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This episode is all about trade shows: which ones to exhibit at, how to put a stand together, what you need to take, what you should be prepping, and how to make the most of the opportunities there.

Who better to have on the podcast to talk us through all things trade shows than Therese Ørtenblad?

Therese is the founder of Small Business Collaborative, and works with product-based business founders who sell to retail stores. She shows them how to price their products for profit, teaches them how to sell in a way that doesn’t feel icky and shows them how to build a strategy with limited time so they can grow their sales and profits through wholesale without feeling alone and overwhelmed.

Therese had to learn how to sell as an introvert and has 14 years of experience heading up sales teams in the home and gift industry. She sits on the National Committee for The Giftware Association, and she’s the host of Let’s Talk Shop, a seasonal business podcast sharing stories and business advice. 

I asked you what you wanted to know about trade shows, and Therese had answered all your questions and then some. Whether you are just starting out or an experienced seller there will be something useful for you in this podcast.

Listen in to hear Therese share:

  • An introduction to herself and her business (01:29)
  • What a trade show actually is (03:12)
  • The benefits of selling at a trade show (04:29)
  • When is the right time in your business to exhibit at a trade show (05:46)
  • Useful things to have on your stand, from knowing your prices to having a catalogue (07:51)
  • How to make yourself memorable to buyers (10:46)
  • How to choose which trade show to attend (12:16)
  • How much to budget for attending a show and fitting out your stand (19:04)
  • The logistics of setting up your stand (20:47)
  • Top tips for displaying your product (24:57)
  • The most important thing people forget to do – get confident with selling (28:20)
  • Should you include your prices on the stand? (31:27)
  • Is it good to take another person or a friend with you to a trade show? (33:06)
  • Legal and insurance legislation to be aware of (34:49)
  • His number one piece of advice for anyone considering exhibiting at a trade show (36:50)

USEFUL RESOURCES:

Small Business Collaborative Website

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Podcast Let’s Talk Shop

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Small Business Collaborative Facebook

Lets Talk Wholesale Facebook Group

Small Business Collaborative Tik Tok

Therese Ørtenblad Linked In

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Transcript
Vicki Weinberg:

Welcome to the Bring Your Product Ideas to Life podcast, practical advice and inspiration to help you create and sell your own physical products. Here's your host, Vicky Weinberg. Today on the podcast, my guest is there, Therese Ørtenblad Founder of Small Business Collaborative. So Therese works with product based business. Founders who sell to retail stores and we have had there on the podcast before talking about wholesale and how to get your products into stores. So today I've asked Therese to join us to talk about another aspect of selling b2b, which is trade shows. I put post on Instagram. A while ago and I also asked in my free Facebook group, and lots of you had questions about trade shows and, um, Therese has really kindly answered all of them as well as some of my own questions, um, which were very basic, I have to be honest. But I really think this is a fantastic episode and if you are even just considering, um, selling at trade shows at some point down the line, I think you'll take a lot away from this conversation. So I would now love to introduce you to Therese so, hi there. Thank you for joining me on the podcast. Again,

Therese Ørtenblad :

thank you so much for having me.

Vicki Weinberg:

Oh, you welcome. So, um, for everyone who hasn't listened to the previous episode, can you please just, um, tell us who you are and what you do please?

Therese Ørtenblad :

Yeah, so my business is called Small Business Collaborative and for the last four years or so, I have been helping small business owners start and grow their wholesale. So anywhere from before you launch your products up till you know you being stocked in the shelves and wanting to expand and sell abroad or what, whatever it might be. Um, I have a background in sales, so. I come from a selling background with it. I know a few people that do similar things come from a buying background, so we have a slightly different take on it. But yeah, I just run courses and do one to ones, um, mainly to, to help businesses grow their business and sales, I guess.

