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Trade Shows

lewdog's Avatar

I was doing some research to see when some trade shows will be happening next year, and I had a few questions for people that have gone to these shows before.  Can anyone get into them?  Can you walk around trying to market your idea to the different booths or do you have to have your own booth?  Is there any other rules that I should know?  I was thinking that once I got my patent pending, the name trademarked, and my site fully functional, I would take some prototypes to a trade show and try to get a direct licensing deal with a company.  Is a person allowed to do this?

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magurn's Avatar

Hi William!

I'll let the other community members advise on their experiences, but in my experience in the industry, some shows do allow outside participants and some do not. They all do have websites with details on how to access, if their are fees, etc. 

We wish you the best of luck!

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chappy75's Avatar

I have done a couple trade shows. Booth to Booth marketing is certainly frowned upon. At the Orlando Surf Expo I saw something interesting. Current Drives, Electrafin bought a booth but put their product at several booths that his product fit as an after market add-on. He wandered from booth to booth and got great spread and exposure. Seemed to work but people came to my booth looking for him. He was a hard target to pin down.

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kimmyk's Avatargold

Candy works too!  :)

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keeztan's Avatar

Many moons ago........when I was working with an automotive supplier we were looking at promotional items to give away at a large trade show. As many of you may know these items although seemingly inexpensive can add up to a lot of cash expended for little return. I hit upon the idea of instead of candy, pens, hats, T-Shirts etc.; I could buy White Castle Hamburgers for 25 cents each and throw a sticker on the wrapper. As soon as we lifted the lid on our coolers and the aroma of grilled onions hit the air, we were mobbed! Somewhat close to the entrance, it was funny watching people coming in rubbernecking trying to find the source of the smell they recognized. It certainly drew traffic and some interest.

David
Steven J. Frey
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chappy75's Avatar

on day 1 of the Surf Expo Orlando I thought it would be AWESOME to have Dunkins Doughnuts since our booth was so close to the coffee station. 

Have you ever thrown a potatoe chip or French Fry into the wind at the beach? Yeah, similar result. And story ends with getting doused with biological matter!

Not much good came from the doughnuts either.

Mark Bartlett
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keeztan's Avatar

A few years back I was attending a large plastic injection molding equipment show in Chicago. There was an exhibitor showing off their large capacity molding machine. The machine was forming and spitting out your typical white plastic patio chair and people were lined up as they gave away chairs hot off the press. All I could think is that it is hard enough carrying around all the brochures and catalogues that are pushed your way, but trying to maneuver a show carrying a lawn chair to save a few bucks? The last laugh was at the airport as I viewed the mountain of white plastic chairs left behind by those that finally thought "What was I thinking??"

Steven J. Frey
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kimmyk's Avatargold

I just heard about those scanners today... pretty cool!

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chappy75's Avatar

These were the badges at the Orlando  Surf Expo. I didn't rent the scanner. I just took pictures of the badges and followed up... Kept the ones that panned out.

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vitaminguy's Avatar

I'm tempted to say, "Badges!? We don't need no stinking badges!!" But I have no idea what it's supposed to mean!

Kim L
James Chapman
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