Trade shows are the ideal business event designed to reach potential customers and grow your target market. It is a niche environment, generating interest, raising brand awareness and making sales. But trade shows can easily become cluttered, nonsensical and a missed marketing opportunity if done poorly. Below par trade show booth design and confusing messaging can lead to a waste of marketing funds. And we often see frustrated business owners trying to utilize these poorly made displays because they have already spent their marketing budget on them.
As a business owner, finding new and exciting ways to market your business successfully can be a daunting task. You know you want to connect with your consumers, successfully raise brand awareness, and make sales. And although there seems to be a big push to digital marketing, traditional efforts can still make an impact. One traditional format that still has a positive ROI (return-on-investment) is trade show displays in Toronto.
To Be or Not to Be… Social
As an exhibitor when it comes to marketing your next tradeshow there isn’t a better or faster way to announce your upcoming presence than social media. Done properly it is fast and efficient and can reach your intended public.
I have observed throughout the years that many clients at Trade Shows will walk down the aisle and shy away from looking at booths because they are afraid to be called over or be sold too. Here is a way to naturally engage your client.
Visuals or Graphics help to attract the client. So one must ensure that the main graphics that is designed for your booth attracts attention. You want the client to look your way basically and even come into the booth for a closer look.
An example of London’s “So To Bed” Company poster
Ok so now you attracted the client, what now?
This is where it helps to know what problem your potential client is trying to solve. An example of this is, say you own a lawn mower and it is the best lawn mower you ever had, it cuts your lawn beautifully, it’s the perfect height, it’s quiet and is built tp last. You love everything about it, but there is one major problem, it runs on batteries and you can never finish your full lawn without having to recharge it. That a big problem for you. Now if you went to a trade show and saw a solution to that problem that would totally interest you and you would most likely buy that product.
Finding out what problem your product solves for your potential customers is a crucial step in the sales process. Make sure you do that.
Get your message out there! Why should people buy from you? What are the advantages of owning your product or buying your service? What are your strengths? Why should they trust your company over other companies?
Trust and agreement that is what your goal is – reviews, success stories help build that. The more your potential customer sees that other people are praising your companies product or service the more comfortable they feel in going with you.
Offer a good guarantee, show the customer you stand behind your product or service 100%
Be human when talking to the customer, do not use a sales patter if you can not deliver it naturally, talk to the person and find out what they are interested and how you can truly help them. LISTEN to them and acknowledge them so they know you were listening to them and answer their questions always.
I know no one would ever do this 😉 but don’t knock the competition, it’s petty and has nothing to do with the sales process.
THE KEY IS THE FOLLOW-UP
Hopefully, you have collected a number of names that you can follow up with. After your trade show do your follow-up calls or emails in a timely manner, don’t be too pushy but do ask them if they would like a demonstration of your product or service or a more in-depth meeting to go over their needs and how your company could help.
No matter what the outcome of the initial follow-up is continue communicating to them by giving them useful information that they could use and you will be surprised at the results.
Related Tags: Trade Show Display Design
If you build it, they will come… if it has the cool factor they will come
Have you ever stood in line at a booth because they had something fun and unique you wanted to do? I sure have many times. One of my favorites was a shooting range with a pellet gun, now that was one busy booth!
When you use interesting promotional ideas and have an inviting booth, these can help your booth exhibit turn into an amazing experience which leaves a lasting impression on attendees. In Future trade shows your exhibit will be the sought after destination.
Find something unique for your Trade Show Exhibit
If you’re looking to be a successful exhibitor, you have to be diligent in your search for new and unique ways to attract attendees to your booth. In the sea of exhibitor’s, you have to find interesting and exciting ways to stick out from the crowd and attract a lot of attendees to your booth. When done successfully the attendees turn into new sales revenue for your company.
You should be looking at trends and what people are attracted to. One interesting idea that would attract a lot of attention would be free headshots. Photos are huge, look at Facebook or Pinterest or any other social networks.
When in doubt hire a professional
Getting a professional photographer and setting up an area in your booth where an attendee could sit and get a pro headshot would attract a lot of attention. In today’s digital age it can be printed instantly, emailed to their email address or uploaded to their phone, so it’s instant gratification.
