Let’s face it. Your exhibit program can only perform to the level of the team members who staff your booth.
Yes, exhibit design, marketing and great demos are important. But a less than satisfactory experience with your staff can undo all of the hard work you’ve done to create a compelling exhibit experience.
The solution is to have a stellar staff—but how? The challenges that plague exhibit managers when it comes to their exhibit staffs range from genius technical experts who are too shy to engage to boondoggling sales professionals that show up late (and hung over).
In 2018, 3D Exhibits client Sunstar implemented a total upgrade of the way it handles its exhibit staff. Despite a score of 2.0 out of 10 for its exhibit staff on a baseline audit, Sunstar was able to elevate its staff performance to score a stellar 8.6 out of 10 on a subsequent audit. Here’s how:
Six Steps to Maximizing Exhibit Staff Performance
1. Design the exhibit for engagement. Sunstar’s previous exhibit strategy placed counters along the perimeter of the exhibit. This created a physical obstacle that made it hard for the staff to engage people in the aisles and deterred people from entering. The new exhibit strategy left the perimeter open which enabled the staff to walk right up to the aisle—or even step into the aisle—to engage.
2. Hand select the staff. Sunstar worked with upper management to select a staff that would take their participation in the show seriously and that possessed the skills it needed in the booth.
3. Assign specific roles to specific staff members. Sunstar recognized that when it comes to engagement, not every team member possesses equal skills. Its solution was to ask its most outgoing team members to engage and qualify. These team members then introduced the qualified visitors to other staff members who were experts in whichever product areas the visitor was interested in.
4. Provide tools. Sunstar integrated touch tables and other technology with drill down content into its exhibit. This ensured that the staffers had information to deal with all levels of visitor interest from high level overview to a deep dive into product details.
5. Train the staff. Sunstar’s full booth staff training included an overview of booth content and practice using the booth technology to ensure that every staff member was comfortable performing their jobs. It also included a review of booth etiquette and best practices in exhibit engagement.
6. Support your inhouse staff with professional booth ambassadors/engagers. In addition to its employees, Sunstar hired a couple of professional booth ambassadors to help engage visitors and to support the staff.
How do you maximize the performance of your exhibit staff?