WHY DO YOU EXHIBIT AT AMTS?
“We’re able to see more customers in two days than we’re able to see in several months of setting up appointments and visiting customers. They’re away from work, they’re relaxed, and they’re willing to spend some time to get to know us a little better and see some of the quality products we’re manufacturing.” ~ Steve Staub, Staub Manufacturing Solutions
“I’ve been exhibiting at AMTS for over 13 years. I come back because no matter how many sales people I have, or how much marketing I do, I don’t know about every deal that goes down in my territory for my products. And every time I’ve been at the show I have found prospects who are making decisions about my products that I didn’t know existed. Here, they get to see the new product, I get face time instead of phone time, and it works much better… it’s a much more effective use of time for everyone.” ~ Kurt Freimuth, reThink Engineering
“Every year there are opportunities, and for us they usually materialize within the week after the show. I see a lot of customers in a really short period of time, and it’s our chance to reconnect with them. They actually count on us being here… it’s more convenient for them than a sales call.” ~ Larry Gray, American Heat Treating
“Do you know the average cost of a sales call? If I look at my cost of this show and compare to the two or three thousand contacts I touch during that time, that’s the cheapest sales medium I know of.” ~ Greg Knox, Knox Machinery
WHAT’S THE QUALITY OF ATTENDEES? WHO ARE THEY?
“There are people here who are presidents or owners of companies, there are engineers, programmers, and people that work on the shop floor that make recommendations on what they need or what they use. I think it’s a group of quality people. We’re reaching decision makers, and that’s what it’s all about.” ~ Jerry Kronenberger, Dayton Supply & Tool
“We’re getting presidents, mid-level managers, and the guys in shipping and receiving on the floor. In my opinion, the companies that are excelling are the ones that give the employees the power to see and find the equipment they need to make themselves more productive. Those are the guys that we’re seeing coming to the show. Those are the kind of guys that we want to talk to.” ~ Ed Blake, Bohler Uddeholm
“You not only see buyers and engineers, you see presidents and CEOs—the real decision-makers. We’ve had companies visit us that not only brought management, but also the buyer and engineer—all looking at what we do. They’re discussing and comparing us to their current vendors, and because they had the entire team together, they could make a quicker, more informed decision on who they want to do business within the future.” ~ Steve Staub, Staub Manufacturing Solutions
HOW DO YOU MEASURE YOUR SUCCESS AT A TRADE SHOW?
“I don’t look at success based on number of attendees. I look at success based on the number or value of deals that I close. I could have one guy that walks in that does a million dollars worth of business with me, and that’s a great show, even if there are 4,000 other people that I don’t care about. Here you have the key decision makers, the engineering managers, company presidents, vice presidents… that’s who I want to see.” ~ Kurt Freimuth, reThink Engineering
“Sometimes it isn’t even about capturing the person coming through the show. They may know somebody who’s in need or our services and they pass our card on to them. That’s a benefit that’s hard to measure, but is invaluable.” ~ Chris Small, American Testing Services
“We serve the aerospace, locomotive, military, hydrogen fuel cell, and other high-tech industries, along with food equipment, consumer product and many other types of industries. The great thing about this show is that every year we see people from those industries we currently serve, in addition to new entries in to the market that we wouldn’t have otherwise been aware of. How do I measure the value of that?” ~ Steve Staub, Staub Manufacturing Solutions
“Generally in our industry, you don’t close business in a day. If you’re making tools, if you’re making molds, if you’re making stamping dies…you’re going to need our material throughout the year. So we’re here to establish relationships with folks and keep the sales pipeline full. AMTS is one of the strongest touch points in our sales cycle.” ~ Ed Blake, Bohler Uddeholm
HOW DOES AMTS COMPARE TO OTHER SHOWS?
