Be punctual - Observe the exhibition
opening hours. You never know when an important potential client
may arrive. Also arrive early on the set-up date in order that
the South African Pavilion can be finalized early and not at the
Be present on your stand - When this
is not possible ask one of the Trade And Investment South Africa
representatives present on the stand to man your booth for this
time, to take messages and hand out your brochures/visiting cards
Dress appropriately - The appearance
of yourself and your staff is very important.
The appearance of your staff is very important. If they are
dressed in an inappropriate manner, are untidy or look as
if they do not belong at a trade fair, this will certainly
discourage people from wanting to discuss with your company. You
have to consider the image you are trying to create? It is one of
openness, professionalism, honesty, fitness, outdoors etc., and
then dress accordingly. Clothing worn should be comfortable and
cleanliness is of the utmost importance. Keep in mind the staff
members will be standing on their feet for most of the day, and
therefore comfortable shoes should be worn. Not too much jewelry
should be worn as it could be off putting during a presentation,
especially if it tends to jingle around one's wrist. Hair
should be neat and clean.
Be an ambassador - Not only for your
firm but also for your country to visitors to our pavilion. Do
not criticize our country to visitors. This creates a very bad
image and can have adverse publicity for our country and for
other exhibitors on the pavilion and perhaps lead to deals being
lost, including for your firm.
Do not drink and eat on your stand -
This creates a particularly bad image for the whole pavilion. A
bar/entertainment area is provided where you may offer your
guests/visitors to the stand a coffee, juice or glass of South
African wine. A South African evening or cocktail party will also
be organized and will offer you the opportunity to invite your
Be aware of your body language - Body
language speaks a thousand words, and most people destroy any
potential business because of unfavorable body language. The
signals you give to people at an exhibition make or break a sale.
The following are useful tips on how to
Always approach a person from the Front, if
this is not possible then from the side but never from behind.
Physical contact should be avoided. Do not
shake hands unless a hand is offered to you first.
Never stand with your back to the entrance of
the stand or aisle.
Allow for breaks, especially if the trade
fair is not busy, this will prevent boredom, as an unenthusiastic
person will chase away potential clients.
If standing, stand upright with your hands
comfortably at your sides; never fold your arms across your
chest. Posture is very important, it tells a lot about a person.
If sitting, then sit upright, and look busy,
do not stare vacantly into space.
Look interested and friendly and
Avoid talking to fellow staff members by
grouping together on a stand, this may lead people to believe
that they are intruding on a private conversation.
If a visitor walks onto your stand,
acknowledge them in a friendly manner. Do not rush up to them,
allow them sometime to focus on your products and then, and only
then should they be approached.
Greet them in a warm and friendly manner, it
is a good idea, particularly if you are participating at an
international trade fair to greet them in Sotho for example, this
creates interest and an opening for further dialogue.
Always be welcoming and assertive not
Do not invade someone's personal space;
keep your distance.
Whilst making conversation, keep eye contact
throughout, this creates trust.
Give your full attention throughout any
conversation. Do not look over the person's shoulder or gaze
aimlessly above their heads.