Posted March 19th, 2009 by Catalyst
Tradeshow Sales Guy: "You've been using ABC Exhibit house for 10 years, that is quite a track record. I assume you are awfully happy with whatever they are doing for you?"
Tradeshow Exhibitor: "We are THRILLED with ABC Exhibits. They are the Best!"
Tradeshow Sales Guy: "Hmm. What is it that is so great about ABC? What do they do that is so much better than anyone else?"
The likely answer to that question might catch newcomers to the trade show world off-guard. It is not how impressive the trade show designs are. Their prices are probably higher than some of the competition. And no one will immediately rave about what high quality their exhibit house provides. More than likely, it comes down to three things:
[more after the break]
1. "They always know what shows we are doing, and when to schedule the work to get the job done."
2. "They routinely 'save the day'; last minute changes and other actions that reflect that they genuinely want to keep their clients exhibit program going strong through whatever hurdles may appear."
3. "They are Part of our Team!"
Plain and simple, point number three is the most important. The Account Manager plays the greatest role in ensuring a cohesive and dynamic relationship exists between the trade show exhibitor and the exhibit booth provider. Essentially, the Account Manager is the key player who ensures that the exhibit selling process in not bi-polar. A "bi-polar exhibit sale or rental" goes like this: Sales finds the client. Sales, Design and Client Collaborate. The booth is designed, and sold. Sales hands the contract over to the fabricators. Sales goes back to selling. What happens in this scenario?
The fabricators look at the design, shake their heads, then build a booth based on the provided guidelines. They ship the display to the show and the client PANICS! The minute changes that happen between the original conception of the trade show display, and its fulfillment, constitute an ocean of change for the exhibitor. Without the Account Manager's care, discretion and communication, the process is not a participatory one wherein the client is involved in the Exhibit's evolution. There will always be conflicts between designs and fabrication. The "devil is in the details" they say. The long lasting relationship demands that the exhibitor knows what to expect at every turn. The exhibit house effectively resolves whatever obstacles rear their ugly heads, and the client knows everything is under control. A short lived relationship invariably follows the bi-polar model. The Account Manager is the glue that brings everything and everyone together. They are the meds that keep us all happy.
Contributed by Alex Goldie from Catalyst Exhibits: www.Catalystexhibit.com
What other benefits come from Account Managers at Exhibit Houses? What good experiences have you had with Exhibit House Account Managers?