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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Any of you guys ever sit up at a home show? I need some ideas on what I should do. I just have a small booth about 8x8. I was just gonna have a table with some samples, references, and info on what we do.

You guys have any suggestions? I am not looking at doing anything extravagant.....I just want people to know who we are, what we do/have done and how to contact us.

Just think I may be out of place with just a table and sign.

Thanks
 

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Put the table against the back wall and get passer "buyers" to come in to see what you have instead of swiping your candy and samples as they roll past.

If you are in a large areas and don't know your competition they will swipe your stuff too them [email protected]@@ers
 

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When we do it , we have tried to keep it simple. You can built a nice simple display that shows some products and work. I tend to do it more to be seen and let people know I am around then trying to sell a bunch of jobs. It get to be a real cut throat deal sometimes. The people looking take your card and everyone else ,have everyone contractor come and bid, the unless you have a connection or really impressed them it all come down to who is the cheapest bid .

Don't get me wrong I have gotten some real good jobs from home shows, but also have wasted hours on bids and did not get the jobs too. All because someone else low balled the job.

It might be different in other areas , but that is the way it has been here.
 

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Just build miniature models of stuff you do. I just helped one of my reps set up for a show and his partner built a box about 2x2x3 and divided it down the middle, stuck a 100w lightbulb on each side and then put radiant barrier on his side and just decking on the other... and had a point and shoot thermal reader attached to the display. Ill try and get a pic for you today.

Whatever your display is going to be, go all out on it and make it look like it came from the manufacturer. Professionalism is impressive. Put your lighted displays in the back of the booth and try to get people to walk in so you can talk to them. Having your tables in an L shape is the best for an 8x8 booth... You can also have banners made that come with a stand. The 3x6 foot banners are roughly 300$.

If you want to show the importance of drip edge or you have a sample of a vented drip edge, throw some shingles on it and set it in something that holds water. Then you can cycle the water to run down the shingles like rain with a $10 fish pump and some hose. Even if thats not your main focus, who cares, people will want to see the display and that gives you a chance to talk to them.

Just make your booth awesome whatever you do. If nothing more at least get some color changing led lights and set them up to draw attention.

Instead of business cards, give them pens with your company name and number.
 

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Just build miniature models of stuff you do. I just helped one of my reps set up for a show and his partner built a box about 2x2x3 and divided it down the middle, stuck a 100w lightbulb on each side and then put radiant barrier on his side and just decking on the other... and had a point and shoot thermal reader attached to the display. Ill try and get a pic for you today.

Whatever your display is going to be, go all out on it and make it look like it came from the manufacturer. Professionalism is impressive. Put your lighted displays in the back of the booth and try to get people to walk in so you can talk to them. Having your tables in an L shape is the best for an 8x8 booth... You can also have banners made that come with a stand. The 3x6 foot banners are roughly 300$.

If you want to show the importance of drip edge or you have a sample of a vented drip edge, throw some shingles on it and set it in something that holds water. Then you can cycle the water to run down the shingles like rain with a $10 fish pump and some hose. Even if thats not your main focus, who cares, people will want to see the display and that gives you a chance to talk to them.

Just make your booth awesome whatever you do. If nothing more at least get some color changing led lights and set them up to draw attention.

Instead of business cards, give them pens with your company name and number.
Good post Madrina- I was starting to think you just came to cyber flirt.
 

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The Follow up is the most important thing you can do If You talk to the client you should be the one showing up to make the close or give the bid. When I do the Fair I set the appointment for the next morning or as soon as I can, Fresh doesn't spoil so get the leads and follow up .
 

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Well you probably won't take my advice but I do at least two every year.

You want the booth to feel open so with such a small area you have (it will feel up quickly) you may only have room for a shingle rack, a literature rack and a table.

Stand during the show and engage your potential customers. Say hello when they walk by. This may sound like common sense but the last show we did three weeks ago the guy across from us did siding. He sat the whole time and had his head in a book. We got more quality leads the first day of the show than people we saw him talk to the whole show.

It's a good idea to have an iPad or tv loaded with pictures on it. Use all your hands on experience as an advantage because a lot of people who work home shows are just sales reps.

