5 Tips for Mastering 2013’s Trade Shows

Happy holidays! The next few weeks are bound to be a blur. Whether it’s because we are all literal zombies due to Friday’s apocalypse or just figurative zombies due to consuming excessive amounts of cookies, eggnog and more cookies (I like cookies), we have to somehow find a way to work through it all and then attend trade shows in 2013.

December’s issue held PM’s 2013 Trade Show Preview. Here are a few excerpts with their zombie apocalypse alternatives added for good measure.

1. Make a list of everyone you need to see.
Use the show’s exhibitor list to create a list of your “must-sees,” “maybe sees” and possibly even “avoids.” Bullet points about what you have worked on together in the past help too.
Zombie Alternative: Same, except everyone human is a “must-see” or “must-eat-brains.”

2. Write out your schedule.
Create a document with the trade show schedule and your schedule. Even if you do not follow it exactly, having a written agenda gives you a general idea of what you need to do each day.
Zombie Alternative: This one is easy since there is only one goal: Find brains.

3. Remember business cards.
Despite the popularity of smartphones and tablets, business cards are still relevant, especially to salespeople. Having a neat case is nice too. It is both a conversation starter and a place to keep the cards of people you meet. Don’t forget to imprint something memorable on the case, like, I don’t know, your face.
Zombie Alternative: I’m not sure, but I hope zombies still care about business cards. Otherwise, my order of Brain Sponges with my contact info imprinted on them was a mistake.

4. Bring insoles, bandages and comfortable shoes.
Let’s call this one the “foot care kit.” You can own the most comfortable shoes in the universe, but unless you have someone literally massaging your feet as you walk, you will need some extra padding and bandages.
Zombie Alternative: Same. Even the undead need pampering.