Big crowds are the goal at most trade shows, right? It means you’ve got something exciting—something in-demand, on-trend and valuable to trade show goers and the businesses and goals they’re working for.

But what if you don’t have the big staff to handle that big crowd once they come? Will they turn around and head toward competitors? Will they think your firm isn’t equipped to handle their needs or their business?

It’s easy to worry about these things, but as long-time trade show exhibitors ourselves, we know this isn’t the case. Though staff size does impact your abilities on the floor, it’s not the only tool you have in your arsenal.

Are you looking to maximize your results using minimal staff on the trade show floor? Here’s how to make it happen.

Making It Work With Minimal Staff

Just because you can’t afford a 20-person staff doesn’t mean your next trade show outing won’t be a success. It just means you’ll need some careful planning, a well-honed strategy and some seriously effective displays in order to do it.

Just follow these steps:

1. Use your displays wisely

If you’re going to have minimal staffers on site, then your displays need to carry their weight. They need to be informative, attractive and, most importantly, interactive. These components will keep visitors engaged while your limited staff is otherwise occupied.

Think of your displays as extra staff members. How can they help you capture and convert more leads? How can you use them to keep visitors in the booth longer, so they can learn more about your products and services?

2. Make your booth an experience

Don’t rely on handouts and sales pitches from your team if you’ve got a limited staff. Instead, make your booth an experience that takes visitors on an independent journey through your offerings.

Maybe they enter at the front, see a video product demo, venture into a life-sized version of your products or services and, finally, pick up a brochure with details, pricing and ordering information. You should also be sure to include a lead capturing station at the exit—somewhere visitors can put in their name and email address for future communication.

3. Provide creature comforts

Make your crowds comfortable—especially if they’re going to be waiting around to talk to your staff. Provide comfortable couches and seating, complimentary water bottles and snacks, and maybe even a charging station where they can re-up their phone or tablet while they wait. The more relaxed they are, the longer they’ll wait to talk to you.

4. Gamify your booth

Get the whole crowd engaged with a little competition. Have them snap photos and upload them to social media using a branded hashtag or ask them to find certain items within your booth (like a scavenger hunt) and turn them in for a prize. You can also create your own mobile app or game to keep visitors occupied while your staff is unavailable.

Small Staff? Small Problem!

At Exhibit Options, we know that bringing your entire team to your next trade show just isn’t an option—but that shouldn’t limit how successful your booth can be. Want help ensuring your expo displays do most of the heavy lifting for you? Contact us today for help.