LANCASTER COUNTY, Pa. -- If you've never been to a trade exhibition before, you might not know how to walk a trade show or make the most of the opportunities it offers.

After a successful October 2017 event, Wood Pro Expo returns to Lancaster County, October 18-19, 2018 at a larger, more popular trade show venue, Warehouse at the Nook.

Wood Pro Expo is a regional event for woodworking businesses that brings together suppliers and experts for a localized presentation of equipment and supply solutions. WPE includes an educational program on best practices for shop production, including CNC basics, employee recruitment, finishing, lean manufacturing, business management, software, and shop safety, and an expo floor with equipment and supplies geared to small and medium-size shops.

To make sure your trade show experience is successful for your company, here are trade show tips for attendees from venue operator Spooky Nook Sports.

The number of booths and other companies attending a trade show might be intimidating and leave you not knowing where to start when you walk in, so make sure you're prepared with some knowledge of the other companies ahead of time.

Check the Wood Pro Expo exhibitors list.  Then, research the companies and make a list of which ones you're interested in talking to. Doing a little research will help you streamline your experience and connect with the companies you're most interested in.

If you want to maximize your connections or make more conversation with these companies, booking a stay at the hotel hosting the trade show will help you get more involved with your contacts.

According to Spooky Nook Sports, you should plan ahead to map out the route you want to take at the trade show. Find a map detailing the locations vendors will be set up, find the companies you're most interested in and make sure to visit them first.

If you have extra time after you talk to your priority vendors, you can visit others you have a secondary interest in or wander a little and see what else you find. But until then, knowing where your target companies are ahead of time will help you get the most out of your attendance. If a booth is exceptionally busy, visit the next on your list and circle back when the crowd clears out a little.

You want to remember the details of the companies you speak to, so bring a notebook and respectfully write down a couple of sentences to remember the key points of your discussion and your level of interest in each company.

Click HERE for more information on getting the most from trade shows at Spooky Nook.

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