CRFA Show and Coffee Fest recap

March 13, 2013 / Life on Earth, Start-up, AvidTap

My co-founders and I attended the CRFA Show in Toronto earlier this month. A day after the CRFA Show, Kaz and I then drove to NYC for Coffee Fest. Both shows were awesome and we talked to many interested customers. At Coffee Fest, AvidTap also won the best new product award. The organizers told us that we got the highest score in the show’s 20-year history!

When I started AvidTap I told myself that I’ll do whatever is necessary including things I wasn’t comfortable doing. While we were at these tradeshows, I paid attention to what my co-founder Kasra Nejatian is doing. He is a much better sales person than I am. Below are things I learned.

Say Hello

One thing that I noticed is that Kaz says “hello” to everyone that walks by. This reminded me of that Hakkanese conference for which I was helping to sell some CDs. Back then I was shy and basically stood there while people walked by. Needless to say that didn’t work at all. Most people just walk by and only a few stopped to ask what we were selling.

While at the CRFA Show, I challenged myself to say hello to every single person that walks by our booth. It’s not something I’m used to doing standing there saying hi repeatedly, but it sure worked. People are sometimes just walking by the booths without paying much attention, by smiling and saying hi they start paying attention to you.

Quick Observations

Another thing that Kaz is very good at is making quick observations. He can start a conversation by noticing something about the person very quickly. It could be something on their name tag, something they’re carrying, or even just random situations such as somebody waiting on their friends.

This is something I’m still not good at, but if I attend more tradeshows I will get better.

Make Connections

Sometimes we’d talk to somebody who is interested in online loyalty program, then in that situation I noticed Kaz offering to introduce the person to companies that do that. This is generally a good thing to do anyway. If the company cannot help the person but knows another one that can, why not help the person? By doing so we not only get their contact information, we also made a good impression.


If the company does well I’m sure we’ll hire sales staff, but I’m happy to say that I’ve been there and done that. When it comes to things I’m good at, I can pursue them with tenacity, with persistence, and with relentless effort. However, with my eyes on the prize I’ll also continue to stretch myself to do anything necessary.

In other news, there’s a new video up: