Whether you sell movie props or orange flavored snack cakes, your business will not survive without sales. To get sales you must have customers. To have customers, people must know that you exist. Even established businesses cannot become lax about the advertising and public presence lest people forget that they are still around. Though ads are important, there's no better way to access niche customer bases than to attend a trade show in order to promote your products or services.

What exactly is a trade show you ask? Read here!

People recognize the value of having a forum in which all the proprietors of a certain industry can gather, so there are trade shows for just about everything. CleanTek Water Solutions is a regular exhibitor at WEFTEC, the Water Environment Federation Technical Exhibition and Conference. This event is the largest trade show for professionals whose work involves wastewater, and you can be sure that there is a trade show somewhere that fits your business niche. You may even find that your business fits with the theme of several different trade shows. For instance, an photographer might attend a real estate show to promote his services for taking listing photos, rent a booth at the art show to sell the hobby photos he takes in his spare time, and set up a booth at the wedding show to demonstrate his skill in taking wedding photos. Many thanks to Streetstarscustoms.com for their input regarding our questions.

As a business owner, it's your responsibility to keep your ear to the ground and find out when trade shows are happening. Getting onto the mailing list of industry organizations, reading industry magazines, and keeping an eye on the upcoming schedules at the city's convention centers can give you advance warning as to when you'll need to prepare promotional material. Most trade shows are annual events, so once you find out about it mark your calendar for next year as a reminder.

There are several different ways you can take advantage of a trade show. You can rent a booth on the trade show floor and create a display of your wares as well as the promotional materials that incorporate customer testimonials about the services rendered them. Having a booth allows customers to come over and try your products, ask you questions, pick up promotional freebies, and set up appointments to take advantage of your services. You can also attend the trade show alone and use the opportunity to speak with other vendors and customers.

When you have a booth at a trade show, you'll need to make it attractive to potential customers. This means creating an aesthetically pleasing and professional looking display, printing up plenty of brochures, pamphlets, and business cards for your company, and of course planning an enticing extra. This might be a raffle for a prize pack containing your products or some promotional freebies such as logo pens or stickers. You should also plan to give scheduled demonstrations of your products or services so people can see them in action.

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