You’ve invested a lot of money into your trade show exhibit marketing to make sure people WANT to come visit you!
You could invest in a trade show exhibit that simply exists with all of the others, attracting people here and there who stumble across your booth. Or you could invest in the exhibit that everyone is talking about far before the show even starts, and the exhibit that catches the eyes of everyone who comes near your booth. Clearly, a full booth is exactly what you want as it leads to more leads, and helps you produce the ROI that you are aiming for.
How do you make that happen? Will all of the exhibitors have a pretty equal chance of winning over trade show attendees? Not necessarily.
There are ways that your trade show program can go above and beyond the standard expectations of a typical exhibitor. Here are 3 ways to be extremely appealing to trade show guests that will assist in filling your booth with attendees:
1. Make sure your presence is known before the show even begins.If you are not doing your best to let potential buyers know that you are attending an upcoming trade show or event, chances are they probably won’t even know you will be there – it’s as simple as that. They may assume you will be there, but assuming doesn’t put you at the top of their list to check out. Most attendees do some research before the show, but they probably won’t scroll through and memorize every single exhibitor on the list either.
Make sure your ideal audience is made aware that you’ll be attending the show and why they should be excited! Promote your upcoming show and what attendees can expect from visiting your booth on social media. Create posts for your organic audience, and even consider boosting your posts to potential trade show attendees who might not follow your page.
For the people who do know who you are, be sure to let them know about the upcoming trade show you’re exhibiting at on your website’s homepage. This may even incite interest to make them want to attend the show if they weren’t yet planning on it!
You can also send physical invitations to your buyer lists as well as any leads that you have access to. If you’re able to, also send an email to follow up. Putting your business’s name in the mind of your audience is going to get you on their radar and have them on the lookout for you at your trade show. Therefore, you need to convince them in your pre-show marketing that you’re going to be worth visiting. Create incentives for people to want to find you on the trade show floor!
2. Create an exhibit that is hard to look away from.The average attention span is about 8 seconds, meaning you only have so much time to catch the eye of anyone scanning the room or passing by your booth. Creating an eye-catching exhibit takes a lot of planning. There are many things that play a part in this:
- Size. While size does play a part, it is not going to make or break your exhibit if you are focused on the experience you provide. However, it is still obvious that a small portable display won’t be as visible as a larger inline display, and an inline display won’t cover quite as much ground as an island exhibit. Implementing hanging structures in your booth is a great way to give your exhibit a bigger presence without having to step up in size and floor space. Consider what makes the most sense to your business budget-wise and figure out if a larger booth could be in the cards for you to hold a larger presence and ultimately a larger amount of guests.
- Design. The largest house on the block isn’t necessarily the best one. Sometimes the gem on the street is the one that has had the most love put into it and was thoughtfully designed. Putting a large focus on the design and structure of your exhibit will help you attract more eyes. Create an exhibit that hones-in on your brand. Using custom components that are specialized for your business is going to put your exhibit a step above the cookie-cutter exhibits surrounding it. Backlighting your graphics can also level up your presence as the brightness can catch eyes from a distance and really make your appearance POP on the show floor!
- Location. Location is one of the most overlooked aspects of exhibiting, and there are many ways to take advantage of this once you know the importance. While many exhibitors might think that since the biggest companies will snag the spaces near the entrance of the show and everything else is pretty much on the same level from there, they’re wrong! This is such an important asset to exhibiting success that we wrote an entire blog about it!
The blog highlights ways that you can focus your efforts on getting a high foot traffic location (yes there are many more than just the entrance locations), why to gravitate toward major brand exhibitors, how you can save on your space when you book early, and why to think outside the box and do your research!
Many things tie into creating an eye-catching exhibit. Be sure to work with an exhibit company that takes your needs into consideration: making sure you’re proud of your exhibit design, helping you decide on the right size for your needs, and being there when you have questions about booth location.
3. Make your exhibit experience one that people can’t pass up.Have you ever walked by a store, kiosk, food truck, or exhibit and been so intrigued by whatever they were offering that you couldn’t turn them down? This is what you want to be for any attendee who comes into view of your exhibit.
Make them feel excited and intrigued to enter, as if they’d be missing out on something if they were to keep on walking by. People don’t want information to be spewed at them as they enter your exhibit (while there is a time and place for sharing in-depth information), attendees want to be involved in something that gives them a memorable experience.
This is possibly the most important aspect of your trade show marketing – that people are going to remember how you made them feel. “Wow” them with an in-booth demonstration, offering up contests that they can get excited about, creating games that allow them to let loose and have some fun, and offering them an amazing freebie that they’ll be excited to pull out of their bag when they get home are all things that are going to stick in the minds of your audience. Not only will this make you more memorable, but rewinding a step, it will get more people into your exhibit in the first place!
Don’t be that trade show exhibit that simply exists on the trade show floor. Be the one that people are drawn to and the one that people remember! Promoting your presence in your pre-show marketing, building a visually appealing and well-branded exhibit, and making your in-booth experience a can’t-miss opportunity will get people excited and drawn right to you!