Hotel Trade Shows: Developing Speaking Opportunities

By Gini Dietrich Founder & CEO, Arment Dietrich Inc. | October 28, 2008

How many hotel trade shows do you attend each year? I'm willing to bet you attend the big ones - NYU Investment Outlook, ALIS, and the Lodging Conference. Some of you probably even attend NABHOOD and the specific brand shows. So how do you get visibility for yourself and your company among the thousands of people who attend each year?

Work with trade show organizers to create a speaking opportunity for yourself of someone senior in your business! Trade show organizers want really good, dynamic speakers. And if you can prove you have a charismatic speaker and an interesting topic, you're certain to be listed on the agenda with their full promotion behind you.

Think about speaking engagements as rare opportunities to accomplish marketing goals...in one fail swoop. You can network and build relationships, enhance your reputation as an expert, and increase your visibility.

1. Learn the process for submitting a speaker proposal.

First identify the trade show coordinators and then follow their carefully established format for writing a topic outline. The format may vary from trade show to trade show so one size may not fit all. Submit a summary, bios, and a synopsis of your expertise. You should also include any previous speaking experience. And always, always, always meet the deadline. Often the call for speakers for next year starts during the current year's show or immediately following with Web site posting of dates, application forms, and possible topics - don't wait to inquire.

2. Be persistent in your follow-up with the trade show coordinators.

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