Vicki Weinberg:

That's amazing. Thank you. And I've invited you on today to talk about trade shows because after I attended, actually I know you attended the Top Drawer trade show this Autumn. Um, I've had lots of questions about trade shows, who they're good for, um, all kinds of questions. So, um, I dunno the answers, but I know you do, which is what I've had invited you on. So if it's okay, I'm just gonna run through some of the questions I have and, um, we can chat about.

Therese Ørtenblad :

Amazing. I love trade shows, even if I'm an introvert. Like I know that some people say, Oh, I'm an introvert and don't like trade shows, but I love trade shows. I like to complain when I'm standing there in my back aches. But I like them. So uh, it's a good topic to talk about.

Vicki Weinberg:

Amazing. I've only been to one and yeah, I, I really loved it and I do plan to go to, to more. I just think it's brilliant. Um, so let's start out, this is a. Sounds like a really silly question, but let's start by talking about what trade shows are, just in case there's anyone who isn't in, you know, entirely clear, maybe they haven't heard of a trade show, or perhaps their perception of what it is might be slightly different. So can we start there please?

Therese Ørtenblad :

Yeah, absolutely. I don't think there is this, Such thing as a silly question. It's, you know, if you haven't been, you haven't heard about it, how are you supposed to know? Um, but for our industry it is definitely, you know, a place where you do B2B selling as a business to business. So brands, Exhibit, Exhibit, and they have a stand there and they show their products to retail buyers. There's both large ones that come and visit and small independent shop owners that come and visit, and they are definitely for selling. In some industries it's more like a meet and greet, but in our product based industry, it, you are there to sell. So expect that you will be taking orders if you're going. That should be one of your goals, um, for exhibiting.

Vicki Weinberg:

Amazing. Thank you. So what are some of the benefits of exhibiting a trade show? Why might this be something we want to consider?

Therese Ørtenblad :

I still think, you know, despite all the wholesale marketplace platforms that has popped up the last few years, I still think there's nothing like meeting people in real life, seeing how they interact with your products, getting to speak to them about their business, and there's still no other way. You can meet that many people in such a short amount of time and actually making a real life connection. So I think that is the biggest benefit with them. Really.

Vicki Weinberg:

Amazing. Thank you. And I guess it's also great that you can meet so many people in one day or two days, or however long you exhibit that, can't you?

Therese Ørtenblad :

Yeah. And you meet other brands too, perhaps? Brands that are. You know, new to it like you are. So you can, you, you kind of help and bounce off each other or people with a little bit more experience that you have and you can pick up tips and stuff. So it is a really nice thing to do, um, when you are ready to do it. And I'm, I'm sure we'll talk more about that in a bit.

Vicki Weinberg:

Yeah. Actually let's talk about that now. Let's jump straight in actually. So when is the right time to do it?

Therese Ørtenblad :

So I think that is really, really important that you are ready to exhibit as shows. I think it's really easy to get that FOMO. You know, when everyone goes to Top Drawer for example, it feels like you should have been there and it can kind of become a lot bit like you get pulled in and if you start speaking to show organizers, you get even more like validation for that. You should be there. But I really think that it's important that you, I mean, if you don't have a big budget, if you have a big budget, you can prepare and you can spend money and get help to prepare regardless. So you can exhibit from, you know, when you launch, but if you don't have a big budget, I would. Say that you should start to whole self first and get your first, your stockers first, only because then you know your margins are working, your prices are working, and you're not gonna go to the trade show and exhibit and spend thousands of pounds to be there. And, but for buyers then not to be able to buy from you because you haven't considered your pricing in the right way. So I. Ideally, you have done some wholesale or you've had some help with your pricing margins first and having your products retail ready, because I think it's, it is an investment, so those things needs to be considered before you exhibit. One reason why I started my business actually is because I was exhibiting at shows and I was meeting so many small, amazing brands, but then the retail buyers I was speaking to, they were saying, Oh, but I can't buy from them because they haven't considered VAT. I would lose money if I bought from them. And I was just thinking, it's so sad that there's no one like. You know, helping those people. So that was my whole business idea many years before I started basically

Vicki Weinberg:

Thank you. And as well as knowing your pricing and your margins, is there anything else you specifically have to have to exhibit? So, I don't know, do you need. I dunno if catalog's the right word. What do you need, like a catalog or a price list? Do you need, is there anything else sort of physical you need, we won't talk about sort of setting out your, your share or your space, but in terms of things that you should have to hand or have ready.

