logo
 


Log in

How To Develop New Business at International Trade Shows

by Gwen Parsons 7. May 2015 19:26

Many companies today are reaching beyond their native borders to develop new business opportunities. Whether the goal is to build a global brand, increase revenue, expand distribution, or establish operations, trade shows are one of the best ways to introduce your company to a new market. The following key points should be beneficial to exploring international trade shows.



Find the right event. There are a number of searchable trade show directories online that enable you to research trade shows by country, industry, search term, and dates. Examples include M&A or Expobase. Your exhibit house should be able to help you screen appropriate trade shows based on your specific goals.



Do your research. Learn as much as you can about international exhibiting in general and specifically in your target markets. Exhibitor Magazine publishes an annual article on top trade show destinations. The ExhibitorLive conference offers a number of international education sessions. Mark your calendar to attend Feb 29-Mar 2, 2016 and register here to receive conference updates.

A new book "Trade Shows from One Country to the Next" offers fascinating insights into trade show marketing in 45 countries. Author Larry Kulchawik has over 40 years of experience in the international trade show arena. His book focuses on venues, regulations, exhibit architecture, cultural differences, behavioral adjustments and communication skills needed to successfully market products and services at trade shows in foreign countries. Order a copy of his comprehensive guide at Amazon.com



Select an experienced partner. You will want to work with an organization that has experience in your target market. Ideally the organization you choose will have operations located in your target market. Nomadic Display has offices in major markets in the US and Europe that offer display fabrication, exhibit rentals, graphics, and show services. We produce from the location closest to our clients’ exhibition destination to reduce time and expense. If you plan to work with an independent consultant, be sure to ask for client references to verify their experience.



Design for a different audience. Your trade show display needs to engage an audience of a different culture. That requires an understanding of the style, colors, language, in-booth activities, and more that will drive the optimal trade show display design. To effectively collaborate at your exhibit design kick off meeting bring show specific regulations, a floor plan denoting your space on it and a design brief that includes your research into your target market.

For more tips on international exhibiting, go to Resources.

is the Senior Vice President of Marketing at Nomadic Display. She is a regular contributor to the Nomadic Display Blog and can be found at Google + and LinkedIn.

 

Five Tips for International Exhibiting

by Gwen Parsons 10. October 2013 17:48

International exhibitions can present new and different challenges. Aside from the logistics there are also cultural differences to consider. To put your best foot forward at trade shows, it’s important to be informed before you travel abroad.

1. Think Global, Act Local
While English may be considered a universal language, you may benefit from having a translator present in your trade show exhibit or exhibition stand.

Although many business men and women converse in English, it’s important to provide trade show attendees with print or digital information in their native language. Potential prospects need to fully comprehend the benefits of your products and services. Many cultures seek technical details, so provide metric measurements and weights. 

Bring plenty of business cards. Unless you have arranged for your toll free telephone number to be accessible from other countries, be sure to include a direct dial telephone number.

trade show display

2. Don’t Assume, Ask.

While regions may share similarities, every country can be different. 

The US uses 120v electricity and Japan uses 110v. Many European countries, Russia and China use 220v. Brazil uses 110v and 220v. So you’ll need to have adaptors and transformers for American lights or purchase or rent substitutes.

Drayage, delivering exhibit shipments from the loading dock to your booth space, is a common expense in US trade shows. That expense may be combined with other fees, or require no charge, in other countries.

Avoid surprises by inquiring about what materials and services are subject to VAT (value added tax) or GST (goods and services tax) - at what rate, and whether or how you may file for reimbursement.

3. Get help from experts
Consider working with an experienced exhibit company that has their own international offices. Customs can be a complex and lengthy process. Paperwork errors can cause delays that impact your budget. Exhibit plans often need to be submitted along with documentation to show management to verify it meets local electrical and fire safety regulations.

Nomadic has multiple offices in key trade show cities like Las Vegas, New York, DC, London and Frankfurt. This enables us to coordinate display design, production, rentals, graphics and logistical support from the locations closest to client events so we can save them time, money and headaches.

trade show display

4. Basic Business Etiquette

Before you leave, learn as much as you can about the culture of your trade show audience. When in doubt, err on the side of formality.

In general, conservative business attire is recommended. Keep your hands out of your pockets and hand gestures to a minimum as it can be off putting. 

Greet visitors using their last name until you are asked to address someone by their first name. Don’t rush through introductions. Age demands a higher level of respect in Asia, so address older people first. European business people often greet one another with a firm handshake, whereas Asian countries tend to avoid body contact. Asking personal questions of any kind may be viewed as inappropriate.

5. Take Your Time
You want to build new relationships through face-to-face contact. Many cultures attitude toward time is more relaxed and conversation more casual. Take time to get to know visitors before diving into a sales pitch. Refreshments encourage casual conversation so in-booth hospitality is often incorporated into the display design. Offer visitors comfortable seating, a hot or cold drink and light snacks. 

In general, American trade show hours are shorter than in other countries. Adapt your booth schedule accordingly to incorporate frequent breaks for your staff. Jet lag combined with longer hours on your feet is a recipe for fatigue.

American exhibitors often hold brief conversations with many visitors and collect their information to contact them after the show. Exhibitions are used for in-depth discussions or to close business deals in some cultures.  Lastly, don’t let a lengthy evaluation process frustrate you; some cultures don’t make decisions at a rapid pace.

Do you have others tips to share with our readers?


is the Senior Vice President of Marketing at Nomadic Display. She is a regular contributor to the Nomadic Display Blog and can be found at Google + and LinkedIn.

 

*.*