When it comes to running a successful booth at a trade show, there is a big difference between standing out and wasting your time. When people visit a trade show, they are looking for something interesting to grab their attention. The difficult part for business professionals is that they have a hard time determining exactly what an interesting trade show attraction is. As you prepare to invest a great deal of your time and money in a trade show, there are eight ways you can stand out and get everyone’s attention.

Hire A Celebrity

One of the biggest mistakes that companies make is assuming that any celebrity will bring attention to their booth. The truth is that there are two kinds of celebrities that will always bring booth traffic; actresses and sports stars.

Actresses appeal to men and women for different reasons and a famous actress can help to fill your booth for the entire trade show. A sports figure that has been in the spotlight lately is someone that people of all ages look up to and someone that people want to meet. If you want to get people to come to your trade show booth, then hire an actress or a relevant sports figure and you will see traffic.

A Light Show

Visitors at a trade show want to see something special if they are going to spend time at your booth. If you are at an indoor trade show, then a light show with some music will always get people’s attention. You may have to limit how often you use your music and lights because of trade show rules, but your traffic will significantly increase each time people see those lights and hear that music.

Each Booth Employee Needs To Be Dynamic

It is not enough for your booth employees to be at the booth and answer customer questions. Your booth personnel needs to engage visitors and get them involved in conversation. The conversation does not have to start off with talk about your product, but it needs to move in that direction. An engaging and dynamic booth staff will make your company stand out from the rest.

A Practical Giveaway

First of all, you need a marketing giveaway if you want people to visit your booth. If you do not have free gifts to offer visitors, then they won’t spend time at your booth. Next, your giveaway needs to be something people will use. A good example is a pen with LED lighting on it. The pen part is practical and something people can use, and the LED part is interesting and fun. It is the kind of practical, yet exciting, giveaway that people will use after they go home. The best part is that the giveaway has your company information printed right on it.

Have A Convincing Sales Pitch

If you want to stand out at a trade show, then your booth personnel need to have good sales pitches. You need booth personnel that know the product so well that they can launch into a good pitch from any angle. If you have sales people that are stumbling over their own words and do not know the sales literature inside and out, then you will not be able to keep visitors interested.

Look Professional And Look Like A Team

Your booth personnel need to dress the same and use the same approach to give the unmistakable aura of a team. You will see plenty of trade show booths that have sales personnel that are doing their own thing and do not look like a coherent team, and you will see those booths doing a minimal amount of business. If you want to bring in the visitors, then look professional and be a team.


Smiling is free, simple, and effective. Whenever your booth personnel make eye contact with a visitor, your booth personnel need to smile. Visitors will choose a booth manned by friendly people every time over a booth of people that look like they would rather be somewhere else.

Network With Visitors

When visitors come to your trade show booth, give them a reason to tell others about your booth. It could be your light show or it could be the cloth bags you are giving away, the truth is that it does not matter. You need to get the visitors on your side and they will start sending more people your way. Networking is indeed important.

Standing out at a trade show is not easy. It takes dedication and planning to grab the attention of a trade show audience. But once you have their attention, you will find it much easier to start generating sales leads you can use.

By Kar

Dr. Kar works in the interface of digital transformation and data science. Professionally a professor in one of the top B-Schools of Asia and an alumni of XLRI, he has extensive experience in teaching, training, consultancy and research in reputed institutes. He is a regular contributor of Business Fundas and a frequent author in research platforms. He is widely cited as a researcher. Note: The articles authored in this blog are his personal views and does not reflect that of his affiliations.