Sophos Case Study @

The End Result:

  • 660 Written leads generated
  • 1400 Badge Scans
  • 1000 Competition forms filled out (*see below)

Client Objective:
Real Written leads

Brand Awareness

*Competition forms
These were small forms with a survey and lead qualifier questions to fill out by the customer.  Similar to a do it yourself lead form- the customer would fill out their contact details, plus answer questions based on their security needs. Sophos had 1000 of these and ran out on day 4 (of a 5 day show)


The floor plan
Not to Scale

A: Meeting area:
This was for current clients, pre-arranged meetings with potential clients and walk-ins. it was a restful area with food and drinks

B: Internal Area
This was closed off to the public and contained all the drinks in a fridge,and giveaways which were replenished after each day. Staff could also go in here to have a drink/break away from customers eyes.

C: Presentation area
This was a large screen and seating area for the 7 different presentations from 2 different presenters

D: The Infotainer (David Welzman)
This is the area I would build the crowds. Crowds would stand on the outside of the booth

E: Demo Computers
This area was where the sales team could take customers to view a demo


The At Show Strategy

Sophos took a Pro-active approach to exhibiting, as opposed to a Passive standing and waiting for customers to come to them. To sum up their strategy in 1 word would be:


logo_ceirThis strategy  is a smart one- According to the CEIR (Centre for exhibition industry research)- the number 1 thing that attracts customers to a booth is live demonstrations. Live demonstrations  attract more customers than preshow marketing + a large sized stand + Signage combined. Amazingly live demonstrations are rare on the trade show floor.

Pre show marketing: is difficult and expensive when doing it at an international show, with customers literally from all over the world, as you could imagine, direct mail, email campaign’s Magazine advertising gets expensive when you have to do it to 20 different countries. the purpose of the Sophos strategy was to get New leads and increase brand awareness and was accomplished via the following:

Walk ins: Like every other booth, customers would walk past our stand and see something that spikes their interest and our sales team were ready to ask qualifying questions to see if they were a customer or not. relying on walk ins is not a very effective strategy,it’s passive marketing and trade shows are NOT the place for passive marketing.

The Infotainment Strategy: Highly technical presentations suffer the problem of not attracting attention to start with. which is a problem- most presentations have a start, middle and ending– if customers come halfway through they have missed the crucial first half.

So a Mechanism needs to be in place to build the crowds and introduce them to the core concepts of the products and this allows technical presentations to start with a full audience.

By far the bulk of the people who came to the stand were attracted to the Magical entertaining infotainment presentations by me. The presentations would attract large crowds, those crowds would be introduced to the core concepts Sophos was trying to convey and the crowd were pre-qualified, so all the sales team had to do was walk up to those who raised their hands. simple-effective. At the end the crowds were sent to see a more technical presentation that also increased leads. If needed the sales team would lead prospects to area E on the floor plan above for a personal technical walk through of the Sophos Solutions. These terminals at area E were situated on the outside of the booth and therefor it would attract more walk ins. So once again the 1 word to describe the entire strategy is Demonstration – It starts with me building the crowds and introducing the concepts, then onto a heavy technical presentation, with the option of personalised demonstrations for those who are qualified.

Could this strategy be used in a smaller booth say a 10 by 10?
Yes. The crowds I generate stand on the outside of the booth, so for me no seating area would be needed, The heavy technical presentation could take up the bulk of the trade show booth. – seats would be filled and you would have people watching from outside the booth. the demonstrations at E above could be replaced with portable ipads which sales people could carry with them. The meeting area unfortunately would have to go in a 10 by 10 booth, and the internal area B  would be gone- you could make the booth shallower, thus allowing an area at the back for a private room to hold all your stock where you could hold all your giveaways. It would be tight but possible. you would want a booth with 2 open sides and conduct the heavy presentations in the corner. It is possible but it would take a bit of management


Welzman building the crowd and pre-qualifying