Take Advantage of Five Key Ways to Get Involved at The NATSO Show

HighwayBusinessMatters.jpgThe NATSO Show is all new and industry suppliers are playing a crucial role in its success. NATSO is urging vendors to add to attendees’ enthusiasm by presenting new and innovative products and ideas. “We have reinvented The NATSO Show, and industry vendors now have even more opportunities to engage with truckstop owners and operators,” said Pamela Hayes, NATSO’s vice president of strategic partnerships. Highway Business Matters has outlined five ways suppliers can spread their message and connect with attendees.

Network on the show floor. For years some of the best networking has been on the show floor, and this year NATSO is stepping it up a notch by holding its educational sessions, featured speakers and welcome reception right in the heart of the action. “Veracruz Exhibit Hall is going to be the place to be and our intent is for suppliers to move around and join in all of the activities too,” Hayes said. “By holding events on the show floor we will be increasing foot traffic at the booths and making it easy for suppliers to take advantage of the networking and educational events we have planned.” The show floor will be open on Saturday, February 19, 2011 from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. with the unopposed exhibit hours running from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and on Sunday, February 20,1011 from 8:00 a.m. to 1:45 p.m. with the unopposed exhibit hours running from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Launch a new product. Capture headlines and wow attendees by unveiling a new product at The NATSO Show. For those suppliers launching a new product, NATSO is offering the marketing and promotional services of LaunchIt Public Relations for free. “This is suppliers’ opportunity to gain exposure and NATSO is supporting their efforts by providing a professional firm to present information on true product launches,” Hayes said. “We are hoping suppliers will bring their newest and most innovative products and ideas.” See the following story for more information on this innovative offering.

Share industry data. Vendors can do more than supply products. They can supply knowledge and expertise that can take a truckstop or travel plaza to the next level. By sharing regional sales data, driver insights or trend analysis, vendors can strengthen relationships and give operators the information they crave. Time and time again truckstop owners have told NATSO they want to learn from suppliers. Bobby Berkstresser, owner of Lee Hi Travel Plaza and Whites Travel Center and NATSO’s 2011 chairman, said, “There is so much free information that could be available to help independent operators be stronger. What should inventory turns be? What should labor be?” Vendors can hold talks in their booths, distribute information sheets or share expertise one-on-one.

Show off products. Vendors don’t have to just show products, they can show them off with in-booth product demonstrations. With scheduled demos, attendees will know when they can see products in action and learn about their features.

Create a customized approach. NATSO knows suppliers’ products and services are unique. So are their marketing goals, so NATSO will work with vendors to ensure their convention presence advances their specific goals. To start inventing a targeted package, vendors can contact Pamela Hayes at phayes@natso.com or (703) 739-8565, or Susan Taylor at staylor@natso.com or (703) 739-7572.

{HBMHighway Business Matters is a brief semi-monthly newsletter created exclusively for companies that provide products or services to the truckstop and travel plaza industry. Highway Business Matters will keep you informed on trends, tactics, and tips to help you connect to the $65 billion truckstop and travel plaza industry. 

Help tailor Highway Business Matters to meet your needs by sharing your feedback and story ideas. Send your input to: atoner@natso.com.


Mindy Long's photo

Mindy Long

Before launching a full-time freelance career, Long edited NATSO's Stop Watch magazine. Prior to that Long worked as a staff reporter for Transport Topics, a weekly trade newspaper, covering freight transportation, fuel and environmental issues. In addition to covering the transportation sector, Long has written, reported and edited for a variety of media outlets. She was the Washington correspondent for WCAX-TV (CBS) in Burlington, Vt., a criminal court reporter in Chicago and a freelance copy editor for Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine in Washington D.C. Long hold a master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism in Evanston, Ill., and a bachelor’s degree in Communications from Westminster College in Salt Lake City.More
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