Review from the Summit: Shows & Events
Joe Talmon is President of Larmco Windows – an Ohio based company. He is a 22 year veteran of the window and home improvement industry. He transformed a small regional wholesale window manufacturer into a respected retailer of high end replacement windows, siding and other products. His passion is quickly uncovered when you hear him speak about one call selling, sales training, and working shows and events.
He began his presentation by discussing the first event that his company held, at the Marion Count Popcorn Festival. Despite getting to the event late, and not getting a prime spot in the show they were able to be successful because they stuck to their strategy, “No-one walks by the booth without being stopped.”
The results of the event were very encouraging (and a sign of greater things to come):
In 4 days (Thursday through Sunday) they set nearly 80 leads and sold just under $80,000 the first week after the event. Their overall costs were under $2000.
Two keys that Mr. Talmon learned early on were that:
- People do not attend the homeshow or event to see what your company has to offer, they are there for their own reasons
- Their competition was not just the other companies in their category. There may be 200 to 1,000 vendors and every one of them wants the same thing you want – the attention of the people who attend.
Once he had this down pat he was able to develop an effective action plan to succeed:
- Have the right people working with the right approach
- Make sure everyone is trained and knows their single purpose
- Have the presentation scripted
- Develop an interruption/attraction device
- Hold a kick off meeting the day before the event
- Have a practice session each day before the event opens
- Manage the approach – fun is always a good thing
One of his most recent event demonstrations is quite astounding. Note how the attendees are flocking to his booth in droves. Meanwhile, many of the other company’s reps look on with bored and disinterested expressions as people walk past their booths one by one.