Every marketer who exhibits at a trade show always dreams of having the best booth, am I right? Although, sometimes the turnout doesn’t work in our favor. So what do we need to know about drawing potential customers to your booth?
Well, we have the answers to that! Read the following and take notes. I guarantee you will come out of your event as a rock star.
Implement These 10 Tips At Your Next Trade Show
We all know how important choosing a good spot is. At most trade shows, we already know where the center stage is, so you know you’ll find most people around entertainment. If you’re new to a trade show, do your research and find last year’s event map. You don’t want to be stuck towards the end of it all, because placement is important. Although, if you do happen to get placed away from the ideal location, you could still use the following tips to get a bigger crowd than expected. Get a good spot and book early!
With so many people drawn to social media, why not take it as an advantage? You can use social media to promote your presence to your existing customers. They may want to make an appearance to see all the new items your have to offer. You could also use social media for a contest. Let potential customers “like” your FaceBook account, or “like” a picture on Instagram to be entered in a contest. Maybe the contest is to take a selfie and share a hashtag promoting your company. This will give you free marketing for those who are not present at the trade show. The world is your oyster when social media is involved!
Presentation is always important. Make sure your displayed signs are legible from far. You want customers to be able to see your sign from far. Your visuals could be a reason why people get drawn to your booth, so make it represent what your company is all about. Presentation is not only important with the graphics that are being displayed at your booth, but also with the employees that are at the booth. Hire employees that will be excited and knowledgeable to talk about your product and company. Don’t choose someone that may come off as too aggressive while communicating, because this may scare away any potential customers.
Make sure your materials are professional and fun! They give your booth credibility to receive information. When making your marketing materials, be sure you put the most important information. Don’t overwhelm your customers with additional details. Give them the most persuasive information as to why they should be your customer. Your handouts should always be organizationally displayed or with your employees to hand out.
When you have actual samples of your products, customers will get to see exactly what you offer. You could even choose to sell your items at location if you think it’ll be a real hit with customers. I’ve seen many small retail companies show up at trade shows, and they’ve always had a crowd. Although, you should always know what type of trade show you’re attending if you decide to sell. Customers will be drawn into any sample, either thinking it may be a giveaway or for purchase. If you want to give away your own products at the trade show, it could also bring in a crowd. You just have to ask yourself if the product will actually be interesting to customers.
This is important to note! Make sure all the trash is picked up around your booth. People are not attracted to go to a messy place. If there’s no trash can nearby, make sure your employees clean up any trash to throw away later. Keep a trash can in your booth area, but let this be for your booth only. Also, do not let your employees eat at the booth. It’s unprofessional to eat in front of your guests, or even speak to your guests while eating! Keep it clean.
You can never go wrong with promotional products because people love to take things home with them. Giveaways always draw a crowd if you have a popular item. Check out our Top 100 items that always have success at trade shows. People love to receive these items on our list. Pick the perfect giveaway, and you’ll have people standing in line to have these.
Fun Games & Prizes
So sometimes you have to be very selective about which game you’re going to have. A favorite game of mine is the good ol’ fashion promotional wheel. Everyone loves to spin the wheel to win a prize, plus, this game always attracts customers. If there’s a line, have your employees talk to them about your product. I remember one extreme game I took part in was like a cops and robbers game. The booth gave guests a badge to display for the rest of the event. We would have to make sure to stay away from certain “bad” people who were dressed up. They were the ones taking away our badges. Although, we had to keep them displayed because there were also “good” people who placed stickers on our badges as a bonus. In the end of the game, the prize depended on how long you were able to keep your badge and with how many bonuses (to ensure that it was displayed properly). I thought it was fun, because I communicated with all the other guests that were playing the activity. Customers warned others from the “bad” people. Games like these bring people together and will have customers remember your company.
Incorporate technology (submission forms, Charging station, music)
This could be anything from music to a robot. People are attracted by technology, so why not use this as a way to get a bigger crowd. Even if you have charging stations at your booth, people will appreciate you for having this, and at the charging station, you could have a TV with a video loop explaining your company information. If you can’t do a TV, you have employees to communicate with those customers. These are great ideas that have worked in the past. The minor change of making submission forms via online versus written will work better at your next trade show. Of course, you should always have a backup plan if your technology does not work…ALWAYS. I will not stress enough how technology is not always reliable.
Word of Mouth
Lastly, I’ve seen many trade shows implement this strategy in different ways. The popular word of mouth is huge if you’re responding quickly to potential leads at your booth. Maybe you’re giving away a discount once a customer speaks to an employee? Customers won’t mind communicating with your employees if it offers them a good discount. I’ve also seen on-the-spot meetings or interviews at the trade show! Give a reason for your guests to talk. A lot of talking is done at trade shows, so make your company booth be a topic of conversation.