Trade shows are a great opportunity to put yourself in the spotlight and let potential customers have some face to face interaction with you and your brand. It’s a chance for people to finally put a face with the name and build a positive association with your company, which is why it’s crucial to make sure you have everything you need when the crowds flock to your booth. Chances are you’ve already spent money getting there and setting up your booth, and you don’t want that to go to waste. If you want to succeed, don’t overlook these five things the next time you head to a trade show.
Set Yourself Apart – The worst thing you can do is look and sound like all the booths that surround you. You don’t need to have a circus act going on, but you should be different. Be creative and have fun! Accentuate what is unique to your brand and do it in a way that people won’t expect. For example, if you specialize in publishing, make miniature books that give a detailed description of your company history and what you do. Which brings me to my next point…
Souvenirs - When people leave your booth, they should not be empty-handed. Make t-shirts, bumper stickers, buttons, and whatever else you can think of to leave a positive impression. For something a little different, try making trading cards of everyone on your team. You can list their stats, skills, and fun facts. This will tickle a few funny bones and make your company seem like it has a soul – because it does.
Engage – Guess how many people want to be victims of a halfhearted sales pitch? Zero. Don’t bark at people when they come close, like a dog with socialization problems. Ask them a question! Get to know them a little bit. Then find a way to segue into who you are and what you do. If both of you are enjoying yourselves, you’re doing it right.
Everybody loves snacks! – The popular booth is always the one that has treats. Who can resist a freshly baked chocolate chip cookie or rice krispie treat? The bottom line is you will provide relief to hungry trade show patrons and it will generate positive attention for you – that’s what we call a win-win.
Have a Contest – Everyone likes something for nothing. If you have a new app you want to showcase, give away some hardware, like a tablet, that your lucky winner will be able to use said app on. When there’s something at stake, people are interested.
Those are a just a handful of ideas to help you on your next trade show journey. If it got your creative juices flowing, think of some more and write them down. Overall, this experience should leave a positive impression of you and your company on everyone you meet. Now go forth, and good luck!
Chris Ford enjoys mountain biking, deep dish pizza, and carnival dunk tanks. He writes for Basler Co., Inc. makers of custom Post-It products.