Trade shows and exhibitions are a traditional marketing method to showcase your new products, bring awareness and new leads to your company. Even though digital marketing is trying to take the lead, the trade show industry still remains solid ground, especially for more business-oriented companies. A report made by Display Wizard shows that 95% of the regular exhibitors prefer in-person event networking. However, there are numerous events out there and there is no need to mention the importance of choosing the right one for your company in order to see success on the table.
Where to start from?
When starting your research on the existing trade shows, you should put them in three categories:
- Trade shows of my industry
- Trade shows in which my company’s participation will make sense
- Trade shows I do not know anything about
Trade shows of my industry
As a result of your research, pick around 2 main events in your industry and create a roadmap for your stand. What would this roadmap include? Ways to create your stand in a way, which will increase your company’s network. To do so, small details are not to be neglected. A trade show stand should be overlooked as a local showroom or office, where you want to create the best experience for your visitors in a way, which will showcase your company in its best light. This includes things like promotional and demo products, catering, panel talks and VIP meetings. As we all know, first impression is everything and this is the experience your visitors will connect your company’s name with. The influence you had on people can be even shared on their social media accounts, which is also a bonus boost of your brand awareness.
Trade shows in which my company’s participation will make sense
When talking about network expansions, you will have to get out there and showcase your company across multiple markets. One benefit of doing so is to efficiently connect your sales team with those markets. This type of category should be overlooked as if you loaded your car with some sample products and a laptop with small presentation, all prepared for a door to door selling trip. For this category of trade show, you wouldn’t need a big space. A small but well-optimized stand where people can pass by and get connected and informed about your brand is just what you’ll need to succeed. Maximizing your network before the space you use is the right way to do the job! However, to effectively let people, know about your future participation in the show, your company should start a social media campaign 3 to 5 months beforehand.
Trade shows I do not know anything about
The answer will always be no if you don’t ask. The same goes with the third category of diving into the events you know nothing about. If you don’t try, you won’t even have the chance to succeed. Pick 2 or 3 trade shows you know nothing about, explore the opportunities you have there in the list of attendees and contact them for meetings. This will help maximizing your network and give some space for great opportunities. If there is nothing on the way for you, you didn’t waste your time as an SME.
And there you go, after this article you will have a plan on where to start with your trade show participation. The important thing is to set clear goals and then decide where do you want to start from. The attention and time of your clients and visitors remains the main fight at exhibitions.
Author: Toufic Hawly
Editor: Stefani Stoilova