Booth Babes are Bad for Business

Ever wondered why companies hire outrageously attractive, scantily clad women for trade shows? I get Comic Con and Auto Shows, but that’s about it: you’re appealing to the lowest common denominator. But according to the former marketing guru of Mixpanel, Appcelerator, and Huddle, they really don’t “convert” attendees to sales leads.

How do I know? Well, I actually split-tested this a few years ago and the results were indisputable. If you have invested in a trade show to generate new business, using booth babes is a lead conversion boat anchor.

He writes that only about 1 in five leads generated revenue. So after managing to secure two identical booths at a show, he stocked one with booth babes, and another with “grandmothers.”

Upon meeting my contractors, my sales VP was right. They weren’t just older than your typical booth babe, one was literally a grandmother. Shit, what have I done?? But it was too late now. After updating the sales team on our staffing strategy it was time for the big show.

The “grandmothers” managed to secure three times more leads because they knew the content and weren’t intimidating to talk to.

More here.

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1 Comment

  • I agree. When I go to trade shows I am usually there for work to research product and I quite honestly don’t want to be schmoozed … I just want to get information on a product and move on. I feel that if a company has to hire booth babes, their product is not compelling enough for me to waste my time learning about. It actually creates more suspicion than attraction.
    I’m a technician … I know where I sit in the food chain and I’m cool with that, I know that the HiFi world and AV world is like progressive rock in the 80’s, not really known for it’s eye candy.