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Old January 28th, 2008, 12:56 PM   #1
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Bridal Show Event Booth

We are attending a local bridal show next week and have rented a 5X10 booth,
This being our first show I am wondering what you all do if you have attended an event like this.
So far I have made a banner 5'X1' & Poster 2'X3'"for the booth both in color, made a display board with our company info and pricing packeges, a couple of dried flower arrangemants to spruce up the booth. I was going to set up a cheaper velbon tripod with a sonytvr33 & 3watt lamp and then put my Gear up beside it ( XH-A1 with AT 896 shootgun mike & canon 10 Watt light on a manfroto 955 tripod with a 501 head) And put up a caption like sure you could have your uncle Ted video tape your wedding, or you could do the smart thing and hire a professional
with high quality equipment and have it done right. WE also have some demo
disks we will be running on a laptop as well I will be doing some live feed from the A1 to the laptop during the show, I have had a thousand business cards
made up and we are offering a 20% discount coupon off all packages if booked before March 31.. I think that about covers what we have so far.

Any other comments or suggestions will be deffinately welcomed

Robin
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Old January 28th, 2008, 01:09 PM   #2
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"And put up a caption like sure you could have your uncle Ted video tape your wedding, or you could do the smart thing and hire a professional
with high quality equipment and have it done right. "

I'm not down with a caption like that.. that seems to be more confrontational than it needs to be. Instead of a caption that insinuates something on the customer side, use a caption that pumps up the product you offer.
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Old January 28th, 2008, 01:28 PM   #3
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maybe have a drunk with a consumer camera with the name tag "Ted" on it at the booth, you can ask which they prefer?
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Old January 28th, 2008, 02:10 PM   #4
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Robin, IMHO brides won't get your point - and they may well even be put off by your macho gear on the stand. They don't want the intrusion (even if they do want the good results).

I would ditch all the camera equipment, just get a big plasma screen (NOT a laptop!) showing your results.
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Old January 28th, 2008, 03:26 PM   #5
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OK Thanks for the input Guys
Maybe a rethink of Uncle Ted is in order.
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Old January 28th, 2008, 03:47 PM   #6
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I will sometimes contrast hiring a pro vs a relative, but I approach it from the viewpoint of not having to burden a relative with working on a day that they should be enjoying.

I stopped bringing gear into the shows a few years back and no one cared ( at one point I was even setting up my cam-crane!)

One mistake I see alot is people setting up a tv on a table in the front of the booth. I move the table to the back of the booth so that makes room for brides to come into the booth and get out of the flow of traffic.

I have been doing shows for 8 years, but I still don't have a really good pitch yet. One thing I do know is that they don't really care what the resolution of your camera is. I find it is more productive to just talk with them about their wedding and let them get to know you. Unfortunately, I still find myself falling into the "my videos are great because...blah blah blah" routine.

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Old January 28th, 2008, 04:04 PM   #7
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Hey Robin, I have a picture of our last booth on my website, front page. www.droptodesign.com Please forgive the drab tarp to the left, that was my neighbor's doing. I've seen other videogaphers bring their gear, and the only thing I get out of it, is seeing what my competition uses.

As for what I have found works at a show? Presentation is everything, this includes your dress, your approach with brides/grooms/mother's, your video demo will be very important. Your price list will be important, if you want to give it out.

Weddings are very personal, and it is the approach we take at the show and the wedding. We listen, ask, and listen more about what our clients want. I hope this helps.

I swear shows are more work than the wedding itself, but that's just me.
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Old January 28th, 2008, 05:03 PM   #8
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Also, you don't want to compare yourself to an "uncle Ted". It makes your work look bad if it's even slightly comparable to uncle Ted's video.
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Old January 28th, 2008, 06:55 PM   #9
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forget the gear. For the most part brides don't know nor care about the gear. Show the demo and TALK to everyone. Have a handout to give them, put your prices on it because that's one thing they want to see. Talk to every bride you can have a 2nd person there to help out, smile, smile smile and did I mention to talk to everyone you can. Let them talk to you. Ask about the wedding, be friendly as possible get them into your booth, handout the stuff, and don't expect to book anyone at the show. Be sure to follow up. The shows that I did over the years I always got a list from the show producer of all the regisitered brides and sent out a followup card and email blast. I hired someone to do that for me and it was well worth it.
I haven't done a show in about 3 years, no, make it 4 but I think it will work today and tomorrow like it did a years ago.
Good Luck, have fun
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Old January 28th, 2008, 09:27 PM   #10
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Just did a show this last weekend. What did they pay attention to? The 42inch TV elevated to bout 6 feet. If they were standing in line for other vendors, they'd watch it. Sitting across the room waiting for the dress show to start they'd watch it. Walking up to the booth, they'd watch it.

That and it's great to use the sales pitch with the demo. Saying how we can capture your bridal party having fun at the reception, and then having the demo playing right behind you showing everyone doing the YMCA(or some silly dance).

There is a small catch, the bride's aren't usually watching the TV and thinking "wow what a great demo, this guy is the best". They're thinking "huh, so that's how she did her flowers. I think I'll do mine that way". It will still be your job to sell yourself and your service.