Therese Ørtenblad :

Yeah. I am a fan believer in having a physical catalog. I know some lots of brands are moving away from it from a sustainability point of view, a cost saving perspective. But I still don't think there's anything quite like a buyer walking away with some information that is like a magazine of your brand, really telling your brand story, showcasing your products in a way that you can control, not just what they're remembering, if they remember. Um, and there's plenty of buyers that are just as old fashioned as I am, and they do like catalogs. You know, if you have a catalog and you have a price order form that you can give people, there's almost every show I've done, I've given it out on one day. Next day someone comes back with a filled in order form because they sat down with a glass of wine and you know, started, got a head start on their ordering. And I don't think if you give someone a postcard where the QR code, you will get the same.

Vicki Weinberg:

Yeah, I think that makes sense. Thank you. I could, I, and I definitely can see your point about sustainability and why people might choose not to. Um, but I think also cuz I mean, I, cuz I mentioned I was at a trade show a few months ago and I came back, I'm just actually looking at the pile of stuff I came back with, which is walking around and um, a lot of it gets lost if you get a little business card or a flyer. Yeah, it's not quite as appealing as the, you know, the brands who give you like a, even if it's like a, a leaflet and it's just got a bit more information on, on, on there, just a few pages even. Those are the ones that, that to me, like I remembered more. Afterwards.

Therese Ørtenblad :

Yeah. Yeah. And that's what you want, right? You want the buyers to go through all the things that they gathered at the show and remember, you, your business card is not gonna jig anyone's memory about what kind of products you make. You know, Well, at least not if you have the memory, I have You know, you do. And then like you question, will that person go and look you up on your website? Will they go and check your Instagram to remind themselves of who you are or will that be something they intend to do but never quite get around to? And then all the catalogs they go through, and then they spent all their budget. You know,

Vicki Weinberg:

And is there anything else other than sort of having a catalog, is there anything else you can do to make yourself memorable?

Therese Ørtenblad :

I think it's really important to be prepared to sell when you are at the show, not in a sleazy car salesman sort of way, but having practiced how you gonna open up a conversation, How you're gonna make a personal questions that you can ask them to actually get a bit of interaction because it can be a little bit scary in the beginning. You need to be qualifying those people that stop quite quickly. So you don't waste anyone's time. Uh, so I think just by being really well prepared, you can stand out and I think making sure that you have considered how the products will be displayed in the actual physical store. So it's not, you know, it needs to have your brand on there. It needs to, you know, look like they can instantly picture it in their shop instead of. Um, Thinking, Oh, how on earth would I display that in my shop? I think if you've thought about all those things, then you are off to a good start.

Vicki Weinberg:

Amazing. Thank you. And in a moment we'll talk a little bit more about your space and how you might set that out, because, um, I've certainly noticed that there's, you know, there's a real variety in how people choose to kit. Their space and I'm sure you've got some thoughts and some tips on that. Another thing I would love to know before we go into like the logistics is how do you know which trade to choose? Because in our industry there are lots, um, And obviously they cost money, so you, you know, maybe you can't afford to be everywhere, so you, you pick one. Um, how do you know what to choose? And also, is there, sorry, this is two questions, but is there a, a time of year that's, that's better to be exhibiting at? Um, cuz I know for example, Top Drawer have a spring and an autumn. Do you have any thoughts on whether, if someone has, you know, for the, for the year, they have enough budget to do one show? One time a year. Um, what are your thoughts on all of that?

