Some businesses are plagued with misconceptions about the best way to promote themselves at events. Business owners or marketing teams may decide to pass up on ripe opportunities or execute in an off manner simply because they are ill informed.
To that end, we’ve decided to briefly outline these common trade show marketing myths, so you can steer clear of them when planning your next event.
Displays Are Too Expensive
Yes, if you want a custom designed trade show booth that can cost you upwards of $7000. But a simple banner stand with graphics will only cost you around $200. Couple that with an iPad kiosk used to display all kinds of marketing materials and you’ve got yourself a bargain. iPad kiosks are becoming increasingly popular at trade shows because of their sheer versatility and inexpensive price tag. For ideas on how to use them, check out this article.
Event Marketing Is The Same As Other Marketing
If you don’t have the money to hire an exhibit consultant, event marketer or graphic designer who can guide your decisions, at least read up on the key differences between event marketing and traditional marketing. Event marketing is part of a larger sub-segment called experimental marketing, and while the differences maybe subtle, not understanding them could cost you leads and thousands of dollars in wasted trade show budgets. For example, creating graphics for an event is not the same as for an ad. Also, social media event messaging differs from day-to-day social messaging.
Business Cards Are Great For Follow Up
Too many exhibitors are still collecting business cards or manually writing down contact details. Fail! Not only is this incredibly time consuming, but creating an automated follow up email campaign using business cards is near impossible. Consider using your iPad with a lead capture app as a way to attract attendees to your booth and collect their contact details on your device. You can engage people with a trivia quiz, contest or scratch to win giveaway on your iPad. Those contacts can be easily funnelled into an automated email campaign.
Smaller Brands Don’t Get Returns
Sure, it sucks to be a small fish in a big pond, but there are ways around this. Assuming you are at a large international trade show, try getting your booth close to a big brand and leveraging off of their foot traffic. Don’t worry about being overshadowed by their impressive display and instead get more creative with softer tactics. For example, as people leave their booth consider giving away a food item with branded packaging — a tactic that is becoming increasingly popular. You can also steer clear of huge trade shows all together and focus on smaller regional ones.