Having a well-orchestrated pre-show promotion will vastly increase your number of qualified leads and result in a successful show.
Research shows 76% of visitors at an exhibition arrive with a fixed agenda. Meaning they have planned their visit, who they want to visit and what they want to accomplish at the event.
Chances are, if they don’t know you’re exhibiting, they won’t find you – especially during a large show. So, here are few effective methods you can use to promote your presence at an exhibition or trade show to get on your visitors agenda…
Promotional Tools You Can Use
To promote and raise awareness of your attendance at the exhibition, there’s a variety of tools that you can use and should already be using.
Try not to stick to one method but instead use a combination tools to maximise your reach and generate more interest and attention.
Here are a few examples…
- Direct mail
- Email marketing
- Social media activities
- Website marketing
- PR opportunities
A great starting point for your promotional plan would be to utilise exhibition show guides, catalogues, and preview guides. They all carry news and information about the companies that are attending – the majority do not charge for these services so it’s a good way to get your name out there in advance for free.
Invite both your current and potential prospects to the show. These are the people who are already interested in doing business with you, so inviting them to visit your stand and seeing you in your best light, may be the final nudge they need to encourage them do business with you.
If you want your highest valued prospects to feel super important, you could send them VIP tickets: and let them know seating and refreshments will be available. This kind of attention to detail is sure to impress even the most difficult of visitors.
Many of your invitees will already be interested in your service/product but may not necessarily be ready to buy. So, why not include a discount voucher valid for the next four/six months to encourage them to come back in the future.
Adverts can be costly, so to minimise the spend why not dovetail any previews or features that the organisers may already be running. Be creative with it, include flashes or banners across the advertisement with relevant and useful information – e.g. ‘See us at stand 66’.
Work with the Organisers
As soon as you’ve committed to the show, get in touch with the organisers. There are many publicity opportunities that working with them can bring so seize the moment.
To promote the show organisers will sometimes make fun video reels and other promotional content. Make a point of being involved in any similar activities to generate a buzz.
Make Contact With The Press
Do the organisers use a PR agency? If they do, then great! Use their services and pick their professional brains to your advantage.
Get a press list of contacts and deadlines that you can use to promote your attendance. If you have a company newsletter, send mail and e-shots to key existing clients as well as a potential and past customers.
If you already have an email signature with the information about who you are and what business you’re in, update it to include information about the event. Some organisers will provide you with a custom e-signature, but if not you can always create your own.
It’s an opportunity to spread awareness to prospective customers and encourage them to attend the event and another way to boost traffic.
Use the Internet
The internet is a powerful and well known tool, keep your website and social media accounts updated. Create landing pages with relevant information letting people know why they should come and see you and how they can find you at the event.
Be sure to include a hyperlink to the event’s website and have the organisers do the same vise versa.
With pre-booked appointments you can predict traffic and busy periods. Of course not all appointments will be adhered too but at least you will have some guaranteed traffic to your stand, which is better than no traffic at all.
Be the reason prospects attend an exhibition …
If you’re looking to move your business in the right direction you will only benefit from attending an exhibition. With the right amount of promotion before the event, you leave yourself open to many opportunities of meeting the right people and generating valuable business relationships. Use your resources efficiently and work with the organisers and you will automatically give yourself a huge advantage.
Now that you know how to promote your attendance at the event, the next step is training the staff that will be manning your stand and generating those all important leads. For that, you will find everything you need on our previous blog post People Skills – A Guide For Your Exhibition Staff.