15 May 2012

Trade Show Trash Test

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Have you ever been to a trade show and seen an exhibit that looked like it had just survived a zombie apocalypse attack?  The booth next to you that is being held together with duct tape and bailing wire.  When I see these booths, I always walk over to the exhibitor and offer my professional services, of course they never need my help.  What I am going to start doing is taking my 2400 watt TradeShowGeek megaphone and yell “Hey, Trade Show Trash… get your single wide off the floor!” I admit that these morons have frustrated me for years.  You know the type; we are all tired of seeing and working with companies that do not really comprehend the value of exhibiting at a trade show.

If you are asking yourself, “Am I Trade Show Trash?  Am I that exhibitor?” Well if you have to ask… most likely you are, no two ways about it Bubba.  If you are too embarrassed to actually speak with a trade show professional, the TradeShowGeek has formulated an extremely scientific test to help find out if your company is truly Trade Show Trash.


To take my test, answer all questions truthfully, no cheating, no looking at your neighbors screen for help and anyone caught cheating will automatically be classified as Trade Show Trash. Here is how we score the test, YES answers are worth 1 point and NO answers are worth 0 points. Keep count.

1. Does your company regularly move more than 1500 LBS of “booth stuff” by hand into a trade show without paying a drayage bill?

2. Does your sales team’s job description include “booth assembler”?

3. Is one of your main tools for setting up your trade show booth duct tape?

4. Do you offer vacuuming services to other exhibitors to increase your ROI?

5. Was your trade show booth built in an employee’s barn?

6. Do you think bringing your own forklift to a trade show to handle your freight actually will work?

7. Have you ever had an entire trade show evacuated because your portable generator set off the carbon monoxide monitors?

8. Do you consider hanging a beat up vinyl banner with bird poop on it a good idea?

9. Is your game plan for electrical paying for it only after being caught stealing it from the booth behind yours?

10. Do you or a team member have one or more missing teeth?

Total your score.

Here’s how the scoring breaks down.

1-2: We all have to do things now and again to get by.  Your company has an understanding of the value of exhibit shows.

3-4: Well there is still hope but you are always going to be in a single wide unless you change your approach.  You need to definitely seek some professional advice for your next show.

5-6: Your company is very cheap; your customers laugh at you behind your back; and you definitely need to seek a professional trade show consultant to help your company today.

7 and above:  You’ve hit the big time; you’re considered true Trade Show Trash, So seriously “Trade Show Trash get your single wide off the floor!”


If you think I am giving you a list of cost saving ideas – You’re Trade Show Trash!

trade show trash

If you’re really Trade Show Trash, please let one of the many professionals in the industry help you with your next trade show.  We beg you. Please! If you don’t, we are all going to be laughing at you, pointing fingers at you and all behind your back.  Don’t believe me; every question I asked above came from one client, Jim. These were all the trashy things he did to try and save a buck.  All he really accomplished is make us laugh and make him and his company look like Trade Show Trash.

Good luck at your next show!

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