Joe Greeley here, for Nimlok Minnesota.

Yeah, so you have that neighbor in your neighborhood, somebody that you see coming and you kind of jump behind the bushes – you kind of avoid at all costs? You know that conversations going to go on and on, they’re never going to let you go, and they’re going to go off on wild tangents, and you’re just going to feel uncomfortable.  You see them and you go, “Oh, I gotta go, I gotta hide!” Right?  Trust me, everybody has one.  Well, let’s put it this way, if you don’t have one – I don’t know how to break this to you – but you’re it.

In a trade show world, we got all these people coming at us, right? Some can talk for hours, some can go off on tangents, ask us a lot of questions, right?  But, do you have a qualifier that says, “This is the type of people/person I should be spending time with”?

The idea here is play where you can win. Now I’m not suggesting that you’re rude and you dive behind a counter or behind a tower to avoid somebody – far from it!  But you should train your salespeople, though, to figure out very, very quickly – is this a tire-kicker?  Is this the strange neighbor?  Is this a real prospect – something that’s going to turn into something – or is this guy just coming for my pens, my candy, and my cool stress balls?

The idea here, again, is come up with some qualifiers that the entire team shares.  Now, for every company it’s slightly different, but you should have a list of criteria that helps them define it very, very easily and very, very quickly. Either that or they’re going to be spending a tremendous amount of time with, again, the crazy neighbor.  Somebody that just wants to bend your ear, but ultimately the conversation – the relationship – really doesn’t go anywhere.  It just takes a lot of time. I’m sure they’re nice people, don’t get me wrong. But you should also have a strategy to try to move them away from the booth, or move them to an area of the booth, or move them out of the booth entirely.

So, again, remember, play where you can win. Spend your time, your effort, and your sales team’s effort with the people that can win.  Now I know some of this seems obvious but it’s hard sometimes to put into practice. So come up with a strategy and actually practice it.  Work at it, share it, come up with ideas with your entire sales team.

Anyway, I hope this helps! Let us know how we can help.  Feel free to give us a call if you want to talk through it, or if you just want to bend somebody’s ear. We’re here.