How to get started with Conference Management Software: Part Two – Open Trade Show Sales

As was seen in the first issue of this series, navigating through the myriad of event technology choices can be one of the toughest assignments a meeting professional can face. Just breaking down the possibilities into categories can be a daunting assignment itself. A helpful way to approach this problem is to see how software can be utilized at the various stages of the event lifecycle. Many activities for next year’s show begin right after the current one ends. To keep things simple, we will look at the lifecycle from the point of view of an association’s annual conference.

This week we will look at opening up your trade show sales.

Selling Your Booths

Many shows want to start selling booths for next year’s show as soon as the current one ends or even at the trade show itself. Exhibitor management software makes it easy to start tracking sales. There are several ways you can configure this software when sales open:

  • Online floor maps where exhibitors can literally click on the desired booth, fill out the form and make the payment. Advanced trade show software supports various payment options including deposits.

  • If your floor map is not ready or you do not wish exhibitors to choose their booth, high quality software allows payments via stand-alone purchase forms. It would then be up to you to accept or decline the exhibitor, as well as moving them to the ultimate booth location.

  • The best exhibitor management software will have a very robust back-end administrative system. If you are still finalizing last year’s show and cannot get a form on the air, you can still record the purchases manually and then organize the booths at a later time.

Premium online trade show and exhibitor management software can double as sponsorship administration tools, allowing you to create the custom packages you need.