This past week I was able to attend the National FEW Ethanol Conference in St. Louis. It was a great experience. I was able to connect with some great people in the industry and learn a little more about the process of producing ethanol and assorted co-products like Dried Distillers Grain (DDGS) and corn oil. I learned how companies approach their businesses from a profit stand point and the different steps they take in producing a quality product.
As I thought about the way I talked to attendees in front of our company booth, I took some notes on how I could use the tradeshow experience to connect with people online on social media sites. To me, trade shows were the first social media platforms. You literally talk to people face-to-face. Here are some of the findings:
Trade show Action TSA | Social Media Action SMA
TSA – Connect with other vendors at the trade show. | SMA – Connect with advocates of your business on social media. These people will not necessarily purchase your product or services, but they will talk about your brand.
TSA -Make sure you take down the appropriate name information. | SMA -Know who you are connecting with and do a little investigation before connecting with them or following them back.
TSA – Make sure your booth is setup and ready to go. | SMA – Make sure you have an informative user/company profile with website link.
TSA – Give people a reason to visit your booth for your current clients. (Hand out higher-end item) | SMA – Encourage users to contact you offline through phone or email .Take the conversation off-line.
TSA – Watch the traffic patterns. Sometimes, your location may be too isolated from the general flow of traffic. | SMA – Make sure you are spending time with the right people and not the spammy people.
If you make contacts with the right people, you will always be successful. It really does come down to people once you look at the comparisons between trade shows and social media.
What are your thoughts?