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What Does an Event Specialist Do?

Four traits of every successful product demonstrator

You keep seeing event specialist jobs online, but what the heck does that even mean?  You might have grand ideas of party planning, wedding coordinating or gala hosting, but you’d be wrong.  While event planners and event specialists require many of the same skills, they are entirely different jobs.

As far as online job postings are considered, event specialist jobs refer to what most people know as product demonstrators. Still not sure what that means? No worries.  Here are a few key duties you can expect to be doing in your new job as an event specialist or product demonstrator:

Passing out samples: It’s one of nature’s great truths that anyone with a pulse loves free stuff, especially free food.  Many event specialists can be found in between the aisles at your local grocery store or wholesale club pushing sample-sized portions of a variety of delicious fare.  To be a great product demonstrator, you’ll need to be friendly and able to tolerate the system manipulators who come back for their fourth helping of microwave chicken pot pie.

Educating on the product: Companies pay the big bucks to have their products demonstrated in stores by talented event specialists because they anticipate questions will be asked about the products they’re selling.  Not everything that’s demonstrated is edible (there is not a whole heck of a lot of explaining to do on mini quiches).  Small appliances such as vacuums, gadgets and services are all commonly demonstrated, and a well-informed event specialist should be able to ease a potential buyer’s fears through a thoughtful explanation of benefits.

Recommending solutions: Anyone who has ever bought a computer printer knows the frustration of getting home only to find they’re missing a cable, ink and paper.  Event specialists should not only be able to answer the questions customers ask, but foresee potential problems they may experience with their products, specifically not having the accessories you need to actually use the product you’ve purchased.

Encouraging the sale: If products sold themselves, companies probably wouldn’t be hiring any event specialists.  Product demonstrators should be able to explain and demonstrate products so well that customers are sold at the end of the demonstration.  Should they need an extra nudge, an event specialist should be there to provide it without any snake oil salesman tactics.

So why are these jobs called event specialists? It’s anyone’s guess, really.  The most likely explanation is that product demonstrations are often called “events.” So an event specialist is someone who is able to execute on an event plan from start to finish.