This is number 9 in a series. Check the previous articles here:
- Where to Start
- Pre-Show Preparation
- Which Shows to Attend
- The Booth
- Booth Staff
- Lead Generation
- Post-Show Follow Up
What records should you keep from your tradeshow appearances?
Short answer: EVERYTHING.
And since you can store records digitally, anyone can access them from anywhere at anytime its necessary.
This means photos, videos, booth layouts, drayage and set-up/dismantle orders, staff debriefing, visitor comments, lead generation – really, all of it should be captured and kept in an obvious place. Maybe you create a 3-ring binder for every show that sits on your shelf. Maybe it’s a folder in a cloud that is easily accessible to every one that matters in your tradeshow marketing world.
Here’s the thing: if you keep it all, you’ll be surprised at how those bits and pieces will come in handy at some point in the future. Some sales person will come to you in six months and will ask if you know what that guy from Company B was interested in when he visited the booth. If you kept a copy of that lead sheet, you can pull it out (because he lost his copy) you are now a hero.
If the marketing team comes to you and says “by the way, do you know what graphics we used at the show in January?” you can pull out a photo and show them exactly what the booth looked like and what products were on display.
If the tradeshow booth management assistant asks to see last year’s electrical grid, you can pull it out in a few seconds.
While a lot of companies keep much of that information, the challenge is often trying to put their hands on it in short order. But if you create an easy system, by dating and labeling everything in a specific folder, such as “2104 Expo West” and then sub-folders with photos, videos, booth layouts, set-up and dismantle invoices, etc., it becomes ten times easier the next time around to manage the process.
So your challenge is this: archive EVERYTHING and ORGANIZE it in such a way that you and your team can access it easily.
You do that, and you’ll be ahead of virtually all of your competitors.