How to Optimize your Forthcoming Trade Show

 Trade shows are an important marketing tool that all kinds of businesses use to promote their products/and or services. With the advent of internet technology, like podcasts, webinars, video chats, and e-stores, the value of this traditional method comes into question. But you cannot put a good strategy down. Attending a Trade Show with a trade show booth offers the personal touch that online convenience could never replicate.

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These trade show conventions have the power to strengthen your brand, create a long-lasting impression, build partnerships, find more clients, level the playing field, result in direct sales opportunities, and generate tons of leads. Thus, trade shows should always be a part of your marketing arsenal to ensure there is a variety in your marketing campaigns. Sometimes, when you stick to one type only, you end up discounting and neglecting other possible target audiences. Here are some tips so you can optimize your forthcoming trade show:

Let’s Beef Up What’s “IN”: Develop your Digital Content

 Yes, you read that right. Digital content is an important tool for a successful trade show. Today, the world is modern and digital, so you have to leverage technology to promote your brand, services, and products. Everyone has a mobile phone or tablet, which people bring with them and access all the time. As the popular saying goes, if you cannot beat them, then join them. You can incorporate digital marketing into your trade show plans to ensure optimal exposure. You can use it before, during, and after the event. Here’s how:

  • Before the Trade Show

 

 You can take advantage of the many digital marketing opportunities at your disposal to spread awareness about your trade show. On your company website, make a special section that highlights the details of your forthcoming event and invites everyone to join you. Consider making an e-form, so your clients and co-exhibitors can make an advance appointment with you during the event proper.

 Next up, build a social media campaign utilizing all your channels. Let all your followers know about your upcoming show often. Use your own consistent and unique hashtag for your Twitter, FB, Instagram, Snapchat, and more. Apart from that, use the hashtag of the name of the trade show you will be attending, so others who aren’t your followers can see you.

 Holding a contest or a giveaway entices people to be more engaged with all your posts. Encourage them to join and share your post regarding your trade show details. Your trade show exhibit will only be successful if people know where to find you. This will expand your digital reach by leaps and bounds, making sure that your clients and possible future consumers will know where to go.

 Then, rely on good old fashioned direct e-mail marketing. Send a personal e-vite to all your loyal clients. Tell them the details of the trade show and what they can expect from you by going there. Entice with an on-site coupon and an additional discount coupon if they bring a friend.

 Finally, there’s Google AdWords and other paid promotions like FB or IG sponsorships to spread the word and help you attract the right people. Make sure that your contact information is visible in all your media products so that the clients will know where to get in touch with you.

  • During the Trade Show

10x20 aluminum trade show booth 

 After a full blast digital pre-show campaign, finally, the big day has arrived. Keep in mind that your social media efforts should not end just because your trade show has begun. Throughout the event itself, continue to be active by posting Instagram stories, FB live videos, or Snapchat videos to show snippets of what’s happening in the venue. This will encourage and excite your clients, who aren’t there yet, to come. If the event is happening in a span of a weekend, then you can expect your live streaming efforts to generate better attendance the next day.

 Apart from videos, take a lot of pictures of you and your team, along with your clients. Consistently load these in all your social media channels with engaging accompanying captions. If you have space for it, set-up a unique backdrop with your company logo to serve as a photo wall for your clients. Encourage them to take pictures and post these on their social media accounts, which will expand your reach even more. As you do your live posts and photos, don’t forget that all-important hashtag, which you must also inform your clients about, as it has the power to tie everything together.

  • Post Trade Show Tune-up

 

 Since you’ve invested a lot of time and effort in the planning and execution of your exhibit, don’t end things just because the trade show is finally over. You have a lot more work to do in terms of evaluating your marketing plans and making connections with your leads.

 It is vital to evaluate your trade show performance based on the plan that you set from the very beginning. You have to see if you were able to reach your goals. This evaluation process helps you and your team identify which parts were successful and which areas you need to work on. Having this data on hand will help you plan the next trade show. It will also give you more insight, which you can use to improve your other marketing strategies like your advertisements, blog posts, etc.

 Moreover, you have to put in a lot of effort into qualifying those leads that you received during the show. Send a short email within 24 hours to anyone who showed interest during the exhibition. The key here is having the right length of the text so that your intended recipient will read through your entire message. Anything that is too long will get junked. Make it short, sweet, and right on point.

 Your email should remind them of who you are and what you’re offering. You should also thank them for dropping by to see you. If possible, it is best to include a photo of your team taken on the day of the trade show for instant recall. Give them a discount code and place a gentle call to action.

 As you can see, from the beginning to the end, digital marketing plays a vital, yet often neglected component in your trade show game plan. They make an astounding difference in generating leads and converting those into actual sales. That being said, apart from digital marketing, there are other strategies, which you must utilize to up your trade show game plan. Here’s how to get it done: 

First Impressions Always Last

Trade Show First Impression

 For the benefit of your business, always keep in mind that making a good impression is critical. People are visual creatures and it is but natural to make judgments and assumptions about your company with just one look at your trade show booth. You only get one chance at making a good impression, and this happens in a tenth of a second, so make it count!

