Think you’ve got everything checked off your trade show checklist?
Attending a trade show is a great way to increase exposure and growth for your business and this is true whether you’re a startup or enterprise. However, like most campaigns, it takes planning and organization to make your trade show a success. This trade show checklist will help you stay on track so you can get the most out of your show.
Before the Show
The Right Exhibition Stand
Your journey to a great physical presence at a convention starts with the right kind of exhibition stand. In most cases, a modular exhibition stand is going to be your best bet. These stands work well for companies without enterprise-level budgets for two reasons: They can be taken on a plane by a single person inside of luggage, and they can easily modify themselves to a change in the floor plan. If you can purchase exhibition stand parts to be drop shipped to the final location or the exhibition stand company is local to the location, then you may be able to take advantage of larger exhibition systems.
Picking the Right Lead Capture Tool
Digital survey lead generation and survey apps like QuickTapSurvey give you the ability to generate qualified leads, the number one takeaway from a trade show. You also save the cost of renting very expensive badge scanners from the exhibition itself. QuickTapSurvey also gives you the ability to customize your lead capture tactics via a contest entry – great to draw those crowds in. You can also capture data while offline, so if the Internet goes down, you don’t.
Determine Your Primary Goal
Determine what stage of business you are in. You may be in the customer acquisition stage, the maintenance stage, the pivoting stage or the conversion stage. Decide if sales are most important to you, or gathering emails, or generating B2B leads, or looking for investors or buyout opportunities. Your goals will direct the way that you use your survey tools, including QuickTapSurvey.
During the Show
Engage, Engage, Engage
Your booth staff at the show should be the most gregarious of your employees. They should have been trained in customer acquisition techniques, using the various features of their QuickTapSurvey survey to lure in visitors. The trade show is the time to approach without fear, using indirect sales methods to disarm potential customers to build a relationship.
Push, Not Pull
Top buyers at trade shows are hounded constantly, and they are tired of it. Your booth staff must learn how to make those customers think that coming to the booth was their idea. You might use QuickTapSurvey to engage these people with a survey about their needs in the business, why they came to the show, or the feature sets they are looking for. They will get the hint, and they will also be quite happy that you are looking to serve their problems rather than just offer a square solution for a circular need.
After the Show
Narrow Your Niche
There is no better way to cultivate a more direct marketing strategy than a trade show. Right after the show, analyze who responds best to you. Change your marketing to focus on them more. You will achieve a much higher ROI and conversion rate while reducing your marketing spend.
Get Word of Mouth Advertising Going
Now that you have people talking, you want to keep them talking! Good word of mouth can be followed up through social media. Find the leaders of your targeted social circles and employ them as unofficial PR agents. Stay in contact with them and use them to open your brand up into new spaces.
Also published on Medium.