On the subject of whether to bring your gear or not, I don't see how it hurts. Everyone does make a good point, the bride's don't care how fancy your lens may be. The gear (if it stands out, say like an XL2) does make it easy to identify your booth as a videographer though.

Almost forgot. Don't get stuck behind your booth!!! I had a young lady in front of the booth with me behind. It's like doubling the amount of space you can use. Worked out great.
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Old January 28th, 2008, 10:20 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Hall View Post
We are attending a local bridal show next week and have rented a 5X10 booth,
This being our first show I am wondering what you all do if you have attended an event like this.
So far I have made a banner 5'X1' & Poster 2'X3'"for the booth both in color, made a display board with our company info and pricing packeges, a couple of dried flower arrangemants to spruce up the booth. I was going to set up a cheaper velbon tripod with a sonytvr33 & 3watt lamp and then put my Gear up beside it ( XH-A1 with AT 896 shootgun mike & canon 10 Watt light on a manfroto 955 tripod with a 501 head) And put up a caption like sure you could have your uncle Ted video tape your wedding, or you could do the smart thing and hire a professional
with high quality equipment and have it done right. WE also have some demo
disks we will be running on a laptop as well I will be doing some live feed from the A1 to the laptop during the show, I have had a thousand business cards
made up and we are offering a 20% discount coupon off all packages if booked before March 31.. I think that about covers what we have so far.

Any other comments or suggestions will be deffinately welcomed

Robin
Posters, brochures, business cards, and at least two large monitors running demo loops of very good footage of the things bride like to see. Have audio with the demos, but don't count on it being heard. Too much other noise at these shows.

If you are going to show off your camera gear, show only the best of what your have. A cheap tripod is clearly a cheap tripod. No one is going to be fooled. Display the gear prominently, but keep it in the background. Brides don't know, understand, or care what kind of cool gear you have.

Have lots of things for brides to look at so you can keep them in your booth.

Have a brutal knock down, drag out, devil's advocate session regarding the content of your sales pitch.

Make the booth look attractive and inviting.

Add an additional discount for signing a contract at the show.

Have two or three assistants. You will need them if you get in extended conversation with a potential client. Train them well on what to say.

Have fun, and trade business cards with as many other vendors as you can.
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Old January 29th, 2008, 08:58 AM   #12
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Thanks For all the great Advice everyone, I am sure it will come in handy.
My wife who is creative brains behind the outfit will be manning the booth with me. Basically our arrangement is I shoot and maintain & build our workstations ( tech support) ,she edits and produces final product. If we get overloaded then I jump in and help on the editing side, but I like working behind the camera far better then being infront of the computer , as I already spend far to many Hours infront of the monitor at my regular day job.
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Old January 30th, 2008, 12:44 AM   #13
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My two cents:

Your pitch is HUGE. If you don't have bullets, or are just really bad at it, join or check out Toastmasters. It's a networking group solely devoted to becoming better speakers. You need this skill, and the networking doesn't hurt.

At the end of the show, don't break down right away. Let your video play for the other vendors, and help other people break down -- especially photographers. Selling video is greatly enhanced by recommendations.

My 'Uncle Ted' spin is positive: "Set Your Uncle Free". Brides either laugh or read on when they see it because it gives debate to the faulty notion that their uncle will do okay.

No gear.

No cranes! ;o)

No talking to people in front of other vendor's booths. (I can't believe how much this happens)

No talking down the competition. Videographers need each other, and because I think every bride should do video I want every videographer to be fully booked.
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Old February 4th, 2008, 09:08 AM   #14
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Just wanted to post a THANK YOU to all for your Suggestions.
The Show Went very well, I was initially not very happy with the look of the booth on Friday's setup night, so we made a trip to the 24 hr Wallmart and bought some drapery sashes and material to spruce up the tables at the booth, the end result was a huge improvement. I also purchased a 20" samsung LCD HDTV to use at the booth and with my LG upconverting DVD player, even the resulting SD Videos Looked very nice, I would have liked something a little Larger but budjet constraints prevented that also the
20" is small enough for me to move by myself quite easily. I did Setup the
A1 On the tripod in the back corner of the booth & did a live feed to our laptop as well, this actually did work fairly well at stopping some or at least slowing them down in front of the booth so we could Catch thier attention,& and when we did have a couple of questions about our
equipment and we did I was able to point it out which seemed to ease some concerns that we would not be using a handycam. But I don't think I will take it to the next show. All In all WE did manage to talk to about 350 brides
on a good one to one basis, so only time will tell if it was worth the effort or not, but our initial feeling is that at least there are a lot more people out there in our local area that Know about us now, so it was probably worth the effort & expense to do. At least the next one should be a little Easier on the pocketbook, :)

WE did manage to get a couple of 8mm conversion & VHS transfer jobs , that was a bit of a bonus & made a couple of good Photographer Contacts
that we didn't have before another plus.

Last edited by Robin Hall; February 5th, 2008 at 08:32 AM.
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