Keep the area clean as well, bring a vacuum or broom to have with you the duration of the show. Don't do any giveaways.

Don't give out candy. You don't want people taking candy making small talk while you miss out on someone to talk to. Your serious potential buyers don't care about candy.

You should be doing the home show to earn business, not just get your name out there. Make sure people know that not only will they see you there but also when you meet to quote the job. That's important because it's the first part of building trust so if you aren't the person to show up to quote, leave that out otherwise you already broke the trust.

The show we did in the middle of Feb has already generated over 100 in sales and there's still snow on the ground and only been a handful of days above freezing so they definitely work. The more effort you put in, the more you get out.

Edit - I should also add we had roughly 20 other companies at the show offering the same services so you could even perform better without all the competition.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for the advice everyone. I have never done my own spot at a home show, set-up some for others and that's about it.

I have been in business for 20 years now and never really felt the need to advertise or build business. Most people know me in this area and can get references from customers I have had for 20 years. I like staying small enough that I can be on every job and work personally for every customer. I like to work on every job I bid and am on site from start to finish....so therefore I can only take so many jobs every year.

The main reason I got a spot at this home show...was because our newer local guys all set up at it, then they bang doors after storms, aggressive sales tactics, etc. That's not how I operate...

I want to remind everyone I am still here after 20 years, same location, same number, same owners. And to introduce an insulated siding I now install and to let people know of our recycling initiative, but most of all to let them know they are not my customers but my neighbors...and there is more to it then getting paid.

Thanks again for all the advice. You all gave me some great ideas....I appreciate it.
 

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Butcher of wood and metal
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Thanks for the advice everyone. I have never done my own spot at a home show, set-up some for others and that's about it.

I have been in business for 20 years now and never really felt the need to advertise or build business. Most people know me in this area and can get references from customers I have had for 20 years. I like staying small enough that I can be on every job and work personally for every customer. I like to work on every job I bid and am on site from start to finish....so therefore I can only take so many jobs every year.

The main reason I got a spot at this home show...was because our newer local guys all set up at it, then they bang doors after storms, aggressive sales tactics, etc. That's not how I operate...

I want to remind everyone I am still here after 20 years, same location, same number, same owners. And to introduce an insulated siding I now install and to let people know of our recycling initiative, but most of all to let them know they are not my customers but my neighbors...and there is more to it then getting paid.

Thanks again for all the advice. You all gave me some great ideas....I appreciate it.
Pretty much how I fill about the whole thing. Hope it goes good for you.

PS take some picture and show us what you ended up doing.:thumbsup:
 

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And make sure to use all of that to your advantage. People go to these shows to learn something, not talk with sales reps who just need contact information.

One of the jobs I got (insulated siding ironically) went with me because I was the ONLY person at the home show they met that was the same person that followed up with them. They told me one large company called 8 times and every time it was somebody different who called. Those things are important to people.

Get a banner made that says something along the lines of "Over 20 years, same location, same phone number"

"Owner is your salesman, get direct answers"
 

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I have found Home Show's to be a waste of time. Yes we'll generate a few hundred leads, but we'll produce the same in a week with a targeted marketing campaign.

We've found Home Shows are suitable for our brand recognition, solely.

Here is/was our set up:

- 8x8 (always reserved a corner spot near the entry, food court or excessively large spa vendor); this gave us 2 walls to build out and a L-Booth like set up
- 14' display walls with built-in 42' plasma's cycling photos (1000's!)
- Never used a gimmick or catchy signage (we try to avoid all the hype and just solidify our reputation/market presence)
- NEVER use any setup that requires passer by's to lean over! NEVER!!!! Always have every brochure, ipads (to fill out digital lead sheet) or whatever system you utilize at arms reach mid-drift high
- We kept two sales reps over the weekends and one during non-peak hours.
- Lots of logo'd up brochures for the "looky-lou's"
- Wifi!!!! Those events are boring! (just joshing, but you'll get some serious down time)

Just my $0.02 . . .
 

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Great tips. I've been thinking of setting up a booth next time one comes around.

At least for something different to do.
 

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There is one here that's been going on since the 50's and it stopped. Just got that info this morning. Let's blame the internet.
 
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