IBC show: The language of trade shows…translated

By in M&E
On September 1, 2017


Before the annual pilgrimage to Amsterdam for the IBC Show, Rob Ettridge takes a tongue-in-cheek look at the language of trade shows. Here’s his top 20 guide to what people say at shows and what they really mean.

  1. Are you having a good show? = I’ve got nothing interesting to say to you.
  2. Wow, great booth = I still have nothing to say to you.
  3. When did you get in? = I’m running out of things to say– please keep talking to fill the awkward silences.
  4. When are you leaving? = Please don’t be on the same flight as me.
  5. Your booth is really spacious = You have no customers.
  6. I’ve got show fatigue = I drank too much last night, can’t remember what the hell happened and now feel like crap.
  7. I’ve got back-to-back meetings all day so it’ll be difficult to catch up = I’m heading down to the Beach right now and will be mainly drinking all day.
  8. Great to catch up. = Damn, you caught me. I’ve been trying to avoid you all week.
  9. Great to see you. = I haven’t a clue who you are but would really like a water and some of that free stuff to take home to my kids.
  10. Can I see a demo? = I really need a sit down and have a coffee.
  11. I’m keeping my dinner plans fluid. = I don’t want to see you outside the show.
  12. I’m consulting at the moment = Help me please, I really need a job!
  13. See our ‘solutions for tomorrow’s world’ = We have no show news of interest at all.
  14. It’s a true paradigm shift = We have no clue where we’re heading with this but it sounds really important.
  15. Obviously it needs further testing. = This stuff doesn’t work now and probably won’t by the next show​.
  16. We’re showcasing new and improved solutions = We’re showing the same old shit as we did at the last show.
  17. We’re partnering with best-in-class vendors = Our stuff doesn’t work on its own.
  18. We listen to our customers’ concerns and take their feedback very seriously. = Please don’t complain; it won’t make any difference.
  19. We’re really looking forward to realising the synergies this merger will bring. = We’re about to fire a load of you.
  20. Can you scan my badge = Wow, you’re hot – I’ve been wanting to speak to you all week.

Are you going to the IBC Show? If you want to book an appointment at the show contact hello@rlyl.com 


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