On June the 7th, the Chamber will present the 2017 Business Expo. This year marks the 16th business trade show our Chamber has presented to spotlight the businesses which make up our growing and diverse region. The Expo grew out of the Business Big Top at LakeFest, a two-day festival held at Jetton Park in the 1990’s.
The Business Big Top featured about 30 businesses under a large outdoor tent. Today, more than 170 businesses and organizations tell their story at the largest business expo in the Charlotte region. While it does not rival boat or cars shows and does not have the attendance of bridal or homes shows, it remains the largest business to business Expo in our region with more than 2,000 people attending each year.
Look at photos from previous years and you are likely to see many of the same faces. Why? Because those business owners, managers, and employees understand that the Expo isn’t just about getting new leads and building new relationships. While that is indeed a goal – for many, it’s an opportunity to renew existing business relationships and visit with old friends.
I asked Doug Kropelnicki of A-1 Vacuum Solutions of Huntersville and Sharon Simpson of CURRENTS Magazine, what has brought them back as an exhibitor year after year. Their replies were almost identical, “It’s a chance to see many of my customers or clients – and hopefully a chance to meet new ones!”
Not everyone understands how to “Work a Trade Show.” Some leave frustrated because they feel they stood at their booth most of the day being “solicited” by the very attendees they hoped to make potential customers. Still others are told by their owner or manager I want you to work the booth today at the Business Expo. The only problem is they’ve never worked a trade show before!
So, how do you deal with those people who stop by your booth trying to sell you? How do you make your booth stand out from the competition? What should you do to prepare for this – or any other business trade show?
This month, Pat Heidrich with Sandler Training will present, “Making the Trade Show – Your Show! Getting the most out of your Business Expo Experience.” This 90-minute seminar will take place Monday, May 1 9:00 to 10:30 am at Sandler Training located in the Chamber Building. Participation is limited to the 2017 Business Expo Exhibitors.
We will also be posting Trade Show Tips on our member blog at LakeNormanChamber.org. We hope you find them helpful. Most importantly - don’t miss out on Lake Norman’s biggest Show and Tell – the Lake Norman Business Expo. We’ll see you there!
W.E. “Bill” Russell, CCE IOM
President & CEO
Caption: Doug Kropelnicki of A-1 Vacuum Solutions of Huntersville at the 2016 Lake Norman Chamber Business Expo