Therese Ørtenblad :

So, spring shows are generally larger than Autumn shows. Um, some more exhibitors, um, Generally, big buyers will start buying. They all work slightly differently, but as a general rule of them, they will start looking at Christmas at their January, February shows. So if you want to deal with large retailers, In a way, and you wanna sell them Christmas, I suppose this spring show would be better for you. But if you don't have any Christmas stuff to show them because you haven't planned out your range a year in advance, then I suppose it doesn't matter because at Autumn shows, people use meet. Also the big buyers looking at next spring and stuff, but you also have retail buyers placing orders for right there and then. So you, I tend to say that you get more long leads in spring shows, you still take orders for spring and all that, but you get slightly more long leads are spring, but you get more shorter ones in the autumn. But that is such a generalization. Um, so it really depends on what kind of brand you are, what season is the best season of time of the year for you, what kind of products you sell, and I guess what's most convenient for you as well. You know, you have a small business areas, it has to fit into your life as well. Um, but yes, I think. Spring or autumn, you can have slightly different experience, but I don't think it's a huge consideration on, um, you know, which one you should choose. I, if you can, I would go and visit them first because it, there's nothing the same, you know, it's not the same as seeing it online. Right? Go and visit a show. See what draws you into people's stand. What stand size do you like? What location do you like? Um, What kind of layouts do you like? You know, you can get a lot of inspiration by going to visit. It's not always possible. So if you can't go and visit, or even you can, might do. Both of these things. Have a look for who exhibited the show. So if brands that are are stocked in your retailers that you already supply, are they at those shows? Because that might be an indication that that's the right show for you. Or ask your retail buyers, which shows they visit, and if you haven't started whole selling yet or you, you are just at the beginning of that journey, then at least look for brands that you want to be stocked alongside that you feel that you have a very similar customer to. And that might be a good place to sort of figure out the show is right for.

Vicki Weinberg:

That's really useful. Thank you. And then I guess it's also like the geographical stuff, because there are shows in London, shows in Birmingham I believe. So I guess it also might come down to where you're located and where you can reasonably get to.

Therese Ørtenblad :

Yeah, there's also quite a lot of smaller regional shows. I would say that they have not been as busy. As they used to be. So the bigger shows in London and Birmingham are probably more popular now, but you can also think out, even in London and you know, Birmingham, they, you can think outside the box. Like I have a greeting cards, uh, publisher that I work with and she mainly sells to like Farm Shops Delis so she hasn't done like Top Drawer but she did the Farm and Delhi show instead. And, you know, she's one of the few card publishers there. But she, she knows her audience. That is really interesting. Then I, I imagine there are other sort of, sort of shows specific to certain types of retail. Are there, so I don't know, news agents, so I can't think d you know, different. Yeah, of course. There's different, different niches like Lee, which is more for garden centers and that sort of thing. Of course, garden centers also visit the general trade shows, so, you know, It depends on which one you wanna do. That's pet ones. If you make dog toys or you know, if you make children's like baby things and children's stuff, maybe it's better for you to go to Playtime In Paris instead of doing, you know, trying to fit into more a general area, a Top Drawer, for example. So, you know, those are the sort of things I think are really. It's easier to figure out if you can visit first.

Vicki Weinberg:

Thank you. I agree. I think like if you've got the time to walk around and just see Yeah. What, I just think it's such so inspiring, isn't it? Just walking around and seeing what people are doing, what they're exhibiting, how they set their spaces out.

Therese Ørtenblad :

Yeah. And you know, you don't have to rush into it like, I mean, in fact, like I think trade shows is one of the few things I see brands rushing to do early on, and that is like, you know, generally speaking, it's gonna be a minimum of 2000 pounds, probably a bit more than that. More a two and a half, three. Whereas, you know, if they are looking to get some help with their business, they might come to someone like you and me. But you know, they want, most of the time they will have a discovery call first, and we're talking about like hundreds of pounds instead of several thousands pounds. But you know, that will be a considered decision to invest in help, whereas a lot of people go to and book a trade show spending way more money without visiting. And so I would definitely encourage people to visit.

