Trade shows and exhibitions are great ways to gain exposure for your brand and meet potential clients in a physical setting, but they are packed with exhibiting competitors also trying to make their stand as approachable, new and exciting as you are. The competition at trade shows and exhibitions is tough. Attendees will easily overlook your stand if you haven’t put the (right) effort in.
Here are some ways you can make sure you are gaining maximum return on investment from your time and money spent on your stand as well as ensure that your business is the buzz word of the day!
The early bird catches the crowd
We’re not talking about getting there at sparrows on the day of the event, but rather preparing weeks in advance leading up to the event.
Do some market research and find out what people want handed out at expos and trade shows – what actually draws their attention these days? Find ways to be (and stay) the cool kids on the exhibition floor. Send out emails, social media posts, flyers, letters from pigeons if you have to – just get the word out and establish contact points for interested attendees to get hold of you after the exhibition.
Take a page out of Oprah’s book
You get a car! You get a car! You get a car!… Okay, so you don’t have to give out cars while you’re exhibiting, but everyone loves getting free stuff. Avoid the exhausted things like pencils, notebooks and calendars though.
Try something quirkier and more memorable then stick your logo on it. Entrepreneurs from the YEC (Young Entrepreneur Council) have shared that companies that give out logo-marked things like socks, laptop skins or Rubik’s cubes are more likely to attract people and increase their percentage of new customers. So, get quirky! You’ll also be far more memorable than ‘those guys that gave out notepads and pens’.
Make ‘em laugh
You’ve probably been told: “Humour is the way to anyone’s heart.” Funny enough, humour is also a way into a person’s pockets.
Create buzz with something humorous while you’re exhibiting. Remember – you want to provide people who come past your stand with an opportunity for conversation so give them something that gets them laughing and acts as an excellent conversation piece. There’s no doubt they will be talking about you – creating the buzz you need.
Scout the competition
Do your research. Sniff out the big dogs and learn from what they’re doing – and what’s working for them. Also, look at the unsuccessful stands from previous trade shows and take notes about their mistakes.
Display of the day
Be the Display of the Day! If you want people to notice, pay attention to and act on your stand then you must be willing to splurge a little bit on an excellent first impression.
We’re not suggesting fireworks, smoke machines and strobe lights (although we can totally help you out with that). Instead, have some great music, lure them in with a scent, string some gorgeous fairy lights and really put in some effort.
You may even have someone with a microphone running competitions or interacting with the crowd.
Planning to exhibit and keep your marketing department sane is an ordeal in itself. Try get a little help with your stand’s display. We are always here to provide advice and help you conceptualise your stand. Take a look at some of our previous work here.
Cue the queue
The human race is an inquisitive, strange species. We see a group of people and we want to know what they’re doing and why on Earth they are all there. We also want everything everyone else wants and sometimes – we have no idea why!
If you can create the longest line at the show, we can assure you that people will come running. Create the line and buzz by trying out a few of our previous suggestions.
Be wise and socialise! Be the life of the party and become friends with everyone while you’re exhibiting. If networking isn’t your strong point, ensure you place confident, charismatic and enthusiastic extroverts at your stand to promote your product or service. Encourage them to chat about upcoming events coming or – if you have extra in the budget, plan an after-party and invite potential customers. People are drawn to fun and excitement, so BE fun and exciting.
Get the most out of trade shows and exhibitions by trying a few of the above tips. For help creating an out-of-this-world stand, contact us!