Marketing with Mike Gruenberg

Note: This text is a paraphrase. To see the entire interview you will need to watch the video.
Welcome to Exhibitor Lounge sponsored by Exhibit I am your host and trade show Mixologist, Michael Gray. Here each week you receive simple practical and proven tips to improve your tradeshow marketing strategy, get better results, and maximizing your budget.

Mike Gray (Host): Today we are going to mix it up. I have asked a friend, a client, and a specialist in tradeshow marketing and ROI to join us in an interview process. So today we’re going to talk to Mr. Mike Gruenberg.

Mike Gruenberg (Guest): “I’ve been doing Sales and Marketing for 35 years. I’d like to add up all the tradeshow that I have gone to and managed but it’s too big a number.” “So over those years I’ve learned a lot, much through trial and error, on what works what doesn’t work, and I’m happy to share some of that with the audience. So I am going to try to give you some facts and ideas to take back and have more successful tradeshow experiences.”

Mike Gray: So your business is Mike Gruenberg Consulting. Give us an idea of your trade show background for the last 35 years.

Mike Gruenberg: “I always like to say that I began as a sales rep and worked my way down to VP of Sales. I have held positions as VP of Sales, VP of Global Sales, and Director. I managed the entire tradeshow process going back to management and saying this worked but this didn’t work. I took my experiences and translated them into things that made sense for future companies.”

Mike Gray: This entire video series I am just going to ask Mike what has worked so successfully for him over the years. I have actually seen this process in action where he guides the marketing team and the sales staff on the show floor. He pre-plans everything and takes them through their paces so everybody is on the same page.

Mike Gray: So if you’re a Marketing Manager, if you really need to generate leads and grow sales this will be a great series for you. I will put Mike’s entire biography on our newsletter. What stands out is that in any position Mike held, in marketing or sales, the revenues were significantly increased. So the expertise that he’s going to give you is great. We do not have a lot of time left today so I’m going to put Mike on the spot. I’m going to ask Mike if there is one ultimate idea that he would tell a client, company, or Marketing Manager to do to help them at trade shows. Mike, what would that one idea be if you only had one minute, which is all the time left.

Mike Gruenberg:Yes Mike, it’s all in the preparation. Why are we going to this show? What is the goal? What is our objective? Too often I go to trade shows and people have no idea why they are there. They know they’re going to LA, Chicago, or Detroit but why are we here? Are we here because we are introducing a new product, competing with a certain company or introducing a new president? The fact is many companies send a team of people to a trade show but at the end of the day what are we doing here? What is everybody’s role? If everybody is on the same page and everybody says, okay, we are here because we are introducing a new-product – great. What is everyone’s role? What’s the marketing guy doing? What’s the sales guy doing? What’s the customer support person doing? Everybody has to be together and it’s all in the preparation.”

Mike Gray: They each need to know their roles to help each other out.

Mike Gruenberg: “Mike, we talked about this many times, Marketing creates the need – Sales fills it. You can’t have one independent of the other. That’s really the critical mass that you have to achieve to be successful at a trade show. It all starts with why are we here, what are we doing, and how will we get there.”

Mike Gray: Excellent, Thank you Mike. We are going to explore this in depth.

As always please respond with your questions or comments and let others know about We will see you next week. Until then I’m your host, Michael Gray, telling you to relax in the exhibitor lounge.