Blink – it’s the first one that counts

What does your exhibit staff do to enhance, detract or destroy your organization’s image?

When I was at IBS in Orlando in January, I was reminded of what Malcolm Gladwell, in his blockbuster book Blink said. In a blink of the eye we make “snap decisions” on our perception of people, places and things. When our staffs look unapproachable by clustering together sharing the results of the latest NFL game or virtually ignoring show visitors, they are instantly detracting from the value of their brand.

We approached an exhibit where the staff were more interested in “playing” with their computers than engaging the audience. They missed 45 possible prospects in less than 5 minutes. One of whom might be their next best customers.

Our experience is that one ignored, most attendees will not come back. The perception created was that company was not interested in their business. Further they may think, “maybe that is what it will be like doing business with them.”

Being open and approachable is the first step. Making eye contact, smiling, verbally welcoming vistiors and then a nice firm, but not bone crushing, handshake says, “we value you!”

Don’t make that first impression one that shuts out the possibilities of future business.

What you going to do or say at your next preshow briefing to make that “blink” a positive one?

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