Ok, so we’ve all been there. Standing behind a booth all day long at a trade show. It can be a long day right? Yes, but it can also be a great way to increase your company’s visibility and grow your client base. I recently worked with a client to put together a great trade show, so while it’s fresh in my mind I wanted to share. Here are some ideas to make your next trade show a success…
1. Don’t Stand Behind the Table
Most trade shows provide exhibitors with a table and two chairs. The table goes across the front of the booth and the exhibitor stands or sits behind it and the guest stands in front. That table creates a barrier between you that is both physical and psychological. Remove the table and place it along the side of your booth. Remove the barrier that stands between you and future clients. If you can stand next to them and look them in the eye you can develop trust, rapport and credibility.
2. Grab their Attention
Grab the attention of people walking through the trade show with a great sign! People are often nervous to stop and talk to a stranger. They may be uncomfortable or it may be that they just don’t want to be sold. However, if you have great signage they might just stop and chat. If your sign is big enough, use it to outline a few key selling points so that people know what you do. This will help target people who are interested in your product or service and start conversations.
3. Have Great Materials
Your materials are the first impression a new prospect has of you and your company. Be sure it’s a good one! Have professionally done materials such as brochures, one sheets, folders, etc. Brochures can sometimes be expensive to produce so save those for people who could be good prospects. For the rest of the folks, pass out less expensive one sheets that provides pertinent information about your company. Make sure to include information on how to reach you such as an address, telephone number, website, email, etc.
4. Have a Giveaway
People love free stuff!! I used to work at a radio station and I was always amazed at the number of people who would come to our events looking for free things. Give the people what they want!! Have ad speciality items available to pass out that have your company name and contact information on them. Find items that will be useful to your potential prospects if possible. These items give you a reason to start a conversation with people passing by. You never know what could happen when you offer someone a free pen!!
5. Have a Drawing
Invite people to drop their business card into a bowl in order to win a prize. It doesn’t have to be big. A gift card to a restaurant or tickets to a show are great incentives for people. Once you collect these cards you can start a data base that you can use to keep in touch with people after the show. You might even want to send a follow-up letter a few days later thanking them for stopping by your booth.