Vicki Weinberg:

Thank you. And talking about money, so there's two to 3000 pounds you created. Is that to have a space or does that include actually like fitting out your space as well?

Therese Ørtenblad :

Yeah, so if you have a small space, I would say all in is probably more like two to three grand for most shows. Uh, sometimes a organizer have like, you know, first time exhibitors kind of sta packages where you get a little bit of furniture, you get, um, maybe you get some lighting or some, uh, you know, a socket plug socket or some something, but, or you might just be getting a shell scheme where it's just a few white walls. So, um, It's good to figure that out beforehand. I would say then to fit out your stand, even if you have some sort of start to stand with a little bit of a table and stuff. I think in most cases, It's gonna be at least 500 quid or something to fit it out plus v t, because unless lighting is included in the stand, that's probably gonna take up at least half of that cost. And you're gonna need some sort of graphics, some shelfing of some type, some storage to hide away, you know, your jacket or your bag or whatever it might be. And, um, Yeah, so, and then you need catalogs on top of that, transport, storage, hotel, food. So it all adds up.

Vicki Weinberg:

It does, and I'd love to talk a little bit about this fitting out your shelves as well, if that's okay. Because when you were just talking then I was thinking, well, logistically it's sounds like quite a job because unless I guess you're in a position where you can do it yourself, um, you maybe you have to find someone to do your lighting, someone to do carpentry, someone to do final graphics. Um, how does that work? Is that something that you, as the exhibitor on charge, you get this space? You have free reign to bring people in or do the shows, have people who kind of do that. How? How does that generally work?

Therese Ørtenblad :

You can rent stuff from the show, but it's generally really expensive and it's much cheaper to source yourself. Basically, the things that you can't rent from the show is things like if you want lighting, and I recommend. Everyone to have lighting. I do not recommend ski, you know, saving on lighting, but there's two ways to do it. Either you rent a plug socket and then you bring your own lights in and or you rent, you know, lighting from them, though. That's something where you can't get away from. You need either or basically. Um, whereas, you know, if you want a table or a chair or some shelves, that is a lot cheaper. To bring yourself and also usually a lot nicer. I mean, I, I've been, been to IKEA a lot of times and come up with very creative ways of using IKEA furniture. Um, but you know, things like Facebook marketplace, even like. You know, use Ikea stuff sometimes, or you know, eBay or that sort of thing. I mean, if you just have cards, for example, it's, you know, you could just get some of those little ledges in home base or b q or if you need to hang something, you could just get like a rod and. Sort of material to hang it or hooks or whatever in, um, the why stores. So I think thinking is a little bit outside of the box can save you quite a lot of money. I mean, definitely bought planter shelves in Amazon, for example, last minute to put stuff on.

Vicki Weinberg:

Thank you. And does it work that like a day or a couple of days before you allowed to go in?

Therese Ørtenblad :

Yeah, generally, so like the biggest stands are allowed to come in earlier, but the ones that, it has a shell scheme, so there's two types of stands in the show. There's space only and shell schemes generally and the bigger show. And those that just do space only, they will ha build their own walls and have like, you know, a contractor do all of that. So they're allowed to go in earlier usually. And then, uh, Shell scheme are usually allowed, you know, one or two days before. Um, if you wanna paint your stand, you need to make sure. It is a traditional build. It's a wooden wall because sometimes they don't do wooden walls, but they have those kind of plastic boards, which you can't paint, Uh, in which case you would have to get the organizers to clad your stand in wood, or you have to bring your own cladding. Um, so there's a lot of things to consider. When you book your stand and how you want it to look, it's also one of the reasons why I think it's so good to visit because you can see what other people have done, you know? Um, it's, it's a good way to learn. And if you go at a quiet time, people are generally really happy to share how they've done something. Cause you're not gonna go and copy exactly what they do. But if you ask, so what do, how did you get that cladding on your stand? No one, very few people would say, Oh, I don't wanna tell you. You know