“We’ve tried national shows and other regional shows throughout the Midwest, and we haven’t found those to be useful for us. We’re serving people within a couple hundred mile radius of the Dayton region, and this show is where those customers go. The price for other shows is considerably higher than AMTS, and we haven’t received as great an ROI.” ~ Steve Staub, Staub Manufacturing Solutions
“I’m based in Cincinnati and I cover Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana territories. The national shows, and some prospect from California, are of no real value to me; I can’t sell to them. Here, everybody who walks into my booth is a prospect of mine, so I get all the leads as opposed to a few of the leads. That’s something I can get only from a regional show.” ~ Kurt Freimuth, reThink Engineering
“We try to keep in people’s faces, let them know we’re here, and there’s no better show to do this than AMTS. So many of our customers, whether they’re in Dayton or whether they’re out of state, come to this show because it’s the only good regional show. They’re not attending national shows.” ~ Chris Small, American Testing Services
“We believe in the Dayton region and in manufacturing. Being at AMTS keeps our industry strong and shows that manufacturing in our region is alive and well, and we want to be a part of that. One of the by-products of the show for us is it gives our sales people an opportunity to be really creative. It creates camaraderie, and that carries over beyond the show.” ~ Jerry Kronenberger, Dayton Supply & Tool
YOU HAVE TO BE WHERE YOUR COMPETITORS ARE…
“I can’t imagine not being at this show with all of our competitors being here, especially when I see the type of prospects that are here… even our existing customers. We might know two or three people at a company, and then when they come to the show there might be four or five or six, so we meet even more. I can’t have my competitors seeing them without me. We’re not going to take that chance, that’s for sure.” ~ Jerry Kronenberger, Dayton Supply & Tool
(While at the 2011 show): “I’ve talked to a number of prospects in the last two days who are buying from people who aren’t at the show, and they’re here at this show talking to me. So that’s a huge reason I keep coming back. I don’t want to have my customers here talking to a bunch of people about products and services I represent without my being here.” ~ Greg Knox, Knox Machinery
“All of my competitors are here; every single one of them. So people looking for software that I sell will have ample options, whether I’m here or not. I want to be part of that mix, or I can’t make the sale. When companies aren’t exhibiting here, you get a lot of questions about whether they’re even still in business. I don’t want people asking that question about me.” ~ Kurt Freimuth, reThink Engineering
ANY ADVICE FOR NEW EXHIBITORS?
“Follow up with people. Sometimes sale cycles are long. Being at the show, if someone has an interest and finds out what we do, it shortens the sale cycle. But, we also realize when going in to a show we don’t expect to have a bunch of new customers and a bunch of new orders that day; it’s just the start of a cycle and we need to make sure we have good planning in place to follow up with those prospects.” ~ Jerry Kronenberger, Dayton Supply & Tool
“We market beforehand to draw people not only to the show, but to our booth specifically. As a result, we have good traffic. I can’t tell you how many people have come in and said, “You’re the guy sending me stuff—thought I’d stop by your booth.” You get out of the show what you put in to it. If you’re not willing to do the work upfront and then follow up afterwards, you’re not going to have very good results. It’s that simple.” ~ Kurt Freimuth, reThink Engineering
“Market yourself at the show. Give them a reason to come. My average ticket sale is close to quarter of a million dollars. So I just don’t have people show up and start buying on a whim. I need to start months before the show, promoting myself or a piece of equipment and enticing them to come see it at the show.” ~ Greg Knox, Knox Machinery
TELL US ABOUT A GREAT OR CRAZY SALES SUCCESS.
“We had one particular customer that casually came through the show and we ended up doing a research project for him that was about $50,000 worth of work.” ~ Chris Small, American Testing Services
“Last year, one guy that I’d never met cruised by, picked up literature and my card, and a week later he called me and sent up work. He wasn’t interested in talking; he got all the information he needed from my brochure. That wouldn’t have happened had I not been at the show.” ~ Larry Gray, American Heat Treating
“I had one customer that had to stop in the middle of the sales cycle a few years back when the economy was down. I hadn’t seen him in a year and a half, and he walked in to our booth, said he came to the show to see me specifically and wanted to renew our sales cycle again. Those things happen a lot.” ~ Kurt Freimuth, reThink Engineering
“We’ve had companies that we’ve called on for years that have come to the show, see our products in person, and realize we offer a higher quality product then they’ve seen from our competitors. Because they saw us here at the show and not just a brochure or just received a phone call from somebody, they were more comfortable ordering with us.” ~ Steve Staub, Staub Manufacturing Solutions
“We’ve definitely had relationships rekindle through the show. As salespeople come and go, sometimes inactive customers drop off our prospect list. An old customer remembered doing business with us years ago and happened to walk by our booth. We hadn’t called on him for years, but because we were at the show we got back in touch and we’re doing business together again.” ~ Brent Mackintosh, Mackintosh Tool Inc.
HOW EASY IS IT TO EXHIBIT AT AMTS?
“I could see from the very first year that DRMA took over that AMTS was a better show. I’ve found there to be more value, I found them easier to work with, and I have found them extremely sensitive and attentive to exhibitors’ needs. After all, if we make it a good show, the crowds will come. If the exhibitors do their job properly, getting attendees is easy. There’s a constant pursuit by AMTS to improve the show.” ~ Greg Knox, Knox Machinery
“It’s easy to move in, easy to move out, and management is very helpful when you need it… And we have a larger booth as far as displays go, so we have a lot of stuff to move in and out… and it’s still been really easy.” ~ Jerry Kronenberger, Dayton Supply & Tool
“AMTS management is easy to deal with. A lot of things are done online nowadays, so you can go back and see what you’ve done what you haven’t done, you’re sent email reminders… it’s all very simple to use.” ~ Ed Blake, Bohler Uddeholm