We had an amazing response to a story in a recent eNewsletter that we decided to post the article on our blog so that everyone can benefit from our 5 Top Tips to help you successfully exhibit at a Business Trade Show or Networking Event.
There are many different marketing techniques you can use to promote your business, service or a particular product, some of which are more advanced and sophisticated than others. However, it is often the most simple and straightforward that is the most effective – such as exhibiting at a trade show or business event.
So what are the benefits of exhibiting?
The first and possibly most important thing to remember is that effective exhibiting is not all about selling. The focus should instead be on generating sales leads, collecting information and prospecting for new customers. You do all this by stirring up interest in your brand, product or service, raising the profile of your company and personally engaging with potential new clients.
Of course, there are many reasons why you should consider exhibiting and some of the most common for businesses and organisations to exhibit at trade shows and other events include:
- Enhancing the image of the brand or company and improving its visibility within your chosen market
- Introducing and explaining a new product to customers, demonstrating how it works and encouraging people to interact with it
- Reaching a large audience for a fraction of the cost of other marketing approaches
- Taking advantage of trade shows and exhibitions as a great PR opportunity
Marketers and exhibitors use different approaches to reach audiences at trade shows and business networking events, but all those experienced in this field apply their strategies with the same essential rules in mind.
These are the top rules of successful trade show exhibiting, some basic facts that are nearly always true. If you follow these rules, you will join the ranks of seasoned exhibitors and ensure your exhibition stand is the centre of attention.
1. Clean and Fresh
Older exhibition displays make your company seem less fresh and less innovative to visitors. There’s nothing more off-putting than looking at a tired display with sun-bleached graphics and dog-eared information. Invest a little money and update your display stand so that you WOW your audience – You’ll be surprised what impact a new roll-up banner can have!
2. Keep it Simple
The more words you include on your display, tagline or logo, the fewer times it will be read. Keep your message clear, concise and coherent so that even a fleeting glance will trap your message inside the reader’s mind. Besides, you should have leaflets or brochures to hand out to prospective clients describing your company’s products and services in more detail!
3. Consistency is Key
A golden rule for all business marketing is to keep your brand consistent. If you have an old exhibition display but new marketing leaflets, or vice versa, then this will dilute your stands impact and make your company seem in-inexperienced and unorganised. Make sure that your brand is consistent throughout all of your marketing efforts for maximum impact. This level of attention should be applied not only to your exhibition stand and banner graphics but also to your leaflets, flyers, corporate brochures, the latest company newsletter and anything else you decide to hand out to prospective clients at the show.
4. It’s all in the Planning
Find out if the exhibition is an annual event and book your place for next year. The possibility of receiving a reduced ‘early bird’ rate will be in your favour, plus the more you exhibit at the same show, the more likely you are to build a reputation and get repeat visitors.
5. Listen, Listen. Listen
The best people ‘working’ your stand are those that prioritise listening over talking. Learn to take an interest in what the visitors to your stand have to say and remember that you are not there to try and make a sale every time someone walks by. You’ll be surprised at what ideas can be generated from listening to clients and prospective clients. Not only that but it is a proven fact that people buy from people and not from hard-nosed salesmen reciting their sales speech to all and sundry. And, if there is one thing you should always remember … A smile goes a long way!
What are your top tips for exhibiting at a business trade show or networking event?