Trade Show

After the Show To-Do’s and FAQs

The ATA Trade Show helps start your year on the right foot, but taking the next step is up to you.
Photo Credit: ATA

Author: Cassie Scott

#ATA2019 is in the books! What’s next for your business? If you act on the following items, you could be on your way to a prosperous 2019.

Look over your orders or follow up with anyone you spoke to at the Show. Photo Credit: ATA

To Do

Make a Follow up Plan

Follow up with Show contacts and capitalize on potential profit. Review all the information you collected at the Show, and create a plan to connect with leads. Your plan should include goals and a timeline. Determine what you want to accomplish and by when. Next, decide who on your team – if it isn’t you – should contact the prospects. Also decide if they should connect by phone or email.

Read these ATA articles for follow-up ideas.

5 Tips for Capitalizing on Business Leads after the ATA Trade Show

The Show’s Over… It’s Time to Follow Up


Review Your Orders for Accuracy

Kurt Smith, ATA’s director of industry relations, said retailers should review all orders placed at the Show to ensure they receive the right number of products on the right dates. Meanwhile, manufacturers should review their orders to ensure they have enough products to ship, and enough staff to fill the orders. This review helps avoid confusion and catch errors before they become fiascos.


Meet with Your Staff

Smith recommends retailers meet with staff to update everyone on new products ordered at the Show. Educational sessions help everyone speak intelligently and confidently about products when customers ask, which boosts sales. It’s also a good time to assign responsibilities and discuss your Show follow-up plan.

Vote in the ATA’s Retail Council and Board of Directors Elections

The ATA Board of Directors provides oversight, strategic direction, and decisions on finances and other major issues to advance the organization’s goals and mission. The Board of Directors consists of 20 members. The 2019 election fills three positions. The ATA conducts the election by mail beginning Feb. 1. All ballots must be faxed or postmarked on or before March 1. Election results will be announced March 7.

The Retail Council guides, supports and represents all ATA-member retailers, no matter their size, location or platform. The Councils is accepting nominations for six of its 15 seats. Candidates must submit their nomination papers by 5 p.m. CST on March 3. Voting for Retail Council seats runs March 4 through March 30. Click here to learn more.


Stay Connected with ATA Connect

ATA Connect is an online discussion community exclusively for ATA members. It helps you network, share ideas, ask questions and get business advice from peers. Only retailers can read and contribute to conversations within the Retail Growth Interact community. All ATA members can participate in the forum on the My ATA Network. Log in here using your ATA-member credentials. Then, set up your profile and contribute by hitting the “Discussions” tab.

Be sure to participate in the hassle-free polls, and download the “MemberCentric” app to access ATA Connect on the go. The app is easy to use, and can be set up to send notifications on discussions in specific threads or communities.


Capitalize on Other ATA-Member Benefits

The ATA is here to help year-round, not just at the Show and the weeks that follow. Learn about the ATA’s many resources and services that help grow your business, including educational programs, free business listings, free shareable online content, ongoing advocacy efforts, a free federal-excise-tax guide, and much more. Capitalize on everything the ATA offers, and check out the ATA’s membership page for more information.

Next year's Show is Jan. 9-11 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Photo credit: ATA

Frequently Asked Questions


Where can I find contact information for Show attendees and exhibitors?

Check the ATA’s floor map, mobile app or membership directory to find leads and contact information.

This list is free to ATA members who sign a confidentiality agreement. ATA staff verify that you’re an authorized, credentialed member. This process ensures privacy for everyone listed.

Click here to complete the agreement, and then submit it to Wendy Lang, ATA’s senior membership manager, at


When is next year’s Show?

The 2020 ATA Trade Show is Jan. 9-11 at the Indiana Convention Center in Indianapolis.


When does attendee registration open for the 2020 Show?

Registration for the 2020 Show opens in June. Visit the Trade Show registration webpage for more information.


I’m an exhibitor. When can I select my booth for the 2020 Show?

Booth selections for the 2020 Show start in late April. The booth-selection order is based on preference points. Click here to learn more about the preference-point system. 2019 Show exhibitors will receive a booth-selection packet by mail with a date and time to choose their site. Companies new to the Show select a booth after all companies with preference points make their selections.

If you have questions, please contact the ATA Trade Show, business and membership office toll-free at (866) 266-2776.

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