Vicki Weinberg:

Yeah. Thank you. It definitely sounds like there's a lot to think about, cuz you also mentioned earlier, um, buyers has been able to see how your product would maybe fit in a store. So is, would you recommend that stand, um, you, you lay your products out as they, as they might be in a store, whether that's on a shelf or a card rack, if they're cards, do you recommend going into that level of detail?

Therese Ørtenblad :

Um, if they're cards, I think everyone knows how to display a card. But if you have a product like, um, muslin, I know muslin I know is quite a challenge to like display, so you think, you know, then you might have to consider it. If they are packed in a box, it's obviously a bit easier. But if they're like just with a belly band, you might wanna, you know, showcase how. You know, you might wanna bring, instead of one of that ski product, you might wanna bring six and put them in a basket or hang them on a sh you know, on a hook. If that's how you envision it, to just help buyers picture it in their shop. Um, I definitely think it's good to mock up your display at home somehow and take photos because the first time you set up your first show, you will be faffing a lot more than you think you will be faffing. Um, And everything will take longer than you think it will. So like setting it up at home, taking detailed picture of where things go. That way you can also think, Oh actually it looks a bit empty. Let me bring a couple of extra for there. That sort of thing. So I think practicing and setting it up at home is a good, is advisable. But to be honest, the, all these kind of logistic things, I find small business owners are really good at, like, I see them all figuring it out. It's more that they forget that, you know, what happens during the show and what happens after the show. Because those are the scary bits, right? We get, I dunno, but a lot of us are very good at getting into the detail and you know, envisioning what color wall we will have. But when you start thinking, Oh, how will I sell my products? My buyers come up to me. That's a lot scarier. So people don't prepare for that bit this much. They prefer often out. Well, that's what I've seen anyway.

Vicki Weinberg:

That's really interesting. Thank you. And I hope that's really reassuring. Um, cause I did get quite a lot of questions about shells and logistics, so I hope that's really reassuring everyone on that actually. Um, you've, you've got this, like, that bit will be fine. So I hope that whoever,

Therese Ørtenblad :

I'm confident that most of you will be good at it and, you know, people are happy to share, you know, Of course there's people like me, but other brands that, you know, like that's not copying anyone. Like people are generally quite happy to share where they can, You can get, you know, a bookshelf or whatever it might be. Um, you know, you can get advice on that in Facebook groups and all sorts. Um, but when it comes to the selling and the like, actual reason why you're there. That is something people often figure that they will figure out on the day. So I think it's better, you know, like, I think it's definitely something to consider.

Vicki Weinberg:

and, And on the standing side, are there any, do you have any hints or advice or, or even just things you think people, you could say, Okay, if you've got these things, you're gonna be fine,

Therese Ørtenblad :

Well, the catalog is one thing, but another thing is just, you know, being able to talk about your products. You probably know your products really, really well, but you know, Think about what is important to the buyers. Make sure that it's prominent to what you do, and make it sure that it's easy to look through your range, like having pack sizes and wholesale prices and re recommended retail prices easy to hand so that they can see it If you're busy talking to someone else. Think about what questions you're gonna ask them. Practice them out loud, you know, to find out more about their business. Your follow up can be better. Um, If they kind of stop and glance, like don't just, you know, they don't wanna be pounced, but they also don't wanna be ignored. So you make, make sure you greet people eye contact, smile at them, like a smile goes a long way. Stopping people if you are not that kind of cheeky person, that will stop people in, in the aisles. At least smile people when they walk by in the aisles and they might. Linger slightly longer and then, you know, open up the conversation with a question. Um, and I think a, a lot of creators, that bit is uncomfortable to think about. So I think it's really important to talk about it before a show.