 It is your job to make your booth as visually appealing as possible to draw in the interest of the trade show attendees. Make your booth attractive with various colors and interesting details. Provide comfy chairs and tables that encourage your consumers to hang out with you and have a chat. A very attractive trade show booth will undoubtedly give you an edge over your competitors because people are generally drawn to what’s more pleasant to the eye. Remember that your image and branding matter. Both can influence consumer opinions, so do everything in your power to make your trade show booth make you stand out from the rest of the boring pack

Not Just Attractive but Approachable 

 Apart from being attractive, you have to make sure that both are also highly approachable. Remind your team to always wear a friendly and welcoming smile to anyone that happens to pass by. If you prepared company brochures or flyers, ask your staff to be on guard so that they can give them to anyone who approaches your booth.

 To be approachable, you have to make sure that your booth is not undermanned. Nothing spells bad customer service than unattended clients. Make sure you hire enough staff to help you with the day of the exhibit, especially if you have a pretty large booth set-up. Allot some time before the big event to train your staff. Check and see if they know about your products and services. Ask them practice questions that could be asked by any trade show attendee. The key here is to divide and conquer. Make sure that each staff is assigned to a particular division, but you also have to ensure that all of them know key details so if one division turns out to be stronger than the rest and packs more clients, the others can easily pitch in to help.

 And if those don’t do the trick, then the scent of freshly brewed coffee and warm pastries will certainly be a welcoming olfactory sign to get people to your booth!

Don’t Forget to Go the Extra-Mile with the Organizers

 

 It is expected for any trade show exhibitor to be on a friendly basis with the organizers. However, once a company secures a slot for the trade show, they tend to put the organizer in the back seat. The customer takes precedence. Consider this as a gentle reminder to never discount the power of an organizer. Doing a little extra to be friendly towards them can help in your success.

 This personal relationship can translate to a better position with higher visibility and better traffic for your booth. It can mean additional sockets at no extra charge. Moreover, if you are planning to attend trade shows regularly, the chances of you seeing the organizers again remain high. Being extra nice to the organizers will also have an impact on your future trade show exhibits.

Host a Contest in your Booth

 

 Everyone loves contests because it feels good to win! One of the best ways to attract more visitors to your booth is to hold a contest. Aside from offering a grand prize, you must have minor prizes that many people can take home. Everybody loves freebies.

 This contest will not only generate traffic but more importantly, it will generate leads. It can even serve as a venue for you to do a product demonstration so that people can see or even try your actual products. Build up anticipation by scheduling your contests throughout the day. This way, people will have your business on their minds as they go around the event.

Make Sure that your Best Clients Attend the Show

 

 Does it seem redundant and wasteful to invite clientele who are already loyal and who you know will patronize the brand? Of course, it is not. Never discount the power of having your best clients attend the show. For one thing, they will be your best spokespeople to promote your brand for free. Their word of mouth testimonials, as they share and interact with the event crowd, weigh more than anything you will ever say. Having them there to support you is vital to your trade show success.

 Also, the chances of your client buying from you on the day of the exhibit are high. Studies indicate that it is so much easier to have someone who has already purchased from you to buy again, as opposed to enticing someone to buy for the very first time. If your best clients don’t plan to attend the show, it would be a good marketing strategy to give them a complimentary ticket.   

Create an Experience

Trade Show Gif 

Don’t merely show and tell about your products, but instead create an exciting experience that will be memorable for everyone including the other exhibitors. You may find a potential supplier or investor in your audience. To illustrate, make your product or service interactive. If people can physically handle your offerings, then they will be more inclined to stay.

 This interactive display will draw the crowds into your booth, and the more people congregate, the more interest and engagement you generate. With this technique, you will have the attendees snapping pics and taking videos, which they will post on their social media accounts. This expands your company’s reach. You’ll never know, but maybe one of these posts will go viral. Through this, you generate not only interest but a better understanding of all your products and services.

Be Sure to Learn from Others

 

 A large investment is needed to make a trade show successful. Those who are novice exhibitors make the fatal mistake of focusing only on their brand. This short-sighted mistake keeps them from developing better ideas and fresher concepts. Take note: Before you can become a big trade show exhibitor, you first have to learn from the very best.

 Study other successful trade show booths. What makes them work? What elements drive traffic into their booths? You have to analyze their strategies to see how they market their products and services. People who have been in the field the longest have a lot to teach you. Sometimes, you don’t even need to talk to them, all you have to do is watch because actions do speak louder than words.

 

Bottom Line

 

 Trade shows may be old and traditional but they are not outdated. They can generate more business for your brand. They also can help you network by connecting with other exhibitors and potential suppliers or even investors. Trade shows have the power to adapt to this modern digital world. They are a classic marketing tool that has withstood the test of time. Trade shows are here to stay for many years.

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FIND THE BEST DEAL ON YOUR NEXT TRADE SHOW BOOTH

Call today to talk with a trade show specialist. (801) 872-4055

Or view our products!

Trade Show Booth, Trade Show Booth Success Tips [2021 Booth Design]

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