Show up. Have energy. And get good real estate.


A few months ago I was at a conference hawking my book.  It was kind of risky on my part, as I had never done that before and there was some expense for the booth.

bartlett2014Day 1, Saturday: I was placed on the second floor hallway of the conference and got some good foot traffic.

Result: Had many conversations and sold [X] books in around 8 hours on the floor.

Day 2, Sunday: On day two the vendors in the key spots on the first floor were packing and abandoning ship hours before the conference ended.  I thought it made the conference not look aesthetically pleasing and that it was kind of rude not to stay for the contracted time, not to mention possible loss of leads or sales.

My traffic on the second floor was also drying up. So I asked the organizer and she let me fold my booth up, move it down to the main floor where I set up in the single best spot in the conference center.  (It had already been abandoned by another vendor.) I could have shut down for the day as others had, but I didn’t.

Result: Had many conversations and sold [.5*X] books in around 2 hours on the floor. In other words, I sold 2x as many books per hour and generated 50% of the revenue I did on day 1, in 1/4 of the time.

Lessons abound here, but they are fairly obvious and left to the reader.

Have a great day,


P.S.  I lied.  Here is a list of lessons:

  1. Pay for a good location.  The ROI is real.
  2. Smile and greet EVERYONE no matter what.
  3. If you need to text or do email at the booth, you shouldn’t be there.  Step away and get someone else to man the booth if you have an emergency email.
  4. Don’t sit (unless it is medically necessary). Standing at the booth gets more traffic.
  5. Start a demo or your patter even if nobody is standing there yet. Almost always, when you start talking, people will congregate.
  6. SHOW UP.  Be there.  Don’t leave.  Your biggest sale may come at the quietest moment.