49 point checklist for visiting a show

Before the Show:

1. What do you want to achieve by visiting the show?

2. What does your boss want you to achieve?

3. Which exhibitors do you want to visit? Time with exhibitor

4. What is the total length of time you want to spend at the show?

5. Have you recorded how much time you want to spend with each exhibitor?

6. Have you allowed extra time for browsing, distractions and waiting in lines?

7. Who else from your company is going to the show?

8. Have you developed a plan to maximize your visit – especially at large shows?

9. What information do you need from each exhibitor you want to visit?

10. Have you researched the different vendors to find out how they differ?

11. Have you developed a plan for questions you want to ask them?

12. Have you designed a lead gathering form to research specific products/services so you can make accurate comparisons?

13. Have you made appointments with exhibitors with whom you want to meet?

14. Do you have a map of the show floor so you know where exhibitors are located and can plan your route?

15. Do you have plenty of business cards packed?

16. Do you have you file folders for organizing notes and receipts?

17. Have you packed comfortable shoes and clothing to wear on the show floor?

18. Have you considered using insoles for extra comfort?

19. Have you allowed extra space in your luggage to bring back items you collect on the show floor?

20. Have you packed a light and comfortable “carry-all” for accumulated materials?

21. Have you made your travel and hotel reservations early to maximize on discounted rates?

22. Have you booked a hotel close to the convention site to save on travelling and to give you a place to rest, and sort through information you’ve gathered?

23. Which seminars/workshops do you plan on attending? Date/Time Place

24. Have you split sessions with your colleagues to maximize your company’s participation?

25. Have you pre-registered for the event?

26. Have you planned on arriving 30 minutes before opening to avoid standing in long lines?

At the Show:

27. Have you checked the show directory in case of any changes, which may mean revising your plans?

28. Are you collecting information that is of interest to you or that might interest others in your company?

29. Are you requesting literature and samples be mailed instead of having to carry them with you?

30. Have you obtained a map of the city so that you know how to get to the venue?

31. Are you telling exhibitors you are on a tight time schedule to avoid casual chatter and get straight to business?

32. Are you looking for networking opportunities?

33. Are you chatting with industry leaders?

34. Are you looking to get invitations to exhibitors’ hospitality suites/receptions?

35. Are you introducing yourself to people around you at workshops/breakout sessions?

36. Are you remembering to hand out and collect business cards?

37. Are you hooking up with new contacts at mealtimes and other opportunities?

38. Are you skipping overly crowded booths and planning to come back at day’s end/orwhen traffic is slower?

39. Do you check coats and bags so you don’t have to drag them around with you?

40. Do you have a way to take important notes – pad and pen, small tape recorder?

41. Do you remember to take breaks after a few hours to refresh and get some fresh air because the air in convention halls is dry, stale and draining?

42. Are you drinking water regularly instead of soda or beer to avoid dehydration?

43. Are you writing a trip report as you go along and summarizing your notes every evening?

44. Are you pushing exhibitors for answers to questions they may be not prepared to answer?

45. Are you avoiding conversations with vendors whose products don’t interest you?

46. Are you leaving the show about 30 minutes before closing to avoid long lines for buses and cabs?

After the Show:

47. How are you going to implement the information gathered?

48. When will you follow-up (if necessary) with exhibitors who promised to send literature and samples you requested?

49. Have you written a summary of your show experience? ent 5

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