“Coffee’s for closers only.” If you’ve seen the movie Glengarry Glenn Ross, you certainly remember a foul-mouthed Alec Baldwin who plays Blake in the film, barking at Shelley, portrayed by Jack Lemmon. Blake is a tough talking sales leader brought in to motivate the group to close sales, who goes on to announce that for this month’s sales contest 1st prize is a Cadillac Eldorado, 2nd prize is a set of steak knives, and 3rd prize is you’re fired!
Blake’s technique probably a bit extreme and definitely inflammatory for the trade show floor but how do you convey your expectations and motivate your booth staff?
- Set Expectations. Meet with your staff prior to your trade show and clearly define their roles. Make sure they understand the investment your company has made in participating in the show including the expense of travel & lodging involved. Discuss your expectations in terms of gaining new leads and closing sales. Get everyone on the same page for a rating system for your leads to help everyone understand where the leads are in the pipeline. Set goals with your staff and get their commitment to reach these goals. Cover housekeeping rules such as being on time, on your feet, not eating in the booth, and the use of personal mobile phones in the booth. If mobile marketing is part of your show promotions this may be acceptable but obviously this is not the time for personal business. It is an exciting and fun time but it’s definitely not a vacation!
- Role Play. Role play with your team techniques for engaging prospects on the show floor. Use role play to not only discuss how you will handle your qualified leads, but also how you will move those along who are not a good fit. Make the role play fun and lighthearted to relax anyone’s inhibitions about being on the spot in front of their peers. It’s always better to get those fumbles out in front of your peers and discuss how to answer those objections than to be in an odd situation in front of a prospect. This is great for teambuilding and getting everyone on the same page.
- Prizes. Create a sales contest for closed sales or leads gained. Ok, maybe not a Cadillac or set of steak knives but something that will get your reps attention and keep them focused on your goals for the show. It could be a gift card to a nice restaurant or retailer, a paid day off, or maybe a round of golf! You can have a winner for each day and/or an overall winner for the entire show. Creating competition amongst your staff to drive results is an excellent way to motivate the team.
- Tell Who Gets The Leads. Address the distribution of leads after the show. Make sure you are up front with your crew about how leads will be allocated. Whether it’s based on their performance at the show or some other metrics make sure everyone is clear so there is no dissension amongst the ranks.
- Demonstrate Accountability. Check with your team on how your new prospects are moving through the pipeline. Don’t micromanage but let them know that you’re there to lend your expertise to help move them from prospect to client!
What are some of the techniques you’ve used to get the most out of your trade show booth staff? Share your comments on booth staffing in the comments area below.
Learn more ways to motivate your booth staffers to higher performance. Click here to get your free copy of the 48-page Booth Staffing Guidebook, filled with useful articles, checklists, and worksheets.