Top Tips for Getting a Positive ROI From The NAMM Show

Amanda Rueter

Nothing quite compares to the excitement of The NAMM Show floor. There’s an undercurrent of energy that’s magical and indescribable. The NAMM Show experience is so incredible that for many of us, the idea of missing out is absurd. But for NAMM Show vets and first-timers alike, it’s worth asking if attending The NAMM Show benefits me, my employees, and my business?

With that in mind, here’s my list of the top five ways attending The NAMM Show can provide a positive return on investment:

1. Networking. Whether you’re meeting new people at the NAMM Member Center or making connections on the floor, finding people who offer insights, advice, and inspiration is one of the most worthwhile aspects of the show.

2. Education. The NAMM Idea Center, TEC Tracks, and more bring in outside experts and industry professionals to share their top tips, ideas, and best practices on a wide array of topics.

3. Face time with vendors or retailers. This benefit goes both ways. Face-to-face interactions can have a huge impact on your business relationships, whether you have an exhibit on the show floor or if you’re a dealer looking to expand your product selection — or chat with your reps about current offerings.

4. Marketing opportunities. NAMM isn’t just a big deal to those of us in the industry — our customers follow news from The NAMM Show and are looking to us to see the latest and greatest that the music product industry has to offer! Being on the front lines and sharing your experience from the trade show floor is the perfect opportunity to get some eyes on your own business!

5. The Fun! Truly, nothing compares to that post-show glow. The excitement that surrounds a trip to NAMM can lead to a renewed sense of excitement in your business. Sometimes a trip away from home is the best way to get yourself refocused and ready to be your best self when you get back!

The NAMM Show has so many opportunities for each of us in the industry to learn and grow. Take advantage of all the ways that attending the show can yield positive results, and see how your business can thrive.

Also, don’t show up unprepared to earn that ROI. You and every person you bring to the show should have a goal to bring back enough value to more than pay for the trip. What that value looks like will be different for different people, but my top tip is to take the time to write up a post-NAMM Show summary. While the ideas are fresh and you’ve still got that post-show glow, spell out the plans you’ve made, the vendors or dealers you want to follow up with, and the ideas you have for taking your business to the next level. Then assess: What was my ROI?

A final thought: When talking about who’s going to go to the show, owners and purchasers are logically at the top of the list. Many opt for a top-down approach to choosing your delegation; it makes sense to reward those in the lead and those with tenure. But consider this: Your future leaders may already be working in your company. How much more successful would you be 10 years from now if you started cultivating that growth earlier? Look for people who are in new leadership positions or who you would like to move into leadership positions in the future, and imagine the impact of investing in them early. Show them now that you see their potential and watch them flourish down the road.

A Note on Networking
While we’re on the subject of networking, are you and your organization taking advantage of the opportunities available to you through NAMM Young Professionals (YP) and Women of NAMM (WoN)? From mentorship opportunities to scholarships, NAMM has made it clear that it’s here to support future industry leaders. It’s up to you to ensure you’re not missing out! Help others in your business get connected and make sure that the NAMM YP and WoN social events are on your calendars as you plan out your NAMM Show itinerary!

Amanda Rueter is the vice president of finance for Ernie Williamson Music.