Fortune Cookie Wisdom for Exhibitors

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Confucious may not have had trade show experience, but what if he did? Perhaps he would have drafted tips for the New Year like these:

  1. “He who fails to set goals will have no success to measure.”
  2. “The exhibitor who stands and smiles attracts more traffic than one who sits and waits for someone to stop.”
  3. “Exhibiting without pre-show promotions is like throwing a party without sending invitations.”
  4. “He who leaves the booth early misses golden opportunities.”
  5. “Self-serve giveaways produce no qualified leads.”
  6. “A booth without a clear message draws no visitors.”
  7. “The more multisensory experiences in your exhibit, the longer attendees will interact with staff.”
  8. “She who fills her booth with too many things will have no attendees.”
  9. “The show isn’t over until all leads have been followed up.”
  10. “The worst reason to exhibit is because you think your absence will be noticed.”

And if you follow these ten tips:
11. “Your trade show success will soon increase.”

Here’s to an amazingly successful year!

© 2011 Marlys K. Arnold  (Reprinted from the December 2010 TradeShowTips Online. To receive tips like this in your inbox every month, please take a moment to fill out this request.)


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About the Author:

With experiences as both an exhibitor and a show organizer, Marlys Arnold has a unique perspective on trade show exhibiting. She travels the country consulting and training both exhibitors and show managers, and is the author of Build a Better Trade Show Image (2002), host of the Trade Show Insights podcast and creator of the ExhibitorEd training kit. She can be reached at

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With experiences as both an exhibitor and a show organizer, Marlys Arnold has a unique perspective on trade show exhibiting. As an exhibit marketing strategist, she travels the country consulting and training on how to create experiential exhibits that produce significantly higher numbers of qualified leads. She’s led workshops for events ranging from local consumer expos to some of the largest trade shows in the U.S. She hosts the Trade Show Insights blog/podcast, and is the author of Build a Better Trade Show Image, the Exhibitor Education Manifesto, and the ExhibitorEd Success System. Exhibit Design That Works (the first book in the YES: Your Exhibit Success series) debuted in July 2017. She’s also the founder of the Exhibit Marketers Café, an online education community.

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