For most businesses, focus on incoming revenue is always a high priority. Your business' marketing plan, like most people’s, will no doubt include increasing your firm’s brand awareness and boosting your company image in the local community. One effective way to put yourself in front of people interested in your products and services is by exhibiting at trade events in your region.
Give trade show visitors what they want
Once you have booked your place, don’t immediately rush to print signs and hire seating. Your main goal should be to consider how to help your stand attract the right audience, and ultimately, sell your product and service.
75% of all visitors at shows and exhibition events attend to buy, or are planning to buy. Unlike many of your customers, this crowd of buyers actively wants to meet the people behind the product and service. Your visitors want to hear what you have to show and say; your job is to deliver exactly that.
Set your business exhibition goals
As a first step, decide your main aim for your attendance at the trade show. Naturally, you want to sell. We all do. But it’s so much more than that, so set your exhibition objectives using the five SMART criteria.
Firstly, ask yourself the Specifics:
- What is the aim of your company and its attendance at the event?
- Why are you exhibiting at the show?
- What do you want to get out of your attendance at the event?
For example, is your focus to grow your database of potential customers? Do you want to launch a new product? Is the show merely a marketing exercise to increase brand awareness?
Create a Measurable objective. Decide on how to quantify your aims so that you can manage your success - for example, set a target for the number of new database contacts you want to attract.
Your business exhibition objective should be Agreed within the business. Ensure the team on your exhibition stand is aware of, and agrees with, the key points. Working together towards the same objective will result in higher productivity than each individual working on many smaller objectives. The most effective objectives are sharp, focused and clear.
Your objective should be Realistic. Why not aim for the moon? Even if you miss, you’ll still land amongst the stars. Set yourself achievable objectives, but aim high. Don’t settle for a result you could get without exhibiting.
Your objective should be Timebound. Your goals should be dated, with a start and finish, so they can be managed and measured effectively.
On the day of the trade show
Finally, make your objective visible throughout the preparation and set-up of exhibiting. Stick it up on your wall; repeat it to the team as a mantra, daily… do whatever it takes. Live and breathe your goals. One never gets a second chance to make a first impression – and show-day means go-day.