top of page
Articles Library

Are You Preparing for the Super Bowl or a Pick-up Game?

Jim Cermak

Episode 14 – Are preparing for the Super Bowl or a Pick-up Game?

The Super Bowl is this Sunday and it got me thinking about trade shows. Shocker, right? I have a question for you – are you preparing for your next show like it’s the Super Bowl or likes it’s a neighborhood pick-up game? There’s a difference!

There’s a reason it’s called The Big Game. It is the BIGGEST game of the year! Win or go home. Do or die. Here are some things I thought of that compare your next show to the Big Game:

— How are you preparing? Do you have the training regimen like a world-class athlete putting in the reps, being at the gym or practice field for hours a day? Or the preparation of a championship coach? Pouring through hours and hours of game film, reading over scouting reports, and late-night meetings with the coaching staff. Or are you treating your next game like a neighborhood pick-up game – maybe tossing a football around in the backyard with a buddy?

— Do you have a well-thought-out game plan or just going to wing it?

— Is your team prepared? Are you training them well? Are you spending the time and making sure they are well versed on the booth, your business, your goals, and how they are going to be engaging and qualifying attendees? Or are you just going to let them show up? Be sure to check out Episode #3 on Training Here:

— How much do you know about the other team? About all the other exhibitors? About your competition? Listen to Episode 11 about what and how you should research for the show!

— We have come to Halftime in this short episode! Just like the Super Bowl has its amazing commercials – Trade Show University officially has its first sponsor!

This episode is brought to you by Audible! Get a Free Audiobook and a Free 30-day Trial by visiting

We are back for the second half! Let’s go right to the next thing teams do to prepare for the Big Game.

— Do you have the right players on the field? Whether it's for the full game or just one specific play, coaches strategize about who needs to be on the field. You need to do the same thing for your next show! Depending on your goals, you want to make sure you have your top performers there. Need to engage people? Have your sales or marketing people – or your people out in front! Need to do demos? Have your product people, your engineers, developers, or designers there. Whatever your goals, staff up accordingly! For help, check out Episode 2 on Staffing your Booth for success:

— Just like each player has a role on the team, so should your booth staff. Make sure you have a specific role or role for each person in your booth. We talk about this more in Episode 3:

— Is your team conditioned to still be playing with high energy in the 4th quarter? Just like a championship is trained to play at a high level throughout the entire game, make sure you and your staff are doing what it takes to keep your energy high throughout the entire show. For tips, listen to Episode 5 which was my interview with a registered dietitian:

— So you get to the show and depending on how you planned and strategized – like for the Super Bowl or for a pick-up game – you will end that show in one of two ways:

( 1 ) At the end of the show are you jubilant or…

( 2 ) Sitting on the sidelines with your head in your hands?

OR ( 3 ) and possibly worst way – are you walking away like you were just leaving another day at the office? Like no big deal. You have to get invested in this and have a passion to get the results you need!

So plan and prepare for your show like it’s the Super Bowl and not just some little scrimmage game! Then go and execute like a champion!

About the author, Jim Jim Cermak has over 25 years of marketing, consulting, and training experience, and has planned and worked hundreds of Trade Shows. He gets a little overly excited about Trade Shows, and puts that passion into helping companies get better results!


2 views0 comments


Commenting has been turned off.

If you enjoyed this article, receive free email updates!

Thanks for subscribing!

Join 20,000 subscribers who receive our newsletter with
resources, events and articles

Thanks for subscribing!

bottom of page