Vicki Weinberg:

Thank you. That is really good advice. And. Yeah, I know for myself, I think I would feel quite daunted if I was in that situation where I'm at a stand and I have to sell to people. So I guess, yeah, but I think to reassure everyone, you know your products so well, you. You, you, you will be fine. There won't be questions as long as you're prepared. There aren't gonna be any questions that you can't answer.

Therese Ørtenblad :

No, absolutely. And if it's something that you haven't heard of, you just like say, Oh, let me make a note of it and I'll get back to you. Or ask them, What do you mean? You know, people are generally quite happy to chat on these things. There's nothing that you can't deal with while you're there and you will get more and more comfortable the more people you speak to, and you will probably find that you'll get more direct with qualifying them when they come to the stand as like they, you know. The show goes on basically

Vicki Weinberg:

Yeah, and I like what you said about asking them questions as well and finding a bit about more them and what they're looking for. Cause I think it can be tempting when you are in like a sales environment to talk about what you have rather than asking the other person, Okay, so where are you from and what are you looking for? And I think a lot bit of that goes a long way as well.

Therese Ørtenblad :

Yeah, for sure. And you know, if you can make notes about it so you can follow, include that in your follow up so that that can be really personal. Even better.

Vicki Weinberg:

Thank you. And something else like you, I, you mentioned this a few minutes ago. I picked up on it cause it was a question I had to ask you. Cause when I was wandering around a trade show, I noticed that. I dunno if it was 50 50, but definitely some of the stands I went to had prices. So you could see the price of each product, some didn't. Do you have a, a view on that?

Therese Ørtenblad :

I prefer prices. It's helpful for the buyer. It's also helpful for you to come across really like, you know, your products because like, unless you have like one price point, inevitably you will get flustered during conversations. So like by having them there. You can say, you know, oh, that's retail, said that the wholesale price is that the pack sizes. That without having to go and look it up on a price sheet and you know, lose too much eye contact or start faffing around with your catalog or your iPad or whatever it might be, but it will make the whole selling process a lot smoother if you have. To hand. Um, I have worked on stands where we don't necessarily have that because, for example, I used to sell books and they obviously have the RRP on the books, so we wouldn't have the cost price there. Also, you have so many books, so it's a bit hard, but you learn the key price points and we would have an iPad system, but it, I much prefer it when it's right in front of.

Vicki Weinberg:

That makes sense. Cause I guess as well, if someone just wants to find out the price of something, but you are tied up cuz maybe there's only, you on the stand then they can still get what they need. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Which also makes me think, as I've said that, and I'm sorry I haven't prepared you for this question, but do you recommend having someone with you if it a trade show or, um, Or that you do it yourself.

Therese Ørtenblad :

I mean, definitely for set up and breakdown. It's nice if you can get some help at the stand. It depends on who's gonna, you know, are they gonna be as passionate about your products? Are they gonna know your products enough? And also, are you, you know, if you get a friend involved, are you guys going to find it more comfortable to stand there and talk to each other instead of being approachable by other people? So it really depends on your personality, I think, and also what, how big of a space you're getting. Um, you know, you will get to know your stand, build the neighbors. If you have to go to loo or go and pick up a coffee, you guys will cover for each other. Um, so you can do it yourself. So it really depends on how you feel more comfortable. But I, I do see people go with a friend and then they sit there and they have very in depth conversation about things that, So that is you. They're not as approachable.

Vicki Weinberg:

That makes sense. I guess it's just a case of knowing yourself and

Therese Ørtenblad :

it's the same as like, you know, do not bring your laptop and sit in front and look down on your laptop the whole time, or on your phone the whole time. That is really not why you're at the show. You're there to meet people, so then you need to be approachable.

