Trade show planning does not stop at the show itself. It takes months of preparations to be successful. Here are five effective tips to becoming a trade show success long after the show is over.
1.) Pre-show Marketing
Although hundreds, possibly thousands of people attend trade shows, letting the public, especially current customers, know where your booth will be located is a good idea. Send out direct mail pieces with promotions that are only for the show. An example of this would be a direct mail piece that was sent out by a cell phone company. They offered free activations (normally a $30 value) and phone rebates that would only be effective if they purchased the phone and service at the exhibit. They received a huge amount of new business from this promotion. With an economy that won’t be getting better any time soon, it is crucial to have coupons or some other form of discounts available to the attendees.
Another valuable pre-show marketing mailer that could be sent out would be to inform potential attendees of a drawing you will have at your booth. Whether it be for a briefcase, vacation, or a t-shirt, everyone loves to get free stuff. This may be reason enough to get them over to your booth.
2.) A Dazzling Trade Show Exhibit
Ah, yes. This is the most important tip of all. Obviously you can’t exhibit at a trade show without a trade show booth. With only 3 seconds to gain the attention of your potential new client, it is important to have a display that will catch their attention. When it comes to graphics, less is more. Having a photo of your product with just a few words would be remembered more than having several photos with a paragraph of text. It needs to be something easy to see and read while walking by.
The display itself is equally as important as the graphics. One of the most popular displays is called the pop up display. Just as the name implies, the frame “pops up” into place. It is very easy to set up and take down. Having a display that is simple to setup yet has a unique design is key to gaining attention. The Alumilate Hybrid Display is one of the most innovative displays on the market. With the unique look of the frame and canopy, to the flawless, stretching fabric used to print your graphics on, you are sure to get positive feedback from attendees. This is also very lightweight, keeping the shipping costs at a minimum.
The Xpressions Fabric Tension Display is a three dimensional display that can be configured in several different ways. The graphics are also interchangeable, making a new display at each show. This is a great way to keep your display fresh and unique.
3.) Staff Training
Your booth staff can make or break your trade show success. Consider these two examples: Booth A is staffed by employees who spend more time eating, drinking, talking on their phone, and talking to each other than they do talking to potential leads. These staffers are also not knowledgeable of their products or company. However, the staff at Booth B are professionally dressed, end phone conversations when potential customers enter your booth, do not eat while in their booth, and are very passionate about the company they work for and the products they sell. Which booth are you most likely to visit?
4.) Charming Giveaways
As I said before, everyone likes to get something for nothing. Consider giving away items that can be used regularly, rather than something that is of no use. T-shirts, pens, water bottles, and bottle openers are all items that can be used daily. It is important to have the name of your company on these items in order to be remembered by these potential customers. If you are looking for something that is sure to get attention, consider a giveaway wheel. The attendees will spin the wheel and get the prize shown.
5.) Lead Follow-up
Although the show may be over, the marketing is far from complete. While at the show, get the contact info of those individuals who may be interested in the products/services you have to offer. After the show is over, make sure to follow up with these people. Don’t wait too long though; a week after the show would be a good time to start calling those people back.