February 14th, 2017 / Insight posted in Blog

How to make the most of your time at exhibitions

Exhibitions are becoming increasingly popular as they can really get you noticed and generate plenty of leads. But if you are attending an event with hundreds of other eager businesses, how do you stand out from the crowd? Here are some tips to get the most out of your time at an event.

Grab their attention

You need to catch people’s eyes as they walk past. Try using large graphics or a striking image that will get you noticed. Incorporating a screen to show moving images can be very effective at grabbing attention. Pop-up stands are a great choice for visuals. You also have the option of incorporating brochure stands and iPads. But, whatever you decide, it must be in line with your brand and your message.

Draw them in

One tactic is to offer free gifts to entice potential customers to your stand, but you may find that people will come for free stuff and just move on quickly. It is far more effective to run a competition, such as a raffle or a fun quiz, but with something valuable like a consultation or free sample of your product as the prize. People are more likely to come over to speak with you about your product or service, and you have a higher chance of discussing what they are looking for and generating leads. Having this style of competition is also far more cost-effective than handing out loads of freebies.

Marketing

It’s a common error to focus only on the actual day of the event: to get the most out of your time there, you also need to promote it. Start telling people a few months in advance that you will be attending the event and invite them along.

Another way of promoting your attendance at the event is to take advantage of the organiser’s opportunities given to exhibitor members. It’s important to remember that you’re not just paying for the actual space at the exhibition, you are also paying for a way promote your business. For example, the organiser may have a show guide or mailers being sent out in advance to promote the event. Ask if you can get your business featured in them and build anticipation.

Data capture is essential for you to be able to follow up with prospective clients. You may not have time at the event to discuss in what they are looking for in detail and how you can help them. By collecting their information, you can arrange a phone call or face-to-face meeting, giving a higher chance of making a sale.

Staff

Your employees can make or break your success at an event. Having the right staff is essential to your time at an exhibition. There’s nothing worse than going to an expo where the staff look uninterested and disengaged – make sure your staff know the importance of their role and set targets for them to speak to a certain amount of people.

Conclusion

Trade shows can be a really productive part of your marketing plan. Their highly-targeted audiences give you the chance to start conversations with plenty of potential customers. If you’re planning to exhibit at an expo or trade show, follow our tips to ensure you maximise the opportunity.

Do you have any tips for exhibiting at events? Tweet us @kingstonsmith and join the conversation!