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Networking when you have a product not a service can be tricky. The accountants and business coaches and other service-based business people can stand up and tell people what they do, and why they’re different from other accountants and so on. And they’ll explain why you need them rather than those other accountants.

And that’s fine. That works well for them.

But if the focus for your business is a product or products, then it can be harder.

For some, bringing a tester along is easier than others – looking at you, Salcombe Gin, and Cornish Maid Flowers – where your product can be brought to the table.

But if you sell chairs, for example, or something else bulky, then is networking even worth it for you?
Well, Your Partnerships would like to think so!

New opportunity
And to make it easier for you to showcase your products, we’re offering a new opportunity for businesses which sell products to show off their wares at our events.
Our Tabletop Showcase is available for you, at large scale events, such as Big Lunches and Connector events, for just £50. You will be able to have a table (or floorspace if a table isn’t appropriate) and space for roll-up banners, for just £50 plus VAT, per event.

You can bring your items, and place your stand in an area with good footfall among those attending the event, and will have opportunity to ‘show and tell’ rather than just talking about what you do.

Success story
You may have noticed that we have been trialling this opportunity already, with Paul Skinner of Backworld being the Guinea Pig.
Paul was invited to bring his ergonomic chairs to a Big Lunch event at Boringdon Golf Club recently, as well as an event in Exeter, which he might not otherwise have attended. He found that, once people started milling around, there was some interest in his chairs, and he took enquiries from several potential customers. He says it’s definitely worth it to him to pay a little extra to bring the chairs, as no amount of talking will replace the feeling you get when you sit in a really good chair!

This image shows Paul's Backworld Showcase, at the Big Lunch at Boringdon Golf Club recently, before the meal was served.
 

Who could this really benefit?
This might be perfect for you if your business is in packaging, or plants, or furniture. If you’re a maker, a creative person, a jeweller, or costumer. Maybe you make customisable items for businesses, or put logos or slogans on uniforms.  What about protective gear, or signage for businesses? Maybe you’re a publisher, of books, magazines, cards, or artwork.

If businesses could be interested in what you produce, then get in touch, and we can work out how to showcase it.

Logistics
This is still a new programme – we’re ironing out the creases at the moment. We’re happy to work with you to figure out the best positioning for your stand, and how to optimise your visual appeal. We’ll announce prior to the event who the Tabletop Showcase businesses will be, so you can chat about it on your socials, and make sure that your details are included in our post-event publicity as well.
 
Here are a couple of happy networkers, trying out the seating alternatives that Paul brought with him.

The table or space will be around 1.5-2 metres, and you’ll have space for banners too – let us know whether you’ll need a table, and we can arrange that. We will make sure that you have access to at least a loading bay for your items, or a close parking space, and someone to help you unload if necessary.

We may have to curate which businesses are using the Tabletop Showcase opportunity at specific events, to ensure the best visibility for your products – we don’t want an entire suite of similar items, if we can avoid that.

Please get in touch with your local YP representative to discuss how we can make this work best for your business.