What are your tradeshow marketing goals? It may seem an obvious question. But it bears some attention before schlepping off to the show, setting up and accosting attendees.
Each show is different with a unique audience and a unique set of competitors. How you determine your goals depends on those combinations. Some shows may be better at connecting you with retailers, some better at interacting with buyers, others better at connecting with bigwigs who can make big things happen.
In general, the tradeshow marketing goals can fall under three main areas:
Brand Awareness and Perception
In this area, you can build on your company’s marketplace awareness with an effectively branded booth that shows off your credentials or capabilities. You can promote specific products, launch new products, position your company effectively against competitors, or even reach new markets.
Floor Activity Goals
This is where you can work to increase traffic, have one of your managers speak at a conference or panel, speak with industry media outlets, compile information about your competitors, interact with attendees, promote your message, give demos or hand out samples, work to build traffic through promotions and social media engagement and more.
Things to Measure
I’ve always advocated that exhibitors count visitors. It’s not always easy on the crazy chaos of a tradeshow floor, but if you can keep count you’ll know the number of visitors you had. Use that as a baseline and count the visitors at each show and compare year-to-year. You’ll also count leads and sales that result from those leads. Do a little market research by taking a survey or visitors and compile the results. Keep count of any new distributors, suppliers, retail buyers and more.
Knowing your tradeshow marketing goals gives you focus, especially since those goals change from show to show, from audience to audience.