How To Make The Most Of Your Next Trade Show Or Exhibition
Trade shows and exhibitions are a fantastic way of promoting your business, whether you are showcasing your products or services to a local audience at a nearby event, or at a national one. Trade shows provide businesses with the opportunity to boost their visibility in their market as well as their reputation. They can also be lucrative, with chances to generate leads from a much wider audience than they might normally reach.
Depending on the type of business you run, the logistics of attending a trade show can be easier said than done. Exhibiting requires a lot of preparation and planning, especially when it comes to transportation. At Evesham Transport we have enabled numerous businesses to exhibit at trade shows across the country by transporting their products, display stands, and other relevant equipment to trade shows and exhibitions.
Over the years we’ve learnt a lot about exhibiting and have picked up some good tips along the way so we’ve put together this blog post to help you make the most out of your next exhibition. Read on to see our top tips for a successful exhibition.
8 Tips To Help You Stand Out At Your Next Exhibition
1. Define Your ‘Why’
So you’re thinking of exhibiting at a trade show? The first thing you need to consider is your ‘why’. What is the purpose of exhibiting at the trade show? What objectives do you hope to achieve? You might just plan on attending to build your connections. Maybe you want to increase your business’s visibility or you feel like it would be a great opportunity to generate leads. Once you have your objectives, you can create a strategy about how you exhibit to help you achieve your goals.
2. Who Are Your Audience?
When you do start planning out your exhibit one of the crucial points to consider is who are your audience. Who are they? Who will be attending the trade show? Are they likely to attend? Will the decision-makers be attending? What are they likely to be interested in and what problems do they have? The more you know your audience, the more you can do to make your brand enticing to them.
3. Create Eye-Catching Displays
It’s not enough to just attend the exhibition. If you want to attract attention you need to create an eye-catching display. Your display stand is the first thing that attendees will see when they approach your stand and you need to make a good first impression. Think about how you can use your branding to create a bright and interesting-looking display that stands out from the other exhibitors and captures the attention of attendees.
4. Beware of ‘gimmicks’ and ‘freebies’
If you’ve ever been to an exhibition, you’ll know that you rarely leave empty-handed. There’s always someone handing out free pens, stationery, water bottles or tote bags. Cupcakes and sweets are also common on stands as are gimmicks like games and competitions. Whilst these do create talking points and can be fantastic icebreakers, they are not always a great option. Just because your stand is busy doesn’t mean the people taking your freebies are your ideal audience. In fact, if someone does want to talk to you who is your ideal audience and they can’t get to the stand as there is a queue of people in front of them, they might not want to hang around to wait to speak to you. Remember this when planning your freebies.
5. Engage With Attendees
For most businesses, the main purpose of attending an exhibition is to generate leads but in order to do this you need to engage with the attendees. Try to keep your conversation light-hearted, start with small talk and then ask engaging questions about them and their business to make it sound like you are interested in them. The more you learn, the easier it is to provide them with valuable information which will help them with their pain points with the help of your business and products. You should remember that you should not be hard selling to them but should be approachable, friendly and helpful. They will then be more likely to want to connect with you after the event.
6. Use Social Media
Social media is an excellent way to promote your attendance at a trade show and generate buzz before the event. Use social media to inform your connections that you are attending beforehand. On the day post updates and pictures of you, your stand and your products, and be sure to include the trade show’s hashtag and location in your posts (where relevant).
7. Follow Up With Leads
After the trade show, you’ll probably have a good-sized collection of business cards that you exchanged during the exhibition. Now is the right time to go through them and connect with anyone who you had a memorable conversation with. LinkedIn is the perfect option for this. If you want to continue a conversation with someone, reach out via email. This should be personalised to the individual, offers a compliment such as ‘it was great to meet you’ and where possible should refer to a specific detail of your previous conversation e.g. “I really enjoyed our conversation about _______”. Depending on the outcome of these follow up’s you may be able to book in a 1-2-1 and this could lead to an opportunity to work together.
8. Be Organised
Create a checklist before you go to ensure you have everything you need for the exhibit. It may be worth doing a practice set-up to see where everything will go and how long it will take to get everything set up. This way you can ensure that you have enough time on the day to have everything set up before the tradeshow opens. Think also about how what materials you will need on the day including your business stationary like business cards and leaflets, banners and perhaps even a tablecloth and have this ready to go. Ensure that what you offer fits with your company values for example if you promote sustainability, would it be a good idea to offer one-use literature that will go in the bin or should you consider the use of a QR code?
Stress-Free Exhibition Transport For You And Your Business
In conclusion, attending a trade show is an excellent way to showcase your products, build brand awareness, and generate leads. By defining your objectives, knowing your audience, creating eye-catching displays, engaging with attendees, using social media, following up with leads, and getting organised, you can make the most of your next trade show or exhibition.
You may find that if you have a lot of equipment and products to exhibit, transporting it all yourself might not be an option. If you’d like to make your next exhibit as stress-free as possible and have extra hands to help you unload, you can also consider our business transportation service which is available to businesses who want to exhibit.
At Evesham Transport, we’ve been able to help many businesses boost their sales by increasing the visibility of their brand at trade shows and exhibitions across the country. You can see a recent case study of one of the businesses we’ve helped here. Our fleet of vehicles can easily transport your products, display stands, and other relevant equipment to your next trade shows or exhibitions without the fuss.
Contact us today to learn more about our services.