Vicki Weinberg:

Thank you. Um, you've shared so many things about exhibiting. Thank you so much. I have just a few more, if that's okay. Yeah. Um, one is, do you need to think about any, um, I'm gonna say legal requirements. Legal might not be the right word. So, for example, do you need any specific insurance? If you want to attend to trade show, for example?

Therese Ørtenblad :

So you will need insurance and the shows won't let you exhibit without it so either. So basically the way they do it, they usually charge you for the insurance and then if you send them your like public liability insurance certificate, they usually credit you. For that insurance. So you never end up paying it. But they need you to have that because legally they may need to check that everyone has it. So you need that. Uh, if you're gonna get someone to help you or you, you know, any during buildup and breakdown, no one under 16 can be in, in. Exhibition hall. So you know, if you think you can get your 15 year old in to help you set up and paint the stand, that's not gonna work. Um, but otherwise, I mean, You don't need much there. Otherwise, it's just, you know, if you have people with you, make sure that you are insured and they are insured to work on the stand and uh, yeah, the public liability. You need to showcase that you have.

Vicki Weinberg:

That's really useful. Thank you. Because I guess if, if nothing else, it's another cost that people may not have thought about. So I did want to check on that. Thank you.

Therese Ørtenblad :

It's a lot cheaper to get it, not get the stand one, but to have it already. And to be honest, if you are at the stage where you are whole selling and you are wanting to wholesale, you should have a public liability insurance anyway, so, You probably have it. Yeah.

Vicki Weinberg:

Thank you. Okay, so I have one final question, if that's okay. And it's quite a big one, so don't worry if you can have you, um, can't think of one, but what is your top advice for anyone considering exhibiting at a trade show? I usually say one piece, but I don't wanna hold you to one if you have more.

Therese Ørtenblad :

Uh, I definitely think practice selling beforehand. Don't forget about the whole selling conversation. Really think about how you're going to be talking about your products if you're unsure. I think it's really worth having some help with it. Um, I know it's one of those things like people think, Oh, I don't wanna spend extra money, but, you know, it is worth being prepared. I. Definitely see a huge difference and the result people get when they haven't had any help and when, you know, people that I worked with for six months leading up to the show or four months before the show in a couple of months after the way they really, you know, focus on the selling. So I definitely think you are there to sell. Make sure that you have a plan for that.

Vicki Weinberg:

That's really helpful. Thank you so much. Um, and thank you for everything you've shared. Cause there's, there's a, there's a lot but I think for anyone even considering a trade show, even if it's a year or two down the line, I think this is so valuable. Thank you so much.

Therese Ørtenblad :

Oh, for sure. Because they can go and visit then. now, you know, even if you don't even wanna do one yet, you know, go and visit one. It's fun.

Vicki Weinberg:

I think so. And I think even if you don't ever intend to exhibit at one, I think it's such a good place for inspiration.

Therese Ørtenblad :

For sure and just to see other people in the industry and, you know, go with another small business owner have, have a day out. It's fun.

Vicki Weinberg:

definitely, I re I, I really enjoys my day. I'm, I'm all for it. I'm recommending that everyone, guys, if they have a chance,

Therese Ørtenblad :

there's also lots of talks and stuff, you know, to go and listen to, like with advice about, you know, running a business. So, definitely. You can get a lot out of going. I don't think it's a waste of day out.

Vicki Weinberg:

I don't. And I should also mention that they are free to attend as well if around.

Therese Ørtenblad :

Yes, they are free. If they're in the UK they're free. Okay.

Vicki Weinberg:

Well thank you so much.

Therese Ørtenblad :

No worries. Thank you so much for having me.

Vicki Weinberg:

Thank you so much for listening right to the end of this episode. Do remember that you can get the fullback catalog and lots of free resources on my website, vicky weinberg.com. Please do remember to rate, um, of you this episode if you've enjoyed it, and also share it with a friend who you think might find are useful. Thank you again and see you next.