Events Archives - Hytner

The Ultimate Guide to Pre-Exhibition Show Promotions

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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
  • Advertising
  • Sponsorship

Show Guides

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.

Invitations

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.

Run Adverts

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.

E-Signature

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.

Pre-Book Appointments

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.

What Do You Do After The Exhibition Event Is Over?

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When the event is over, evaluate and learn…

Attending an exhibition event is a great way to introduce your company to potential customers in addition to building relationships with existing clients. However, it is important to remember that your work doesn’t finish with the exhibition. Here are some of the vital steps to take after the event.

Deliver anything you have promised

While in discussions with visitors to your stand, you may offer to send them quotes, further information on your products or even samples. It is crucial that you send anything you have promised to the contacts you have met at the exhibition. This will let them know that you value their business, and also show you are a reliable company.

Follow up leads

While attending exhibition events, you will have the opportunity to gather contact information from visitors to your stand, as well as information about their requirements. Information is best gathered manually rather than using a scanning system. This is a more personal approach, and enables you to make notes and tailor questions to the prospect’s individual needs.
Categorise the leads you have gained using a system that will allow you to contact the most promising leads first. You could give them a rating from one to ten, for example, or simply put them in to three categories depending on the nature of the lead – hot, warm or cool. If you are going to categorise as you go, make sure you are discreet. You don’t want to insult any prospects.
It is vital to follow up leads within a couple of days after the event has finished. This will keep your business in the mind of your prospect, and guarantee you stay ahead of the competition. Leads can go cold very quickly, so make sure you follow up while the lead is still likely to result in a conversion.

Contact the show organiser

It may be possible to get details about visitors to the show from the organisers of the exhibition. If they are willing to give you a list of attendees, you can use this to contact people who you didn’t have a chance to speak to, or who didn’t visit your stall.

Debriefing session with staff

After the event, sit down with your team to discuss how successful they feel it has been. Assess what went well and what didn’t work. You can then use the feedback from your staff to plan future exhibition events.