How to Get Ready for a Tradeshow
Ready to exhibit at a tradeshow?
The first step is to stay calm!
Trade shows can be overwhelming. And for good reason. They're one of the best ways to secure wholesale accounts, large distribution deals, sales reps, and national press coverage. If you invest the proper time + money in your trade show exhibit, you'll see major company growth.
So much goes into getting ready for a tradeshow: from walking the show to designing your booth to creating your marketing plan. You can find expert tips + tricks on each step in The Sprout Guide to Tradeshows.
Right now, we’re breaking down the to-do list and timeline to get you show-ready!
Six Months Ahead
Assess Your Goals
Lock down your short + long terms goals for exhibiting.
Determine Your Budget
You can use our sample budget to plan your expenses.
Pick the Right Show for Your Company
National or local? Industry or general? Orders or cash + carry?
Walk the Show
Attend the show to make sure. We’ve got a handy checklist for you.
Five Months Ahead
Reserve Your Booth
Work with the show staff to pick the right location
Book Travel + Lodging
Lock in those long-term rates
Protect Your Brand
Trademarks + Copyrights are your friends. Your company is about to be on display to thousands of buyers and competitors. Make sure no one can steal it!
Four Months Ahead
There’s so much that goes into booth design (and that’s part of the fun!) Check Pinterest for ideas!
Create Marketing Materials
Line sheets, order forms, catalogs, postcards, business cards, press kits
Design a Plan to Attract Buyers
Will you host events? Will you do giveaways? How can you attract your target buyer?
Two Months Ahead
Send out postcards + emails to buyers
Set your wholesale policies ahead of time
Create Ordering System
Work out the logistics of processing so many orders in such a short time
Hire + Train Staff
Find local workers to help and ensure they know the sales routine
One Month Ahead
Create a Packing list
Make sure you don’t forget the essentials...and the tradeshow essentials!
Prepare Social Media Posts
Start promoting now. One less thing you’ll have to do on show day!
Make Products Ahead of Time
You’ll be tired when you get back home so have your products ready to ship
Create Show Schedule
The show will be chaos so internal organization is key!