How To Get Me To Visit Your Booth at SHRM11

Like everyone who will be attending SHRM’s national conference in Las Vegas at the end of June, I’ve been getting some postcards!  Ok, I’ve been getting an obscene amount of postcards, all vying for a few minutes of my attention when I hit the expo floor at the conference.  I think it’s funny how they come in all different shapes, sizes and colors – all giving me the hope that I might win an iPad, or some other gotta-have item (BTW – @WilliamTincup – – might have had the best advice ever for HR vendors working the expo at SHRM – giveaway ladies shoes!) if I just stop by and visit.

Here’s the problem with your postcards – I throw them away – yes, even the ones that say I need to bring it with me to participate in your giveaway, or bring the card for a “special gift” – unless that “special gift” is an iPad or cash or shoes (I’m not a lady, but I am metro and like shoes!).  So, how do you get me to stop by and see your booth?  Here are some suggestions:

Margaritas – I like margaritas, and if you’re serving them up, you have me for one (or two) – I’m all yours.   StarrTincup served beer at The HR Tech Conference last year in Chicago, and their booth was packed the entire time the beer was flowing.  FYI – this works better in the afternoon!

Star Power – Sorry to tell you this, but your CEO isn’t a star – so I don’t care if they are at your booth.  While I’m sure they are very important and have much power back at headquarters – they’re just another salesman on the floor at an Expo.  But I will be stopping by’s booth on Monday June 27th at 3pm. Why? Because they are brining in some HR Star Power with Steve Boese, China Gorman and Laurie Ruettimann – 3 HR folks who I admire and that all get it – and they are serving wine (which I don’t care for – but some might – see “Margaritas” above). The moral of this story – star power and alcohol do mix.

Caffeine – This works really well in the morning – bring in some great coffee drinks and you’ll attract a crowd to your booth – BUT not me!  Bring in Diet Mt. Dew – and not only will I show up at your booth – but I’ll talk about you all morning on Twitter and pimp your booth real hard!  Chocolate also works well here – woman and chocolate tend to play well at SHRM.

Call Me – I’m not sure exactly what people spend on postcards, but I’m guessing $1-$2 per piece.  If you took 30 seconds to call me and ask me to stop by – there is a 86% chance I would.  So, go find a high school student who just got done with classes, give them a 30 second script and a call list of HR folks coming to SHRM – and start calling – you’ll save about thousands of dollars and get better results.

I had exactly 1 company reach out to me personally and ask me to visit them at their booth to see their new stuff – I can’t wait to visit with the folks from Halogen!  Oh, and if anyone talks to @EWMonster, Eric Winegardner – tell him I threw away my CareerBuilder poker chip postcard yesterday, but I’m still waiting on my invitation to a Monster party!


3 thoughts on “How To Get Me To Visit Your Booth at SHRM11

  1. Nice rundown Tim. Perhaps even combining the chocolate, alcohol, and Diet Mt. Dew in a gigantic ‘bad for you’ display would be the killer booth. Look forward to seeing you in Vegas.

  2. I’ve gotten exactly zero postcards, but I’ve been inundated with e-mails, and have received at least 5 phone calls, asking to meet with a CEO or some representative of their org.

    I’m their worst audience…an academic who has zero buying power for my organization. Since I won’t buy, I will never have my name drawn as a winner for any booth prize.

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