Are we ignoring younger exhibition visitors?

We visited Autosport International. It’s the ‘go to’ exhibition for car aficionados and our own Guy Wenham was raring to visit as a racer himself.

As well as going for his own enjoyment, we also set him with a few missions. We asked him to measure how long it takes for on-stand staff to approach him – a young guy aptly named Guy – versus someone older with ‘MD’ on his badge.

On three stands, it took an average of 1 minute 3 seconds for Guy to be approached, compared to the MD, which took 38 seconds.

This tells us a little about prioritising visitor’s on-stand and suggests that staff are de-prioritising young visitors versus those with suspected higher purchasing power.

Deprioritising younger visitors

When you’re really busy, this may seem like a sensible decision for most exhibitions. Opt for the people with buying power, who are going to be more likely to follow through on a lead.

But is that right or is it an outdated view?

With younger team members, interns and apprentices being sent out to exhibitions to meet potential new suppliers on behalf of their managers, should we really be ignoring younger visitor’s on-stand?

Should we be making them wait for nearly double the amount of time? Or are businesses missing out on potential leads by making them wait too long?

Value of younger visitors

They may have youthful grins and not be as experienced as more senior members of the team but what they do have is excitement.

New in the industry, they’re eager to make their mark, to help their teams make great decisions. That includes scoping out new suppliers, which could be you.

By ignoring less senior members on a whim that they don’t have buying power, businesses could be missing out on leads.

They may not hold the purse strings themselves, but if they don’t bring your brand back to the table then you may not even be in with a shot.

Next steps…

We’re on a mission to find out whether the above findings are true at the next event Guy attends by visiting more stands.

Stay tuned for our findings. But in the meantime, if you're starting to plan for exhibition season, take a minute to think about whether you’d treat younger visitors to your exhibition any differently with the above in mind.

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