5 Tips when attending Agricultural Trade Shows or Outdoor Events
Which Show to Choose
Of paramount importance is to select the right event your product. Agricultural shows are perfect for the obvious products like farming equipment such as John Deer tractors, harvester’s, water tanks 4wd cars and soil additives. But these events effectively become a mini town for a few days and need hundreds of other unrelated products to make the event successful. Food stalls selling anything from German sausages, hamburgers, roast beef rolls and coffee and cake are sought after by visitors. The opportunity to make a lot of money from selling food is huge. But it’s important to get it right. The food has to be fresh and presentation must be perfect. Competition for food at these events is big, so although taste is important, you won’t get any customers unless you can tick the presentation and cleanliness boxes. You will also have local government inspectors coming to all events to make sure you comply with all health regulations. If you’re not into food, you can make money from selling hats, tools (new and used), clothing, wood work, jewelry and even solar panels. To get some ideas it is best to go and visit a few of these shows. Walk around and see who is buying what and do some google research on where to buy. Make sure that you calculate all costs including site fees and accommodation.
Outdoor events generally run for two or three days with some going for up to a week. Most events like AgQuip in Gunnedah will have many large marquees and pavilions already set up. Although you’ll pay a lot more for these sites the advantage of just turning up and setting up your display makes life easy. Generally these sites are perfect for food vendors and those that don’t need a big space. At the end of the day you can just walk out and leave everything set up for the next day’s trade. If you want to stand out at the show or need a bigger site to display your products then you’re going to need to bring your own shade. Small folding marquees are ideal for trade shows and come in a large range of sizes. It’s probably worthwhile going the extra yards and getting your marquee custom printed. Although more expensive you’ll look far more professional and customers will have more confidence in your products.
Ag shows can be a lot of fun however they can get tiring if you don’t have the right equipment, food and clothing. Firstly, you not going to want to stand all day so bring a comfortable chair with a cushion. You can buy a cheap folding chair at any Bunnings around the country. Although you will probably want to sample the large range of yummy food from the mobile vendors, it’s probably worthwhile bringing a bit of convenience food with you. A thermal flask is ideal for making yourself a cup of coffee, especially if you are busy and don’t get a chance to get away from your site. Clothing should be neat, tidy but importantly comfortable. Make sure that you pack in a jumper or jacket as most country areas will get cold at night. Also don’t forget to bring wet weather gear. Setting up and dismantling your site is not a lot of fun when you’re drenched!
Parking at events can be difficult and you may have to walk some distance from the carpark. Most events will allow you to drive to your site to set up however cars must be out of the exhibition area normally about 30 minutes before the gates open. The first day is normally the worst as everyone is trying to set up at the same time. If you have a large site it’s definitely worthwhile setting up the night before. Security is generally on site so you won’t need to be too concerned with leaving your display products. It is still recommended to take small expensive items back to your hotel or apartment. If your site is big enough, you can also consider to leave your car onsite with you. This avoids the rush to get your car out however you will have to wait back a little later until app visitors have left the grounds.
Accommodation can be difficult to get if you wait until too close to the event, especially if you want to find something close. Booking.com or other hotel search engines are ideal to find somewhere to stay at the right budget. Depends on the size of the exhibition but you may have to stay at least 20-30 minutes’ drive away. Also be prepared to pay a premium as normally there are no discounts on fair day!