As coronavirus cases dwindle more and more, more states are opening back up and cutting back on social distancing restrictions. The CDC has released their latest suggestions for events and public gatherings, and the future looks bright for businesses interested in participating in trade events. The true key to a successful trade show is making sure that you leverage your booth to the best of your ability and reap all the benefits that trade shows have to offer.
Trade shows are designed to bring businesses, individuals, and thought leaders of the same industry together. These exhibitions are organized so that people in the industry can come together to talk and showcase products and emerging topics in their field. If you’ve decided to opt for a trade show booth, whether you’re in the tech industry or healthcare industry, there are several steps you can take to ensure you get the most out of your experience and build brand awareness. Here’s what you need to know:
Prepare the Team
No matter how many people you have manning the booth, if your team isn’t properly prepared, you could fail to leave great first impressions. First and foremost, your booth should never be empty. An empty booth could create a negative impression of your business, not to mention the opportunity you could be missing out on. Create a schedule for your team to ensure someone is covering the booth at all times.
Next, work on a “script” and talk to your team about conversation starters and pointers. Think of your product’s use cases and what you offer of value to the industry. As you put together your booth script, consider frequently asked questions. Practice talking to attendees ahead of time. Doing so ensures everyone will appear uniformly prepared and informed.
Pay Attention to Design
There are numerous design tips to consider. For instance, the last thing you want to do is oversaturate your design. Simple designs can say a lot and can eliminate distraction, particularly if someone is engaging with your business for the first time. An attendee will only spend a few seconds looking at your booth, so there’s an extremely short time span in which you have to capture them. Once they walk your way, you’ll have more time to explain what your business is about in detail.
Create an Experience
The best trade show booths are those that build experiences. Get together with your team to brainstorm different activities you can host at your booth. Keep in mind that your interactive experience should be related to your brand. For instance, virtual reality experiences are popular today. Depending on your company, you can use virtual reality to create immersive experiences that really put your prospective customers in the front seat.
Charity Water is a good example of how a company can create an experience at their booth. The nonprofit organization invited booth visitors to walk across a 50-yard platform with two 40-pound jugs of water to illustrate the struggle the citizens in undeveloped countries face.
Draw prizes and raffles are also common in the trade show industry. Allow people that stop by your booth to enter a raffle. Your prize should be something both appealing and ideally related to your company in some way.
Gather Your Giveaways
“Goodies” are synonymous with trade shows, so it’s important that you have a decent amount of giveaways. Be sure to have promotional products for your business that feature the company’s logo. These products might include pens and pencils, branded notepads, magnets, or stickers. Additionally, don’t forget business, brochures, and various informational items that you can hand out to people who want to learn more about your business later or keep in touch.
Being a people person can go a long way. Whenever someone approaches your booth, be hospitable and accommodating and ask them questions about their business, too. When you ask visitors about their own involvement in the industry, they’ll often ask the same questions in return. Take the time to get to know each person that approaches your booth and have genuine conversations to build connections.