HPD Blog

Friday, November 6, 2009

SEMA Show: Day 2 (11/04/09)

We are back! One day under our belts, three more to go. Today brought another set of high-profile visitors: Bobby and Graham Rahal stopped by to check out the Fit engine, Sarah Fisher and Jay Howard came by to say hello and rumor was that Danica was at the Apex show across the way, but we have yet to see her in our neck of the woods.
Again, there has been a lot of interest in the Fit engine and HPD’s Honda Racing Line program. We actually met a father-and-son duo who race their Honda Accord on dirt and were interested in fitting traction-control to their Accord racecar. With all the stories we have heard about the various racing series around the country, Accords racing on dirt was a first, at least for me.
One cool thing that I didn’t mention from yesterday was the badge-scanning system they have here. Any exhibitor can order a scanner and use it to track all the visitors to the display. Each person attending the event, whether an exhibitor, buyer, media member, or attendee, wears a badge that has a barcode on it. The barcode stores each person’s information, i.e. name, company, position, contact information, etc. We can scan an interested party’s badge and immediately, we have all their contact information. After the show, we can send out information about HPD and our various, upcoming racing activities. Some visitors are aware of the scanner and ask us to “scan them”; others learn about it when we offer to “scan then” and sometimes, just for fun, we do ‘drive-by’ scans, scanning those who least expect it. When you are at the show all day, you find ways to make the work even more fun.
News alert: Giveaways are huge around here! At our Honda display, we have key chains and Honda Racing/HPD decals that are literally flying off the countertops by the handful. We actually had to have HPD send us another case of decals, but I guess that is a good thing, and maybe soon we will see our Honda Racing/HPD logo on cars and tool boxes everywhere. As for myself, I picked up a Falken Tires stress ball in the shape of a helmet. I am sure that as the week goes on, it will come in handy.
Something interesting that someone new to the tradeshow scene might not be aware of (at least I wasn’t), is that many attendees travel with rolling suitcases. I didn’t know exactly why at first – it is Vegas, after all – but soon you notice people dropping giveaways into a top opening. It is crazy! There are people with suitcases full of free stuff. I can’t help but picture them trying to open their cases up at the end of the day, and stuff just comes pouring out. Some exhibitors are actually giving away (or selling, I am not quite sure) cardboard suitcases with slots at the top made for dropping in literature and small items. Maybe it is our fascination with free stuff, but I can’t even begin to imagine what these attendees are going to do with their cases of stuff, especially if they are here for all four days. What I want to know is, after they get home, where do they put it?
So, today was full of giveaways, interesting “racecars” and drive-by scanning. What will Day 3 have in store for us? Tune in tomorrow to find out…

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