Trade Show Contest Ideas


Promoters and marketing people at trade shows like to offer contests and other events and activities to attract attention for their products and services. Trade show visitors are there because they either want specific items for their stores or are looking for general things for their own homes. Adding trade show contests makes things a little more interesting.

Guess the Quantity

Have entrants guess the number of objects in a large glass jar. Ensure the contents relate to the trade show. For example, if it is a remodeling show, fill the jar with nails. If it is a confection show, fill it with jelly beans or gumballs. Count the exact number ahead of time and label the bottom with that figure. Encourage trade show guests to guess the exact number, leaving their information on a card next to the jar or depositing it into a box or other jar.


Host a contest covering trivia relating to your trade show and industry from last year. Set the contest toward the middle of the show and use a microphone so your voice carries through the crowd. Give prizes to guests answering correctly. You might want to ask about the top-selling product or company in your industry, how different products are made and the owners of different companies. Award smaller promotional prizes to the first person who answers the questions.

Scavenger Hunt

Make up a list of items relating to your show and host a scavenger hunt. Award a grand prize to the first guest who correctly finds everything on the list or give smaller promotional items, like keychains or cups, to all participants eventually finding all the items. Have guests search for such items as a blue business card, the address to a specific company and even smaller items found in purses, like a pencil or paper clip. Alternatively, give each booth a different type of sticker and guests a sheet listing all the sticker types. Give prizes to everyone able to find all the stickers.

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