Cut through the crazy


It’s not a ‘jolly’; it’s jolly hard work.

Get to airport, luggage, check in, check phone, do security, pass duty free, check phone, board, fly, disembark, check phone, do security, luggage, get to hotel, check in, eat, drink, check phone, explore, call home, sleep, get suited, check phone, visit exhibition, walk, talk, look, coffee, walk, talk, look, go to conference, check phone, coffee, walk, talk, meetings, meetings, meetings, check phone, grab lunch, walk, talk, look, check phone, back to hotel, change, eat, drink, socialise, back to hotel, check phone, drink, check phone, sleep, start again.

Attending an exhibition can be exhausting.

So how can we interrupt the pace and pressure to fully engage with relevant visitors?

Unfortunately – and unsurprisingly – there is no magic bullet answer to this question. Instead, there are lots of little ideas that together make a big difference.

Critical Non-Essentials

Have you ever heard of ‘Critical Non-Essentials’ (CNEs)? CNEs are all about the small things that make a big impact to your target audiences. Your coffee is first rate. Your stand staff is well-presented and know your product inside out. They are charming. They greet visitors with appointments by name and can take them to their meeting room with ease. The array of snacks on offer is surprising and yummy. The opportunity for visitors to charge their phones is welcome. The seats are comfortable. The lighting flattering and appropriate. Visitors’ physical and emotional needs are recognised, responded to and met.

Not any one of these individual things will clinch the deal, create the best conversation, nor impress the visitor. You’ll have to do these yourself but perceived indifference is fatal; the aggregated impact of taking care of CNEs will absolutely give your stand visitors the perception of quality and care.

Systematise’ the little things

You’ll have an instinct for this already but do get fresh ideas from the experts: the people who do the work. Your stand, security, ticketing and hospitality teams will have loads of ideas to help create an oasis of calm on your stand, offering visitors the space to think and experience all you have to offer, before, during and after your event.

Could you send a care pack to your visitors before they even leave their home? It could contain a cityguide and visit planner plus a chill kit (eye mask, earplugs, calming eye balm?).

How could technology help? You could provide one wificode for everywhere at the exhibition hall and anapp so they have key information at their fingertips, including videos of presentations and slide-decks once they’ve returned to the office.

What about a Twitter list – or a Spotify playlist? How could you help them plan high quality downtime (the coolest bars and drinks, the best restaurants, the ‘must-see’ stuff

Help deliver an incredible customer experience

Considering your visitors’ CNEs, will create a welcome interruption to the craziness of a large-scale event. You’ll be able to pause together, have an effective dialogue and nurture your relationships. Afterall, it’s the little things that count.