Published on July 24th, 2015 | by Janine Giorgenti0
Tips For What to Wear At Trade Shows
You never get a second chance to make a first impression. Make it count.
By Janine Giorgenti
Trade shows are big business. Whether regional or global, companies spend thousands or millions on displays, literature, props, trave
branding, marketing and more. Have you given as much attention to the way you – or your employees – are dressed?
Human visual communication is a company’s biggest marketing tool. What type of company are you representing and what image do you want to portray?
For many industries, it is imperative that a company representative – at a trade show – correspond with the image that the company is looking to represent and uphold. Be it finance, law, fashion, technology, banking, manufacturing, professional services, etc – each company (and industry) has a unique brand identity and needs the right image – at trade shows – that properly represents that image and will be received well by their particular industry.
There are many ways to dress to represent your company and brand. The following is the protocol for business and professional services.
1. Look like the Industry that you are representing.
If you are representing a professional services company, dress like an executive. Do not wear a golf shirt or dress casually. Make sure your clothes fit you well.
Professional Trade Show Attire for Women:
• Skirt suits and blouses.
• Jacket, blouse, and dress slacks.
• Shoes with medium heels.
• Professional-looking accessories.
Professional Trade Show Attire for Men:
• Suit, shirt, and tie.
• Sport coats, dress shirt and dress slacks.
• Leather shoes.
• Matching belt and shoes.
• Simple professional accessories.
• Socks that match the shoes, or are a shade darker than the dress slacks.
2. Grooming Tips.
• Professional hairstyle or haircut.
• Clean-shaven (or neat facial hair for men).
• Neatly pressed, clean clothing.
• Hands must be well manicured.
• Keep perfume and cologne to a minimum.
• Take a small sewing kit with a needle, thread, and a lint brush for quick cleanups or repairs.
• Polish your shoes!
• Cover body art or piercings in order to avoid standing out as “inappropriate.”
• Try on your clothing ahead of time to see if they still fit properly, are clean, and are not in need of repair.
3. Make sure your shoes are comfortable.
This does not mean wearing sneakers or informal shoes. During trade shows, you’ll be on your feet, smiling and interacting with attendees for hours on end. If your shoes are uncomfortable, your feet won’t make it. Purchase shoes that are comfortable and appropriate, so that you can concentrate on networking with industry professionals instead of worrying about your aching feet.
4. Men, do not wear golf clothing.
Just because it looks great on the golf course, does not make it appropriate at a trade show. Unless you’re working for a golf apparel or equipment company, or, happen to be Arnold Palmer – you want to leave the golf attire for your next tee time. I can’t stress this point enough. Fortune 500 executives do not wear golf shirts and slacks to negotiate multi-million dollar deals.
Now have a great show by putting your best foot forward and impressing your attendees.