It's become something of a science, this phenomena of trying to distinguish oneself from the crowd at a bustling trade show. Some companies try to lure prospects by giving away trinkets, others by inviting participation in interactive activities such as putting contests. Many, of course, still do it the old-fashioned way, by positioning impossibly attractive young women in front of their booths to prompt traffic jams of neck-craning males.
Then, there's QualNet.
The Cleveland-based Internet service provider likes to distinguish itself from the pack of competitors by suggesting it's closer to the Net's backbone. But how to stand out on a trade show floor? At a recent trade show at the IX Center, the company outfitted its reps in lab coats. When teased about this subtle but effective gimmick, one rep was heard to say, "Yeah, we'll check your blood pressure if you sign up for Internet service."