Advice for Attending Chinese Trade Fairs
Trade shows, fairs, and exhibitions in China have exploded in numbers in the recent years. However, the only trade fair you probably can name is the world-famous Canton Fair, but that’s barely scratching the surface of opportunity of trade shows in China. This blog will give you all the information you need to know about attending Chinese trade fairs.
There are several factors behind choosing which trade fair to attend, but the most important is finding the right show for your purposes. Therefore, identifying reasonable goals you wish to obtain is vital, while keeping in mind to be realistic. Be aware that trade fairs are often just initial meetings, with purchases and business deals to come afterwards. The internet has so many resources for trade fairs that doing research prior to arriving is made easy. To find trade fairs you can search industry associations, different trade publications, or even a website specializing in trade fairs, like ChinaExhibition.com where the information is easily broken down for your convenience. After something catches your eye, you can visit the website of the exhibition, see the vendors that will set up shop there, and then make a game plan of which companies you’d like to engage with.
Before you arrive, make a list (written or mental) of questions and have professional business cards for exchange. If it’s your first trade fair then take it as a learning experience, take your time and be patient, talk to people, network, and if things go well you can follow up with your leads and perhaps make a factory visit or facilitate a business meeting.
While at the fair, don’t be a wallflower! Because of the common purpose of coming together for the show, it shouldn’t be awkward to begin conversations. With that said, you also don’t have to think you’ll talk with everyone, not every booth or person is going to interest you. Some large trade fairs will be crowded but it’s best to be patient and to not rush through the crowd otherwise you’ll lose the intended purpose.
Chinese trade shows come in all shapes and sizes, and in some more specialized fairs instances a translator might be a good idea because of the language difference. Most the time you can hire students waiting outside for a reasonable price but it’s best to already have a translator that you’re comfortable communicating through.
There are many guides to ease the tension of going to a Chinese trade fair, and we hope this information was a helpful addition. CPG has a Canton Fair specific checklist which will help to gather the materials needed before you go, while you’re there, and afterwards. These tips from experts are great for newbies to the trade fair world!