Getting ready for a show can be a hectic and stressful time, especially when more than one falls close together. Make sure you plan in advance to get the most out of your visit. This might seem like stating the obvious but the more you plan the smoother it goes. Write down your goals and your aims as it’s always important to remember what you need and how you will gather it. It’s never too early to gather as much information on the event as possible. The more you know the more targeted you can be in your activity.
What am I getting out of this show? Leads? Sales? Brand awareness?
Who are the attendees?
Where is the show and where is my stand located?
How do I get there?
Do I have a charger?
Do I need to organise an exhibition stand?
What literature/giveaways am I taking?
If you know your aims and your audiences touch points you can design your stands, brochures, information and pitches around these things to make the most impact. Don’t waste your time taking sugary snacks to a health and wellness convention for example.
Do you know who your audience are already? Are you actively looking to engage people and invite them to meet you? Pre-event communication is key to making the most of your businesses temporary presence in another area. If you have an email list of current, old or potential clients in the area, think about designing an email to invite them. Keep those that subscribe up to date with event information and details on appointments if you would like to make any.
Start mentioning it to current clients when you speak to them, personally invite them or even add a new footer to your email. Promote your attendance on social media, through PPC or even on radio or TV. Of course this depends on your budget and your goals. If you’re generating sales at the expo then having qualified leads attend will give you a much better conversion than simply relying on pitching to passers-by.
Make it as easy as possible for people to attend and give them plenty reasons to do so. Make use of any complimentary attendees, speakers or events to entice even the staunchest fence sitter.
Your stand needs to look the part, having fully branded displays will strengthen your brand presence but you also need to consider practicality. Are you attending with a team, alone or with a single colleague? Do you have the budget for a pre-prepared area or will you need to bring your own display? How much can you carry? Could you carry more if you bring your colleague who is always at the gym?
A lot of exhibitors opt for roller banners for maximum portability. We currently offer the Barracuda banner to satisfy this portion of the market as it offers the best in durability and print quality combined with portability. The roller banner can be used to accentuate a simple stand with high quality branded and informational graphics. Great for smaller operators or those with a limited capacity for set up.
The 3x3 Pop up Stand is another popular option for larger businesses. The larger display area gives fantastic eye-catching branding opportunity and is easy to set up. It also comes contained in a wheeled portable container which doubles as a podium (with separate branding area). This is great for displaying brochures and giveaways as well as for delivering pitches and demonstrating products and services.
Remember, always check the space allotted to you and prepare accordingly. If you are using dated banners with old campaign content, consider getting new banners designed and printed in advance so you leave plenty of time. Nothing says you care less about potential customers than a lack of effort.
So, you have your beautifully designed stand, you’re wearing your branded jacket and you’ve actually combed your hair. Now, what are you going to do to wow your potential clients? One of the classic options is the promotional goodies and giveaways. You won’t find a tradeshow anywhere that doesn’t have at least one exhibitor disappearing under piles of key rings and novelty stress toys. Try and keep it relevant. Representing real estate? Then Keyrings are great… Coffee Supplier? Perhaps an Americano Mug with your brand front and centre would be more appropriate. Pens offer a great opportunity to be offered while gathering leads as a keepsake.
If you’ve decided to take literature make sure it is in date, appropriate, well designed and well written. Equally important is to make sure you take enough to see you through. Nothing is sadder than a bare stand and a well-worn final brochure, quickly tugged from your grasp by the exhibitor as you turn the final page. Literature is great for keeping your business in people’s minds. It can also serve to move recipients online for future information such as social profiles and website landing pages.
This final stage could be seen as the most important of the five. Never leave your conversations hanging. Follow up your leads as soon as possible (Some software packages can send emails as people fill in their details. These are great for instant engagement.) Make sure you reference your specific conversations if possible and answer any questions they might have posed. To this purpose, it’s important to take notes and names as often as you can. The more information you gather, the more personal your responses can be.
And that’s it, a few handy tips on getting the most out of your exhibition. Get in touch if you have any questions about the display stands, literature and giveaways that we can supply to support our event.