It is amazing what you can learn in the strangest of places.
On the road from Colombo to Yala I learnt a valuable sales tip that is applicable to any sales situation but particularly to exhibitors. All across Sri Lanka there are huts on the side of the road where the locals sell their produce. Here is one we stopped at that had a lot of different beans, peas, grains and chillies.
Some of the more humble huts are staffed by children. (Hut is a bit generous. It is more a simple table!) As you got closer they were smiling, holding high what they had to sell and inviting you to stop and look at their produce. Originally I just dismissed them as kids selling vegetables but then I noticed something. After we went past, they were still smiling and simply tried to engage the next passer by. It got me thinking and comparing this young boy to many of the exhibitors I have seen and worked with.
Here is what that 10 year old Sri Lankan taught me:
- Smile! It helps to engage with the passers by.
- Make sure the prospect knows exactly what you are offering – even if this means waving around your product.
- Use some kind of pick up line to engage the passer by.
- If they don’t stop, don’t take it personally. Keep smiling and look for the next person.
Such simple things that so many in sales, and particularly those exhibiting at Trade Shows or Expos, forget to do.