Are you a tradeshow coordinator or corporate event planner and feel like your company may not be maximizing its potential in its events program? You are not alone! Events, especially trade show events, are among the most complex and difficult forms of marketing in which a company can participate. Just showing up simply isn’t good enough. There is too much money invested in trade show marketing for failure to be an option, so what do you do with that task and all the pressure that comes with it?
Sometimes learning from others who have been through it before is a great way to avoid big mistakes. Practice makes perfect, and we learn from our mistakes, but learning from others may be just as effective and can save you a lot of money and suffering in the future.
Last June Forbes Magazine released an article on their website called 17 Skills For Highly Effective Tradeshow Events. We found this list to be quite accurate and with our 34 years of experience we are qualified in saying that the lessons in this article will bring you success.
We decided to share 7 of our favorite points from the article.
1) Know exactly what you want: It is not enough to just simply show up with a well-designed exhibit. What are your goals? Who do you want to meet? How will you measure the success of your show?
2) Stand out: A good location is key to standing out. The more you blend in the more your exhibit dollars are going to waste. People love free things, prizes and in-booth activities. At almost any show the exhibits with the most attendance are the ones that have really great presentations or are giving things away or that have some sort of interactive feature that is fun and exciting. If high traffic is less important than getting the attention of a smaller group of key people, this rule still applies. How will you stand out from all the competition those people will be meeting with at the show? What incentives do you have to make them remember you? Simply handing out a business card won’t cut it.
3) Point out your coolest feature: When you go to a trade show, which exhibitors are you likely to tell others about when you go home? Its probably not the exhibit that gave you a flier with 21 reasons why they can save you money. No, it’s the company that has a really cool product that you can’t wait to get your hands on. Trade show attendees want to see the latest and the greatest. Are you a trendsetter in your industry? How are you changing the game? This is what you want to be remembered for on the show floor.
4) Remember that clarity trumps persuasion: A trade show floor is information overload. People don’t have the energy, patience or mental capacity to solve a million riddles while they are at a show. The information should be clear and to the point. It is better to show than to tell. Get to the point and let your product speak for itself.
5) Be assertive, not aggressive: Unless your brand is so recognizable and in demand that it draws attention just by being there, you can’t expect to sit back and have attendees come to you. At the same time, you don’t want to trap people in a dominating, 0ne-sided conversation. Being assertive means drawing attention and getting the conversation going, while keeping people comfortable and at ease.
6) Be dramatically specific: Round numbers and times tend to be more easily overlooked. If you have an in-booth activity starting at 10:00am, try starting it at 10:13. A round percentage like 20% is easily forgotten, 21.98% is a lot more convincing.
7) Divert a river, don’t dig a well: Get your staff out of the booth and into the aisles. Get everyone’s attention and direct them to your booth as opposed to making a lot of noise from within. Be proactive and engaging!
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At DisplayWorks we know that what determines trade show success extends way beyond what happens on the show floor. A successful event begins many months before and extends far beyond. Our understanding of the ins and outs of successful event marketing make us uniquely qualified to help you plan, execute and successfully follow up on even the largest and most complicated events. Contact us today and speak with one of our experts about how we can manage your entire exhibit program from the ground up.