Top Ways to Save on Trade Shows

by Wendy Thacker on October 14, 2010 · 0 comments

in Business,Marketing

I have officially joined the coupon craze. Yes, I’ve been clipping and hunting for buy one get one free offers, double coupons, meal deal offers and more. You’ll be absolutely amazed how much money you can save just by doing your homework. For example, on Sunday I got FREE toothpaste at CVS by using my rewards card. Yes, 100% absolutely at no cost to to me. Who doesn’t love free toothpaste?

So now that I’m in the official penny-pinching mode, I thought it would be a good idea to share my cost saving tips for trade shows with you. I’d love to hear from all of you about your tips for cost saving tips.

  • Walk the floor instead of investing in booth space. Consider paying for a day pass to walk the show floor instead of showcasing at a booth. This will save you on you on booth creation, shipping and drayage, setup, booth space charges, personnel, etc.
  • Partner with another company. You could showcase with a manufacturer or another non-competitive partner and split the expenses.
  • Pre-order before the contractor cut-off date. Make sure you order booth supplies, power, tables, etc. before the cut-off date in order to ensure the discount.
  • Review Rent vs. Purchase. Price shop before you rent/buy booth setups and accessories like flat screens, extension cords, etc. Sometimes it’s better to buy and other times it’s better to rent. Just do your homework and compare pricing.
  • Don’t stay at the convention hotel. Many trade shows and conventions are held at higher end properties. You could always stay at a budget property close by and save money. (Or, if you must consider doubling up your staff two to a room).
  • Hand carry booth/products into the show. If you have a small, suitcase-sized setup consider carrying it into the show to save on shipping/drayage. Sometimes it’s cheaper to transport via the airline or your car than it is to ship.
  • Look at Regional shows. Think about showcasing at smaller regional shows in your area where you can drive to the location and secure space at a lower cost.
  • Work, work, work your investment. Be sure to setup meetings before, during and after the show. Follow-up and follow-up again with prospects.

What tips of the trade do you have to share?

This post was written by

Wendy Thacker is a Merchandising Director at ScanSource Security. She has 20 years of experience In sales and marketing, 17 in distribution, and is a regular contributor to The Source on marketing, business planning and social media.

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