As regular readers of our website will know, digital marketing is one of the most effective ways to promote your business. It’s relatively easy, cost-effective, and can be done from the confines of your office space.
However, offline marketing isn’t dead, so it is still important to connect with your potential and current customers in other ways. One technique to consider is event marketing, be it an event you hold yourself or, for the purposes of this article, at a trade show that pertains to your particular business type. People who attend trade shows are there because they already have a vested interest in the type of product you might have to offer. In some ways, this makes a trade show the perfect arena to market your business.
How To Effectively Market Your Business At A Trade Show
At a trade show, you will have the opportunity to showcase your product, meet new people, and hopefully, create new customers. So, to ensure your time at a trade show is a profitable one, here are some tips we hope you find useful.
#1: Start marketing before the trade show begins.
Start to build hype about your trade show presence in advance. Spread the word through your email, website, and social media marketing, and let people know that they will be able to interact with your product at the show. Give them an incentive to come, perhaps with the offer of a discount on what you sell, and encourage them to invite along others.
#2: Register as early as possible.
The earlier you sign up for the event, the greater the chances of you securing a prime position for your booth at the trade show. This is important, as for you to market your business effectively, you need to be positioned in an area where you are guaranteed to attract the most footfall. If possible, try to book a central position, and not somewhere that is tucked away behind the location of similar businesses to yours.
#3: Create a striking visual presence.
You don’t need to spend a fortune on your trade booth, but it does need to be visually attractive. The more you can do to catch the eyes of others, the better, as they will naturally wander over to you if your booth stands out from the mass of others. So, include banners and other types of eye-catching signage. If you can afford it, include interactive touch screens too. Lighting is also important, so make sure your booth is brightly lit, perhaps with your branded colors.
And rather than pitching a makeshift marquee at the trade show, consider hiring help from a trade show booth design company, as you will automatically have something that guarantees visual appeal. A professional booth is an effective marketing tool in itself, as the better looking it is, people will subconsciously associate the same quality with your business.
#4: Give people an incentive to spend more time at your booth.
You need to do more than create something visual, as people will still wander away after a short period of time. So, give people an excuse to stick around, perhaps with a contest or hands-on demonstrations of your products. This will give you more time to market your business, especially if you have staff on hand to talk to the people who have approached your booth.
#5: Give away branded freebies.
Not only does the promise of a free gift act as an incentive for people to wander over to your stand, but if they are branded, your booth visitors will be less likely to forget about your business. There are all kinds of things you can brand with the help of a relevant promotional merchandise company, including t-shirts, caps, pens, notebooks, and in the case of the following link, a custom car air freshener. Ensure you have lots of giveaways to hand out and remember that, despite the expense, they could lead to greater profits down the line.
#6: Train your staff beforehand.
If you are taking staff with you to the trade show, ensure they know how to market your business effectively once there. Role play sales scenarios and work with them to come up with the answers that people might ask at the event. Brief them on all the things you want them to convey at the show, such as the relevant information about your products. Give the more shy members of your team confidence training so they don’t gravitate away from your potential customers at the event.
#7: Go armed with business cards.
After speaking to potential customers at the trade show, don’t forget to leave them with a business card. This will ensure that they have your contact and website details to hand, and they will then be more likely to stay in touch with your business. You can even take it a step further and create business cards specifically for the trade show, that highlight your booth and products you’re showcasing. There are some business card design tips here, so have a read, as the better your card looks, the more professional your business will seem.
These are just a few ideas, but continue your research into trade show marketing to make a strategic plan. The goal is to ensure you get enough booth visitors, capture their information, share yours, and most important of all: follow up with leads!
You want to be sure you have a way to capture the contact information of your booth visitors, and have a solid follow-up plan in place. Securing a booth at a trade show is a real investment, and you want to maximize your ROI. It’s worth spending the time (and money) on creating a solid lead capture system in order to convert those booth visitors into paying customers!