If you like to walk, this is the show for you! Seriously, if you want to get some major exercise, I would definitely recommend traveling to Chicago and visiting Neocon. Neocon is a very large and busy show. This year, EFI had a great representation of our products by many of the various office manufactures with showrooms. We made a choice that for us, it is more productive and beneficial to not exhibit and spend time walking (Check out the HD Expo 2014 review for helpful tips about whether to exhibit or walk the show). I have listed a few helpful tips and reasons why you might not want to exhibit.
Neocon is spread across 6-7 floors within the Merchandise Mart which is a very large building in itself. I would definitely spend the time researching two things:
a. Existing clients to visit
b. Potential clients to visit
c. Any other interesting Things you may would like to see
2. Organize by Floor
Once you have your list of showrooms and booths you would like to visit, organize by floor. It is very easy too get caught in the trap of “Oops, they are on the 11th floor”. The Merchandise Mart is huge and even though they have several banks of elevators, not all of them are used for Neocon, so you spend quite a bit of time waiting for elevators (or taking the stairs). You have to implement the following scenarios in order to master the Neocon elevators.
a. “Go Up To Go Down”
b. “Go Down To Go Up”
If you can master these two scenarios, you will be just fine. To eliminate the wasted time of waiting for elevators, ORGANIZE YOUR LIST BY FLOORS!
Reasons Not To Exhibit
1. Decision Makers are at the Show
This show is such a big deal to the office and corporate industries that most of the key players are there onsite and confined to their booth. The key is knowing who to talk too in order to get some of their time. When EFI exhibited in prior years, we found that getting these key decision makers to our booth was nearly impossible. So, we decided it is better to go find them.
2. Book bag and Samples
We have spent lots of time creating a sample program ideally made for situations like these. Something small and compact, but gives the potential customer an idea of what they can do with that new product they are holding. Throw them all in a book bag and you have a traveling showroom (in a sense).