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Pop up Display Stand, Exhibition Stand Staffing and Training

Updated on October 23, 2014

If you are exhibiting at a trade show with a stand or booth, get helpful advice and tips for successful preparation: display stand staffing and training.

When planning any Exhibition Stand, or Trade Show Booth, the Staff who present the ‘face’ of your Company upon it, are a crucial factor. It does not matter if you have Banner Stands, A Pop up Display Stand or, the most expensive ‘all bells and whistles’ bespoke Exhibition Stand, if your staff are not well-trained and enthusiastic with the ability to attract visitors to your stand and engage them in conversation - and convert those conversations into sales leads, you are wasting your time (and your money).

Well trained staff are key to attracting visitors to your stand

Etisalat at GiTex 2008
Etisalat at GiTex 2008

Choose Personnel Carefully

In my opinion, it is vital to have staff from your sales team on the stand at all times. By all means have technical back-up available but your ‘front-line troops’ must be sales people. Staff from the ‘shop floor’, the manufacturing and production areas of your business are not only a great asset if chosen carefully, but will go away from the Exhibition more motivated and focused and feeling part of the team.

How Many Stand Staff Do I Need?

Obviously this depends upon the size of the stand and the number of people that you have available. There are however a couple of guidelines:

  1. Never have less than two people at any one time - you will need one person keeping an eye on your expensive Exhibition Equipment during set up and breakdown whilst materials and literaterure are being transported to and from your vehicles. You will also need to ensure that the staff can take a break and leave the stand manned.
  2. Increase numbers of staff according to the size of the stand. A good 'rule of thumb' is to  work on one person for every metre of frontage - for example, six people on a stand 6m x 3m which means that there will always be at least four people working at any time.

 

Agency Staff add an extra element to your Stand

Agency Staff from StaffWarehouse
Agency Staff from StaffWarehouse

Full-time or Part-time Staff?

My own experience is that it is more successful to have a core team of people full time at the show. These can then supplemented by management and staff from all areas of the business on a day-to-day basis.

Should I use Agency or Temporary Staff?

There are many Exhibition Staffing companies and agencies who provide Promotion Girls (or boys) who act as temporary staff for stands.  They may be ‘resting’ actors or models or perhaps students and normally come through an agency who will obviously charge for their services.  Temporary staff can be used to great effect, freeing you and your staff to talk business to your visitors

Staff Training before the Exhibition

Exhibition Staff Training

Maximising results from visitors to your stand means having staff trained to gain maximum benefit for your company from every opportunity. Make use of any training offered by the exhibition organisers.

Organise training sessions for every member of staff coming to the Exhibition, whatever part of the Company they come from and for however long, or short a time they are going to be on your stand. This can be done in group sessions of about one hour for non-sales staff and this should be enough to cover the basics. Your core team will obviously meet more frequently prior to the Exhibition to talk over approach, tactics, objectives and targets.

All staff should be trained on the Unique Selling Points (USPs) of your Company. Give every stand staff member a copy of the following, which you can use as a template to fill in your company USPs. As once staff are able to answer the question, what is special about my company, they will able to represent you with pride and enthusiasm (which is a great selling point in itself).

U.S.P.s (Unique Selling Points)

  1. What is special about my product?
  2. What is unique about my approach?
  3. How do I do things differently to competitors?
  4. Have I got special accreditation such as ISO9002, Investors in People or am I a member of a recognised trade body such as The Booksellers Association or The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors?
  5. Have I got any special delivery arrangements, methods of ordering (can I receive orders via the company website for example)?
  6. What customer support do I offer after the sale?
  7. Are there any special ‘add-ons’?
  8. What represents real value for money?
  9. Is there a special offer at this Exhibition?

All staff should learn and inwardly digest this as it is important that there is a commonality in approach - in other words that everyone is 'singing from the same song sheet'.

Everyone on the stand should be encouraged to engage with visitors and to talk about their own role in the company. For example, in the Laundry I worked for, a Chef visiting the stand was interested to talk to the lady who did the embroidery of his name on his jackets.

Appoint an Exhibition Stand Manager

Your Exhibition Stand Manager will have overall responsibility for the duration of the show - of course, this could be you!  He, or she, should appoint a stand co-ordinator, a different person for each day of the show and this could be a junior member of staff.  In my experience this leads to excellent team development as well as generating fun for the individual concerned.

The stand co-ordinator's responsibility is to ensure that breaks are taken regularly and on time, (I would suggest at least two half hour and one hour long break per day and more if possible).  The stand co-ordinator is responsible for making sure that the stand is tidy at all times and that there is sufficient literature and give-aways available.

Appoint a First Aid Person

This could be the Stand Manager.  They need to look after the Health and Safety Manual and First Aid Kit.  It is not permissible to have pain killers in the First Aid Kit but it is a good idea for team members to keep some headache tablets available for their own use.

Staff Badges and Identification

Make sure that your people have good identification and that they wear it properly.  Badges clipped to a belt are not easily seen.  Remember too, that your stand staff may not be allowed into the show unless they can produce the necessary identification when they arrive.

You have a great Exhibition Stand .....

You have a brilliant stand, train your staff well, fill them with enthusiasm and you will have a great Exhibition Stand Success on your hands!  Picture from Clip Display
You have a brilliant stand, train your staff well, fill them with enthusiasm and you will have a great Exhibition Stand Success on your hands! Picture from Clip Display

Staff Incentives

It's hard work on an Exhibition Stand and you need 105% performance from each member of staff.  Incentives can take many forms and do not need to be expensive but are worth their weight in gold.  You may decide to give a prize for the most leads, appointments, sales or for the biggest or best lead.

Want to know more about Pop Up Displays?

If you would like to know more about Pop up Displays, and using them for Exhibition success, please visit my new site http://www.popupdisplaysguide.com - this will be building into a comprehensive guide and I would welcome your comments and suggestions. Please subscribe to the RSS feed if you wish to receive all the latest updates. My latest post is about Roller Banner Stands and you can also purchase a copy of the Manual Making Exhibitions Work For You in pdf format from the site.

Want More Information?

The video below contains a 60 minute webinar with some really good tips for increasing sales from your trade show stand - well worth watching!

Exhibition Stand Staff Training Session

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  • Alison Graham profile image
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    Alison Graham 7 months ago from UK

    Thank you for your kind comment, Rashid. Glad you found the information about exhibition stands and finding suitable staff, helpful.

  • profile image

    Rashid Shaikh 7 months ago

    Very helpful article article about exhibition stands and display stands staffing. if you are looking for exhibition stands or display stands in dubai then bme advertising i.e. bmeevent.com is a good option.

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    Tracy 21 months ago

    What a wonderful and informative article!! All points are accurately covered.An exhibition is a great place for various businesses to make connections with potential new customers. It could be anything from a wholesaler looking to find new businesses to sell stock to, to a perfume company looking to entice members of the public with their new fragrance. In every situation the goal will be the same – to catch the eye of potentially interested parties in order to make new connections and sales. http://www.mindspiritdesign.com/ can be a good option to choose your exhibiting needs.

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