Of course hiring a professional to help create that unique and user experience will only help in the success of your trade show display and will of course free one up to do all the other important tasks that will be needed to ensure a successful show.
So get the creative juices flowing, it doesn’t have to be complex, it does have to attract attention, though, and remember when in doubt hire a professional!
Sometimes it’s hard to compete with the major corporations and their vast pocketbooks, but not all that glitters is gold.
Far to often the consumer is enticed by the gadgetry and special effects of trade show exhibits, I know I have, but at the end of the day what do I remember? Usually, I remember they had a cool booth, which is ok if you’re selling booth design but not great if your selling company insurance.
Don’t get me wrong, a booth that has that kind of attraction can work if all the elements are in place like but you still can compete even without the special effects by having:
- Well trained staff, that can engage the public and confidently and competently walk them through your product or services.
- Letting the public see what under the hood, to see what you’re all about.
- Keeping the interest there while they are waiting to be looked after.
The above points work with all exhibits and will enable you to compete with the big boys.
Let’s look at this a bit more. A tried and true way to attract a public into your booth is to have a place to sit and relax, add free coffee and wi-fi, an attractive and informative brochure or a video playing in plain view you are suddenly engaging that person. Then add competent staff for further engagement and you have a recipe for success.
Whether you are an experienced exhibitor or a novice looking to gain your footing in the trade show marketing world, trusting your smart marketer’s intuition is a great start. However, your smart marketer’s intuition will only carry you so far. Below, are tips for successfully navigating the pre-, in- and post-event stages of trade show planning, along with trade show marketing ideas to help prepare you for your next event.
The foundation of an effective trade show marketing campaign starts months before your event, so it is important to get a good head-start.
Pre-event marketing tips:
Sending engaging pre-event emails to clients and prospects is an effective way to generate buzz around your brand.
Building a landing page in support of your email campaign can help boost conversation and help you set meetings with prospects prior to your event.
Using your media contacts to publish press releases and articles about your company and your upcoming event can help draw in new prospects.
Marketing on the trade show floor is where all the action is. Having the proper trade show strategies in place will help your organization increase trade show ROI.
In-event marketing tips:
Having a well-groomed and friendly staff helps attendees feel comfortable with approaching your booth and will leave a lasting impression on visitors.
In-event promotions such as giveaways, contest and games are effective at attracting crowds and helping staff engage attendees.
Product demonstrations can help pique the interest of passersby while also providing a real-time look at your company’s capabilities.
After the event has ended, you and your team need to turn your attention to converting your newly acquired leads and prospects into clients.
Post-event marketing tips:
Make sure your sales team quickly follows up with prospects via phone or email to keep your company top-of-mind.
Create content, such as blog and social media posts, to cover the highlights of your trade show campaign.
Write a post-event report to outline where your staff excelled and where you need improvement for future reference.
Related Tags: Trade Show Booth Design
Know your potential client, is the mantra of today. This will always save time and money.
Exhibitions and Tradeshows modus operandi have not changed it is essentially…
1. Attract a potential client
2. Interest them
3. Communicate your message
4. Sell them whatever your selling
Now, number 1 is crucial of course and how do you do that? Its done by knowing what interests your potential client. That, of course, can be many things within your particular industry, so you need to narrow it down, but how?
Research, that’s how good old fashion research. This is as simple as asking your existing client base what was it that made them buy your particular product or service or what they were interested at the time. Ask enough client this you will get a really good idea of what interests them.
Search the internet – find some forums on your service or product (there is a forum out there for everything) see what they like, what they don’t like, basically what their buttons are and what would make them come to your booth.
Once you have compiled this information create your exhibition graphics and message around what was found in your research. An example of this is that being an IT company the most important thing your existing clients was all your technicians could explain things they were doing in plain English and were very responsive. Now going on the forums, you found out that potential clients really like a fast responsive IT team that could fix problems quickly and efficiently.
Armed with that information you build your message and graphics around that.
So, from your research, you find likes and dislikes and you basically give that information back to them in a way that communicates.
That handles the first, second and third point. For the fourth point just make sure your sales team know and have studied the results of your research and the sales part should be easy.
Related Tags: Trade Show Design Toronto