I know we have said this before but we are saying it again because it is, by far, the #1 leading cause of disgruntled exhibitors. No, it’s not the food (although that’s important!).
Please, I beg of you, do not inflate your attendee numbers by adding staff and speakers to the attendee list. It leads to “negative nancy” conversations on the show floor.
If your exhibitors arrive at a conference expecting to see a lecture hall and exhibit hall filled with 600+ attendees but they only see about 200, they are going to be upset. Not because there are only 200; they are upset because they staffed their booth and sent sample and promo quantities and literature based on the numbers they were given. They established sales goals and expectations based on the numbers they were given.
Believe me when I tell you this – exhibitors would rather you tell them there will be 200 attendees and there actually BE 200 attendees than to be given misleading information. Best to be completely honest – underpromise, overdeliver.
Plus, we’ve noticed something interesting is happening since conferences have come back… very much like 40 is the new 20 (take it from me), 200 is the new 800. We’re seeing that the meetings with 200-400 attendees are providing a better experience and return on investment for exhibitors than the much larger conferences with 800 or more attendees. Lately, it’s much more about quality over quantity.
-Ann Dosen