No matter the size of your company or what industry you’re in, we’re pretty sure there’s a tradeshow or conference out there for you, and your target audience – people who are in a position to buy from you. But that’s just one of the reasons to attend a tradeshow. Others include:
- Gain media coverage
- Gain speaking/interviewing opportunities
- Scope out the competition
- Networking potential (investors, partners)
- Increase PR/Social Media exposure
- Hiring/talent acquisition
- Distribute marketing collateral
- Increase website traffic, backlinks
- Build up marketing lists
- New leads, new sales
Over the years, QuickTapSurvey has modernized the lead generation process for thousands of companies attending tradeshows around the world. And a question that keeps getting asked over and over is this: how do I calculate tradeshow ROI? The worst thing you can do is pay to exhibit without knowing exactly what you want to get out of the show. With that said, here are 5 other common mistakes people make at tradeshows.
Related case study: Alcatel-Lucent’s tradeshow success with QuickTapSurvey
Not participating online
Every good tradeshow has a parallel online destination generating an equal amount of buzz. Event hashtags soar in popularity before, during and after the show, and it’s the number one way to drive conversations and augment your ROI. Leveraging social media has multiple, long-term benefits – you can connect with potential customers before the event, rank high in Google’s search results for the event, and extend your marketing reach to those not attending the show. It’s unbelievable to think how people are not taking full advantage of this powerful tool that requires nothing more than the investment of time.
Aggressive booth staff
We cannot stress this enough: pick and train your employees and equip them to succeed on the tradeshow floor. Attendees are not just physically tired, they are also sick of aggressive booth staff trying to force a conversation. Take a softer approach that will make them stop and engage. Booth design, presentations, swag – all of these take a backseat to having well-trained booth staff.
Poor quality giveaways with your brand name on it
Instagram or it didn’t happen! Translation: leave the usual to your competitors and do something that’s truly out-of-the-box and snap-worthy. Tradeshow swag lives on well past the event, so think of ways you can leave a lasting impression on attendees. Recently we’ve seen coffee and branded cookies all over the place – it makes complete sense when you consider that attendees are tired and coffee shops have huge lineups. It’s a memorable, worthy treat – one you’ll really be remembered for, unlike another pen.
Fishbowl lead capture with no marketing automation
Not only is this a must in 2016, but an iPad lead capture form can be designed with fun in mind! Look for survey apps with built-in contest entry, where every aspect of your contest is automated and easy to handle. Whether you choose a swipe-to-reveal or spin-the-wheel, contests at trade show booths can add a ton of excitement and draw in the crowds. It’s a great way to stand out for all the right reasons while capturing crucial lead information for your sales teams.
Not offering a show special
Experts agree that this is an under-utilized marketing tactic. Promo codes are a great way to drive traffic to a landing page prior to the show, as well as physical traffic to your booth. Price promotions and limited-offer show discounts can give your target audience a real reason to come and see you, especially if your competitors are also exhibiting.
Also published on Medium.