Trade shows shouldn’t just be an item on your to-do list and a weekend of hectic travel. Making the most of a trade show can increase your business and your brand’s reach. Before your next trade show, put these three secrets to use and get the most out of your efforts.
- Match Your Purpose. Every trade show attendee is there for a purpose. Before you even sign up to exhibit, you should really think about their purpose for attending and ensure that it matches up with your purpose. Can you get what you want out of the show while providing what the attendees want?
Are you there to get new business, meet new business contacts, grow and nurture existing business relationships? Why are attendees there? To learn more about their field, to explore the services or products they know their growing business needs, to make new contacts?
- Give Them a Take Away. Every attendee is looking to take something home. Whether they’ve come for education, business development, or seeking a service, you can cater to their needs and give them exactly what they came for. This can come in many forms: advice, information, the beginning of a new business relationship.
The key is to make a personal connection while you have them in your booth and then give them a token to remember you by. Handing them a unique business card or small gift of appreciation will help keep you and your business in their mind throughout the show and as they return to business as usual.
- Follow Up. Follow up is a vital piece that many exhibitors neglect. Just because you made some contacts and gave out some gifts does not mean you had a successful trade show. You should follow up within the week of the show to let your new contacts know that you appreciated meeting them and remind them what you can do to help them succeed.
And don’t stop there. Keep communicating with them and providing the information they are seeking with educational emails, insightful Twitter posts, and other relevant social media updates.
This might be the most important one. Many and most companies take years and years to develop a strong enough follow up protocol. Time and time again our company has seen increases when we simply get more diligent about our follow ups with clients. Follow up time and time again if you want to take advantage of your customer base.