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Thinking about exhibiting at a tradeshow? Here's a list of the worst reasons to exhibit, including our number one reason for not exhibiting.

Last week we told you good reasons to attend a tradeshow in our post, "Never Attend a Tradeshow Before Learning These 7 Key Pre-Show Steps. Check out the post here.

Starting with number ten:

Number 10:  It’s in (fill in the city). I like it there.

Number 9:  Terrific golf course.

Number 8:  My spouse heard about it and insists we go.

Number 7:  Beats staying in the office.

Number 6:  I’ll be able to sleep in.

Number 5:  Great opportunity to party on the company’s dime.

Number 4:  I can earn airline miles and hotel points. Cha-ching!

Number 3:  It’s in the budget. If we don’t exhibit this year, it won’t be in next year’s budget.

Number 2:  It’s in the budget. If we don’t spend it, the money will go to another department..

Number 1:  Show the flag – Everyone will think we’re out of business if we aren’t there.

“Show the flag” is one that really bugs me.  I don’t know how many times I’ve heard that cited as the reason for participating in a trade show. When a company takes that approach, it is wasting money and the opportunity to make money.

If you are going to exhibit at a trade show, why would you NOT look at it as a money-making opportunity?  Oh, I’ve heard the lame excuse: “Everyone knows our company.” Assuming that “everyone” does (an unlikely assumption), does “everyone” know the full range of your products and services? Have you established a relationship with “everyone”?

By assuming that “everyone” knows your company, you are making the further assumption that there are no new entrants in the market, no new prospects. Even in the highly unlikely assumption that everyone does know your company, perhaps some of your customers have new people who are just looking for the opportunity to shake things up, like finding a new vendor to replace you.

If your organization offers products that people need or want, it is improbable that no one will visit your exhibit. It is unlikely that not a single visitor will represent a real, live lead.

Can one lone lead be worth the effort? Darn tootin’.

Contact me and I’ll tell you how one lead has been worth millions to me.

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