Just a few quick tips and reminders on how to get the most out of your tradeshow program this year, no matter what your budget is.
- Location, Location, Location
Give some thought to the location of your exhibit when committing to the show. Main aisles, corner spots or places near association exhibits are all strong for floor traffic. If you have any strategic partners or vendors that are important, try getting a location close to them to maximize your traffic.
- Preshow Marketing
Engage in a preshow marketing plan to let your customers and prospects know that you are exhibiting at the show. Be sure to include your booth number for easy reference. You can also add booth # snipes to any of your print ads that will hit before the show or with issues that are taken to the show.
- Invest In Your Exhibit
Make sure you are investing in professional exhibit material. You might not get another chance to make a first impression, and you want your brand and products/services represented in the best light. Everyone has a different budget, and there are solutions at every price point. MAI can help you locate the right one for your needs.
- Be Present & Be Engaging
This one is simple, but one of the most important. You want to make your exhibit as approachable as possible, and this includes who it is in it. Always make sure your exhibit is appropriately staffed and never leave it unattended. Put the phones down, look people in the eye, and try TALKING to them. Oh, and also, DON’T EVER EAT IN YOUR EXHIBIT.
- Target Your Targets
Have an idea going into the show of who you want to talk to. Set as many meetings up in advance as possible, as schedules fill up fast onsite. If you have an in-booth promotion, make sure it is qualifying your traffic down to the desired group and not just a free for all!
- Utilize Promotional Items
Branding is critical on the show floor, and one of the best ways to maximize show buzz is to have a great giveaway or theme. Have at least two types – a higher-end giveaway item for valued customers and prospects and lower priced item for everyone else. Ensures no one walks away empty-handed.
- Capture Contact Data & Follow Up ASAP
Make sure you have a plan to capture contact information for prospects you engage at the show and group them into “A,” “B” and “C” list prospects, so you know who is “hot” at the moment. It’s also essential to have a post-show follow-up plan in place with a phone call, email, or mailer depending on what category they fit.