B2B Marketing Blog

Tradeshow Tips

Oct 25, 2011 5:37:06 AM / by Lisa Shepherd

Getting prepared for a tradeshow can certainly be a daunting task. There is so much to remember and a lot of pressure to bring the right audience into your booth. I recently attended the Franchise show in Toronto and as I was walking along from booth to booth I noted more than a handful of companies that did not convey their service or product well enough for me either understand the business and/or interest me enough to learn more. So, I have listed a few tips to help ensure you don’t forget anything for your next tradeshow and most importantly, you do all that you can to engage your audience!

  1. Signage/booth design

When designing and developing the graphics for your signage remember to keep it simple but clear. Take a step back and ask yourself (or better yet someone else who doesn’t know your business) would a visitor understand what my offering is before starting to speak with me? Sometimes we get so caught up in the design of our booth that we have not checked if there is enough information to explain the product or service. Booth graphics are a great opportunity to clearly lay out your unique selling proposition, either through copy or images, and allow visitors to walk into your area understanding your offering and ready to start talking.

2. Promotional Materials

Finding the right promotional materials can be a bit tricky. You really want to make sure that you are providing something that is not going to be tossed in the garbage at the end of the day and/or is not the most costly expense for the show. Too many companies make the mistake of choosing the cheapest item possible just to have something to hand out. You really need to give some thought to your promotional item so that your qualified leads walk away with something that either cleverly explains your business or serves a functional purpose that the attendees can and will use.

Some tried and tested examples of good giveaways include:

a) Bags

b) Pens

c) Alarm clocks

d) Coffee mugs/drinking bottles

e) Staplers

3. Engage your Audience

Many exhibitors today are willing to raffle away a great prize just to receive a bowl full of business cards to add to their e-newsletter list. But at the end of the day are you really engaging your audience and building a database of qualified leads? Convince your visitor to first touch and feel your product, watch a video or answer a test question before being able to drop a card in that bowl. Weed out the uninterested and focus on the leads that count.

4. Roles and Responsibilities

There is nothing worse than walking into a booth and being surrounded by a bunch of people standing around with their arms folded across their chests. Be ready for your guests. If those ‘working’ the booth are not able to explain or pitch the product or service then provide them with a distinct role such as record keeper, technical assistant, etc. But regardless of what their job is, everyone needs to stay off their phones, be ready to greet people and have answers to some basic questions.

So, take a deep breath relax. Getting ready for your next tradeshow doesn’t need to be stressful, just focus on getting the right message across and the sales will follow.

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Topics: Marketing Tactics