As a first collaboration, we created a white paper where we highlight “The 10 Steps you need for the Ultimate Trade Show Experience”.
We describe how you can ensure that your money spent on a trade show will pay off in visibility and attention you get.
The following 10 steps we address and provide a road map to revitalizing your trade show experience.
- Location, location, location. Identify the trade shows you want to exhibit at as early as possible – often times a year in advance. This will give you the opportunity to choose the best available exhibit space and location that suits your needs.
- You need to determine what you want to say, and ultimately what kind of customer experience you’re trying to create. Are you launching a new product, service? Or are you trying to network and have as many meetings as possible with new or existing customers? This will dictate how you plan and what to emphasize in your exhibit.
- Design, look and feel. The design, flow, messaging and feel of the exhibit must resonate with your goals of launching/announcement ornetworking/in-booth meetings. If you’re launching or telling the world about something new – it needs to be the center of attention. If you’re goal is to meet with as many customers as possible your booth needs to be welcoming, and you’ll need some type of meeting area.
- Create a schedule. Identify the right number of staff to have working the booth at one time and develop a rotation. This keeps people fresh, reduces over-crowded booths, and should keep people off their phones and computers because they know they have time away from the booth to plug in.
- Create a dress code. Nothing looks cleaner than your team representing the company in matching business professional dress shirts.
- Plan and advertise a social in your booth. What better to draw foot traffic like beer, wine or food? Send an email invitation out to your contacts that you also expect to attend the trade show and hand out a post-card-like-invite to anyone walking by.
- Leverage media. Limited on exhibit space to tell your story? Develop a video that provides a company overview or highlights the reasoning you’re exhibiting. This often serves as another staff member if you get busy – a visitor can watch the video and learn something.
- Don’t over-invest in print. How many times do you print and ship heavy boxes of literature, only to hand out a dozen pieces because your customer doesn’t want to walk the hall carrying something? Pre-load your literature on to USB’s and hand them out instead.
- Engage. Organize a raffle or contest to excite your visitors to participate. This will generate more foot traffic, increase leads, and depending on what you plan, provide a call to action during the trade show.
- Promotional Item. Before you spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on pens with your logo, spend some time looking at being unique. Is there a way to tie a promotional product into the theme of your booth? If so, and it’s reasonably priced, look at doing that instead of wasting money on all the common items that every other exhibitor hands out.
Planning for the ultimate trade show experience is not rocket science but requires systematic planning and complete buy-in from your team. These ten steps provide a top level overview and highlight the components to a successful trade show. If executed effectively, you’ll ensure a customer experience that not only stands out from the rest, but most importantly is memorable.
In partnership with Geo Energy Marketing Services, ThinkGeoEnergy can help you navigate this process and provide a detailed strategy for your exhibiting success. To dive deeper into each of these 10 points – The Ultimate Tradeshow Experience White Paper GEM-TGE.