Companies, large and small, allocate substantial funds from their annual marketing budgets to showcase their products and services at various trade shows. The great thing about trade shows is that for the most part, you have a captive audience interested in what you have to sell. The downside is that putting on a successful trade show exhibit isn’t cheap. Massive banners, custom tablecloths, giveaway items, business cards and corporate brochures are just a few of the expenses necessary to pull off a memorable exhibit. But, the one thing many companies often forget to consider is the dress and presentation of the representatives working behind the booth.
You only get one chance to make a first impression. A company can spend thousands of dollars on a spectacular-looking trade show booth only to have that priceless first impression ruined by a slovenly dressed employee. It may seem common sense that employees should be neat, well-groomed and dressed in line with your company’s brand vision, but sadly that’s not the case. The answer to this problem is a well-documented trade show dress code. What should a foolproof trade show dress code include?
Prepare for Comfort
Trade shows generally mean long hours of standing on your feet. Your staff should come prepared by bringing comfortable shoes, and shoe cushion inserts for extra protection. They should choose shoes that are well broken in as new shoes can cause pain and blistering. Today’s fashion offers many shoes that are comfortable and suitable for business suits as well as business casual. High heels are obviously problematic for most women, but fortunately, there are many fashionable flats shoes that fit any occasion and will save feet and joints hours of discomfort.
Think About Your Audience
For some industries, casual wear, piercings, and tattoos are not only appropriate representations of a company’s image, but they are also expected. However, most industries lean toward a more traditional brand image. If your company is not a fitness company, maybe your employees should leave the yoga pants at home. Is your ideal consumer or prospect expecting to see your staff in business suits, polo shirts, and nicely pressed slacks? Don’t disappoint them. Your attire should be an extension of your company’s brand, not a distraction.
As a corporation, go ahead and make the investment and purchase the nicest quality shirt or dress materials, and then brand with your logo in a tasteful way. Stay away from the unisex clothing trap. When ordering clothing for ladies, spring for the female cut. The female cut may cost a bit extra, but they will fit your female employee better and make your company look like it means business. If you don’t provide branded clothing, be sure to provide photos with descriptions of what clothing is and is not acceptable. Better safe than sorry.
The Money is in the Details
So now, your trade show staff knows what to wear and what not to wear. But, there are few more things your dress code should also include:
- Jewelry – Keep it simple. The focus should be on the exhibit.
- Belt Buckles – These should be stylish and classy, not big and bulky.
- Shoes – Make sure they shine and aren’t scuffed.
- Belts – If at all possible, your belt should match your shoes.
- Fingernails – Your nails should be neat and preferably manicured.
- Hair – It goes without saying that your hair should be clean and tidy.
- Fragrances – Keep these to a minimum.
Implement a clear trade show dress code to make sure your walking billboards (your staff) are presenting your brand in the best light possible. Let your staff know exactly how you expect them to look and conduct themselves when representing your company. The beauty of having a trade show dress code is that you are free to focus on the most important things…attracting new prospects and reconnecting with current clients. For more information, contact Langham Logistic today at (855) 214-2844.