Trade Show Ideas?

Aug 10, 2007

  1. AgentDan
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    AgentDan New Member

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    I am a newer agent and am looking at setting up a booth at some of the tradeshows in our town. Has anyone done this? If so, has it been successful? Any ideas on how to set up a successful booth would be appreciated? Also, has anyone provided quotes on the spot? Finally, I was thinking of doing a raffle in order to collect contact info; does anyone have any experience with a good raffle item?

    Thanks for your help.
     
    AgentDan, Aug 10, 2007
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  2. The New Guy
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    The New Guy Guru

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    What kind of questions do you have? I use to promote small shows, 50 to 125 booths, and have sold products, not insurance, at many large shows 500 plus booth shows.
     
  3. AgentDan
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    AgentDan New Member

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    I am looking at getting a booth at the local "Home Idea Show". I know of one other insurance agent who will have a booth representing a different company. I have never worked a booth before. I would like to promote my agency at the show and maybe have a raffle. I am looking at ideas for the raffle gift and would use the entries as leads to contact about giving quotes.

    Some of the other trade shows (boat, RV, motorcycle) in my area have waiting lists to get a booth. All of the shows have insurance agency booths.

    I want to find out how successful these shows are at getting quality leads. Any suggestions on what has worked at getting leads and what has not would be appreciated.
     
    AgentDan, Aug 10, 2007
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  4. somarco
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    somarco That Medicare Guy

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    Trade shows can work if you have the right product, the right "attraction", the right market and a lot of money. I know agents that have worked trade shows before with marginal results. The shows they worked were geared towards entrepreneurs looking for a new business. They marketed mostly health insurance but also had information on dental, vision, disability & life.

    You will get a lot of tire kickers. Folks who just want a quote (on the spot) and a handful of real prospects.

    Depending on the foot traffic, type of client, etc I would say if you can do it all for less than $1000 and afford to blow all of that with nothing to show for it then give it a shot. If you spend much more than that I doubt you will get the kind of return you need and could end up just throwing the money away.

    One shot deals are hard to make money on. For a lot less you can print up some business cards and spend a day going door to door and get more business than sitting in a booth all day wondering if you are going to earn enough to at least get your investment back.

    Rather than spending 1 - 2 days per month sitting in a trade show, spend that time calling on businesses and pocket your savings in advertising costs or spend it elsewhere.
     
    somarco, Aug 10, 2007
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  5. Crabcake Johnny
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    Crabcake Johnny Guru

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    Depends. I've done and will still do the small community-based ones. Some of them just last half a day and can cost as little as $250. If you really want to do well hit Health Fairs. The last one I hit was from 8am to 2pm and cost me $150 - I got three deals so I think that's worth it. Problem is there isn't too many of 'em around.

    I'd stay away from the extremely larges ones that run all day Sat. and Sun. I've done two of them and that's about the right number before you start to average out your time (one was set-up at 7am - I left at 11pm) and an overwhelming majority of people are there just for something to do and giveaways. Don't forget the cost of your display and giveaways. You might get a fews deals - I did - but average out your time and expense and the guy operating the sour cream gun at Taco Bell made more.

    And heck, at least I was selling health and had "some" traffic. A few booths down from me was life insurance guys and they might as well have had the plague.
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2007
  6. Newby
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    Newby Guru

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    I've done one that was pretty successful. I rented a backdrop that folded up and set-up real quick and easy. Had some large focal pictures made up and lined it with various brochures.

    Had candy to give away. Mine was in November so I stocked up an leftover candybars from Halloween. They were a huge draw for the seniors.

    I had a small TV/VCR combo (this was 10-years ago) playing a video on. The TV/VCR was my register to win prize and did well. You can easily make Powerpoint slideshows that will play over and over on the DVD/TV combos now days.

    Main thing is draw them in the booth. Chat a moment and get their names to follow-up. Have something that EVERYONE will sign up for. Grocery store gift certificates are good also.

    Good luck!
     
    Newby, Aug 10, 2007
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  7. Crabcake Johnny
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    Crabcake Johnny Guru

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    If you have Norvax you could have two laptops with WiFi and people could run and print out their own quotes.

    On a side note, it's interesting which carriers won't give you a lot of promotional material and which will.
     
  8. midwestbroker
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    midwestbroker Guru

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    I agree with John. I am all about the health fairs. The other shows, while seniors will be there (that is my market) are not there to find out about insurance. You may spark interest in a few people, but you could have done the same with a mailing.

    Now, if you are selling home owners insurance, then I would think a home show would work, since they are relative. You should also have some sizzle (win a prize, little give aways, etc).
     
  9. Crabcake Johnny
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    Crabcake Johnny Guru

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    The downside with health fairs is depending on the ad campaign there can be lacking turn-out. I did one last year and just over 100 people turned out - over a 6 hour period of time! The best ones are sponsored by local hospitals and have free wellness exams, free wellness kits and free HBP exams and are heavily promoted. Some of the dinky ones aren't really worth it - held normally at local fire halls and poor community advertising.
     
  10. Sam
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    Sam Founder Administrator

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    Try the baby fairs for new and expectant parents. That is a great demographic.
     
    Sam, Aug 10, 2007
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