• Exhibitor Trade Show Tips

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    Have you ever attended an exhibit, trade show, job fair or event with various booths throughout the venue? I’m sure you saw some really great booths and some that looked like they were thrown together in a few seconds. Am I right? Which booth were you the most drawn to and most likely to stop by and visit? We are all guilty of “judging a book by its cover” at some point in our lives and this happens more often than most would like to admit.

    FIRST IMPRESSIONS ARE EVERYTHING – no, really. Did you know that you have an average of three seconds to make an impression?

    The point of exhibiting at any business showcase is to draw in as many potential customers as possible, but it can be done in a variety of ways without having to spend the “big bucks” to make your booth bigger and better than the rest. You want quality over quantity and below are 10 tips for effective trade show planning that can help you decide what best fits your business and its bottom-line.
     

    Choose the right types of displays

    Having a display that requires minimal time and labor is a huge help in your show success. Use height to your advantage.

    Tabletop displays are often blocked by people’s height. If using a table display, try to utilize overhead lighting to draw attention to your display and stand out.

     

    Monkey See, Monkey Do

     You’re a tourist looking for the best food truck and one has a longer line than the others. Which one do you want to go to?
     
    Social proof generates trust.
     
    Seeing other people engaged with a brand makes them want to see what the buzz is all about. Get other employees into the show and have them surround your booth dressed as attendees.
     
    Have people interact with your exhibit and staff, but make sure there are always employees available to engage with potential customers.
     

    Extend Your Reach / Use Promotional Giveaways

    Hand out big stickers, wearables, light up trinkets, etc. and turn it into a game. Use social media to promote this to extend the conversation past the tradeshow.
     
    These are great because the more people you get to wear them; the more others will want one. It’s also a great conversation starter for attendees- and your brand and booth are inserted into that conversation.
     
    Check out this article to find the best giveaways tied to your message and/or brand. Need to purchase promotional items? Find a Lubbock Chamber member here.
     

    Tricks of the Trade

    Most trade shows have exhibitors with the same target audience as you. Why not trade leads and contact information?
     
    This is one of the best trade show booth tips in terms of ROI. You’ll instantly double your sales opportunities.
     
    I don’t suggest trading contacts with direct competition, but partner with brands selling different products and services that happen to have the same target market.
     

    Let them Interact

    Try and make your product or service interactive, people will stay and a crowd will form.

    I know not all brands are easy to display, but figure out a unique way to allow your booth traffic to interact with your products or services.
     

    Create an Experience

     If you can’t display your business in an interactive way, consider creating an experience/scenario to help make your business more relatable.
     

    Stop Selling!

    What’s the best way to generate interest? Show interest in others first.
     
    Don’t have your staff sell your product unless they are interested in it. The way you gain interest is by being interested in others first.
     
    Ask questions about their company and where they came from first. Almost every time they will follow up by asking you the same. It’s much more natural than introducing your brand after you’ve introduced yourself.
     

    Create a “buzz” – Utilize Social Media

    Promote on your website and get the word out with LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Ideally, this should be done pre-event, at event and post-event. Include photos of your display with your booth staff. Acknowledge comments on the social media sites by tweeting or liking back.
     

    Create the “WOW” factor

    Choose graphics wisely. It’s best to use between 5-10 words, depending on the size of your display. Let your booth staffers tell your organization’s story. Use a video loop on an iPad or flat-screen TV to showcase your organization and draw in attendees. Your logo printed on a tablecloth is the finishing touch.
     

    Follow up FAST

    Follow up with leads soon after the show. The longer you wait the longer they have to forget who you are and what you said.
     
    People have many interactions at trade shows. As much as you want to believe yours were different, it’s tough to remember everyone’s name and product after the show.
     
    Don’t be afraid of reaching out too quickly. Typically wait one day after the show to follow up with potential prospects. Waiting too long will dilute the connection.

    This article will help you accomplish this daunting task.
     

    Remember: You have an average of three seconds to make an impression on an attendee. Make sure you captivate them and don’t make them work too hard. Convey a clear message and design your display wisely.
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