How to Get the Most Out of Trade Show Marketing
by Arina Smith Marketing 27 June 2018
Trade show marketing is one of the easiest and most effective marketing methods. Trade shows are also exhilarating and are a great place to make connections. But so many businesses still struggle at trade shows.
Not all trade shows are successful and not all businesses will make their ROI. Trade show marketing isn’t rocket science, but there are some marketing methods that work better than others.
Do you want to walk away with a pocket full of cash and great new connections at the next trade show? Read these trade show techniques to get the most out of the next trade show.
First Impressions are Everything:
A guest’s first impression of your booth is everything. If you have an amazing booth with helpful hosts, your guests will likely continue to be loyal customers after the trade show is over.
But your booth really has to be amazing. There are many opportunities to get creative with a booth set-up, such as having monitors or a unique booth design.
If you decide to not go with a crazy design, use your branding or service to entice customers.
Even simple aspects can attract guests. There’s a lot of walking at trade shows and drinks are expensive. Offer a place to sit and some free water. From there, your guests will be interested in your brand.
The average guest has an attention span of one-tenth of a second. This is even shorter at a trade show; there are many vendors, things to see and things to do. You have to do what it takes to get the guest’s attention.
Are you struggling to think of ideas? This useful site helps a lot.
Have a Large Staff:
Say you’re a guest at a trade show. If you pass a booth with barely any staff and no one is helping, would you visit that booth?
The more people at your booth, the more you’ll attract guests. Your guests enter your booth because they’re curious about your brand.
Your staff is the main way to entice guests. They will draw people in and get their attention. Offer engaging strategies such as free products. After your staff attracts plenty of onlookers, more people passing by will visit your booth.
Your staff is there to promote your brand but also to help guests. They explain your products and services and how they will help guests. This helps generate trust early on, so your customers will continue supporting your brand.
A casual theme and appearance also help. If your staff is wearing suits and tries to use high-pressure sales tactics, your guests won’t be interested in your brand. But if your staff looks like normal guests and have a friendly demeanor, you’ll likely gain more customers.
Promotional Giveaways are Classic:
This was mentioned in the last statement, but it’s important to emphasize.
Promotional products are integral at a trade show. And the reason why is simple: everyone likes free stuff. Guests won’t complain when someone offers them a free product.
As long as your logo is printed on the product, they will always remember your brand.
You can even hand out giveaways as prizes. Host a game where the winner earns rewards. You can also offer a free product when guests sign up for a newsletter.
When people see your guests with their free products, they will want one. The guests will direct the other people to your booth where they can get the products. This introduces more customers and increases brand awareness.
For best results, offer giveaways in your niche. If you’re a tech company, hand out free flash drives. If you’re a health company, hand out free smoothie shakers.
Market Yourself Before the Show:
Who said the marketing begins at the show? Marketing yourself before the show will help guests know who you are before the trade show even starts.
Social media makes this easier than ever. You can constantly post updates and statuses, tagging the convention.
You can also contact guests personally. If you have a publicist, you can get emails of all of the guests and send them your newsletters.
In addition, flyers and print marketing materials are always useful. Send them out to your mailing list and to other guests who provided their address.
How early should you start marketing? A month before the show starts is always ideal.
But keep in mind — this is marketing and networking, not selling. If you go overboard trying to sell your products, you won’t get as many positive results.
Market With Other Brands:
Who said customers were your only market?
When you market with other companies, you receive a lot of benefits. And you’ll meet several brands while you’re at trade shows — often, you’ll meet more brands and connections than actual customers.
Don’t make it about competition. Say hi and lend a helping hand. Stay in contact throughout the show. After the show, exchange contact information and collaborate.
This helps establish great business connections but is also a marketing opportunity. You can share leads with each other, creating more service for both companies and can even double your sales opportunities.
But you should still be cautious. These brands could also see you as a competition and could work to jeopardize your brand. Try to collaborate with brands that sell different services and products, but ideally still in the same market or niche.
Guests love trade shows because they can test out items and interact with different products. Rather than simply talking about your products, let customers demo them.
Interactive booths always form a crowd. You’ll reach out to a wider market because you’ll also attract customers outside of your niche. And your guests will have a better understanding of your products and your brand.
What if you don’t have an interactive product? Technology still gives you an interactive opportunity. Have tablets on display where customers can review diagrams and other helpful media.
Now You Know All About Trade Show Marketing:
There’s nothing in the world like a trade show. But so many brands don’t know anything about trade show marketing. Always have a creative and interactive booth. And connect with customers and other businesses as much as you can.
For more marketing tips, visit our resources.