Update – the booth babe discussion

Since the original post, Zenobia and myself received many responses. The twitter feeds have been extremely busy. I want to provide a short update here and will follow up with an updated summary a bit later in the week. 

In the Facebook group that we started, “Starting a new dialogue”, Winn Schwartau stated a challenge to exhibitors, he said: “HOW ABOUT A CHALLENGE? … Some really smart person can/should/etc. write up a simple short online “Declaration of Booth Professionalism” and get vendors to sign up. … 

1. No booth babes.
2. Tell us what you do in 30 secs or less (signage, etc.)
3. Have informed people in the booth

That’s all I’m looking for. “

Debbie Rosen of Sonatype stepped up and responded with this declaration: 

 I, the undersigned vendor, agree to uphold the standards of professionalism as a conference participant at all future events. Specifically, I agree to abide by the following 4 common-sense laws of “usefulness” to provide information that is valuable to all conference attendees. These include:
1) The use of meaningful words (i.e. not jargon or sales-y) on my booth that provide a summary of what we do so the passer-by can choose to stop or not stop; 
2) The engagement of booth personnel that are effectively skilled to deliver the answer to “what do we do?” in one minute or less; 
3) The utilization of easily digestible demos and/or collateral that help the visitor delve to the next level of information, should they be interested. (note: whitepapers are great but not digestible); 
4) The banning of booth babes or other gimmicks that scream “I don’t know how to market so I will do it the lazy way.”

I like the language, very simple, to the point. 

What do you think? Is this realistic, for exhibitors at trade shows? 



About Chenxi Wang

Dr. Chenxi Wang is a Principal Analyst with Forrester Research. She serves on the security and risk team, covering topics such as cloud security, application security, and content security. Previously Chenxi was Chief Scientist with KSR Inc. (now part of Neohapsis). Prior to that Chenxi was an Associate Professor at Carnegie Mellon University.
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1 Response to Update – the booth babe discussion

  1. Very realistic – and I think what we as marketers should deliver and expect.

    After reading your first booth babes post – I came across this code of conduct for the TriAgile conference: http://triagile.org/triagile-conference-code-of-conduct/. In summary it states: “Our conference is dedicated to providing a harassment-free conference experience for everyone, regardless of gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, or religion. We do not tolerate harassment of conference participants in any form. Sexual language and imagery is not appropriate for any conference venue, including talks, workshops, parties, Twitter and other online media. Conference participants violating these rules may be sanctioned or expelled from the conference without a refund at the discretion of the conference organizers.”

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