-to-
Create a list of vendors whose ses- sions you want to attend and who
bers for their input so you can have the most informative meeting possible.
derstand the quality of a product or service than firsthand experience.
trade show can be a huge educational opportunity.
6 7 8 9
At the trade show, get referenc- es and recommendations from
other successful industry leaders on products and services you are investigating.
Go to the trade show more than just once. It is usually
Take advantage of the experts who are there to teach you. A
Participate in product demonstra- tions. There is no better way to un-
Create a list of questions to ask at the meetings. Ask your team mem-
impossible to cover an entire trade show thoroughly during just one visit.
Get all the information at the trade show you need to com-
plete a full summary for your team. Brochures, technical details, cost and timing are all key elements to research.
Make it a company policy to always get three quotes from
three different providers.
Paula Comfort has 20+ years of experience in the fitness in- dustry. Most recently she was managing director of Fitness for Spa Chakra Inc., a luxury spa and health club company where she started the division. Previous roles include area
vice-president of The Sports Clubs of Canada/ Bally Total Fitness. She is currently a partner in her own consulting company, 360 Impact Group. Contact her at paula@360impactgroup. com or 416-565-6025.
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