3 Tips to Maximize Customer Interactions at Exhibits


I represented the agency’s tourism office at the Ohio State Fair this past weekend. What a ride (in a literal and figurative sense). We discussed our strategies and goals to ensure consistent messaging.

At the fair, we presented our newest calendar of events, hiking maps, and travel guides. Some tech-savvy users download the app on-site. We received more than 1,500 app downloads, in part, because we engaged the customers.

Our goal was to make sure everyone enjoyed the exhibit and spread the word.

Nielsen reports 92 percent of consumers believe recommendations from friends and family over all forms of advertising.

Customers’ words have power. Here are some tips to help them work to your advantage.

Tips to connect:

Remove obstacles: Try to make eye contact and speak to everyone you can. Smile. Be pleasant. Staring at your phone or checking your watch could hinder your potential to communicate. Body language speaks volumes. Show others you enjoy what you’re doing.

Keep your space clutter free. Unorganized giveaways or literature can lose their apparent worth. Explain to the customer the value of what they’re receiving. They are more likely to want to keep it.

Be resourceful: Arrive early to meet with other exhibitors. Share some information about your agency. The relationship could become mutually beneficial.

Attempt to connect with everyone. Ask the customer how you could be of service. You may or may not have the ability to meet their immediate needs, but you won’t know until you ask. Try to lead them in the right direction. They will appreciate your willingness to assist.

Have a venue map to show customers in case they have questions. A prepared civil servant is more likely to be a confident one.

Leave a positive impression: We are the face of our agency. Great service should be embedded in our work DNA. Our team had a prize wheel, social media station, and live music. Some customers visited our area more than once because they had a pleasant experience.

Help everyone to feel important. Face-to-face meetings are rare — make those moments count.

Camille Doty is part of the GovLoop Featured Blogger program, where we feature blog posts by government voices from all across the country (and world!). To see more Featured Blogger posts, click here.

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