1. Calculate what it costs “Booth rental is really only part of the total cost of exhibiting,ˮ Denman says. “There’s travel to the show, customer hospitality and many other expenses.ˮ Denman is a member of the CAEM (Canadian Association of Exposition Managers) Hall of Fame. The association provides the following cost breakdown for a typical industrial trade show. This data can be used to estimate your total show cost. Exhibit space (the rental of space) 29% Exhibit design (the design, rental, construction of a booth) 18% Show services (power, telephone, table and chair rentals, etc.) 18% Travel and entertainment (the cost of sending staff to the show) 13% Shipping (shipping your booth, products, literature, etc.) 12% Promotion (pre-show promotion, literature for the show, etc.) 9% Other 1% So for instance, if booth rental costs $5,000, your total cost is likely to be around $17,250. Sounds expensive. But let’s say over three days you discuss with and acquire contact information for 150 good prospects, your cost of acquisition per lead is $115. You can further apply your conversion rate to give you an idea of your cost per sale. If your conversion rate is typically 10% (10 leads to get one sale), then you can expect to have 15 sales at a cost of $1,150 which may or may not be unreasonable for your product.