Best tradeshow marketing tips and case studies. Call 800-654-6946.
Best tradeshow marketing tips and case studies. Call 800-654-6946.

Guest Post

6 Tradeshow Marketing Trends to Keep an Eye Out For

This guest article on tradeshow marketing trends is courtesy of Sam Holzman of ZoomInfo.

Despite our increasingly digital world, in-person events such as tradeshows and professional events continue to rise in popularity. And, for good reason: 31% of marketers believe that events are the single most effective marketing channel, over digital advertising, content marketing and email marketing (source).

Tradeshows provide the unique opportunity for face-to-face interaction and can help marketers forge long-lasting relationships with customers and prospects. But, like any marketing tactic, tradeshow marketing is constantly evolving. And, event marketers continue to find new ways to deliver fresh and unique tradeshow experiences.

To maximize your tradeshow potential, it’s important to keep up with modern event marketing trends. For this reason, today’s blog post looks at some of the top tradeshow marketing trends in 2018. Let’s get into it!

1. Artificial intelligence.

Machine learning and artificial intelligence have become more prevalent throughout all marketing tactic– including tradeshows. AI refers to technology that can rapidly process large amounts of data and subsequently “learn” and make adjustments based on this data. AI can aid your tradeshow efforts in more ways than one. Here are a few examples:

  • Lead collection: AI can capture important information from attendees as they arrive at your tradeshow booth. AI fueled technology can help you organize and score tradeshow leads instantly so you don’t have to play catch-up after the event.
  • Personalized interaction: AI can rapidly process and analyze information so you can tailor your conversations with attendees to fit their needs. With instant insights about an attendee’s industry, company size, and more, you’ll be able to have more personalized, targeted interactions.
  • Generate buzz: AI won’t just help increase your efficiency at tradeshow – it will also gain the attention of attendees. When attendees see new and exciting technology, they are more likely to stop by and check out what you have to offer.

2. Creative booth designs.

More and more marketers have grown tired of traditional booth designs, and for good reason. In a crowded event hall filled with competing companies, it’s difficult to stand out with your tradeshow display– especially if your booth is indistinguishable from those on either side of it.

Fortunately, plenty of businesses have begun to think outside the box and build unique tradeshow booths. “Un-booths” is a term that’s gaining steam in 2018, as it refers to tradeshow booths that feature unconventional and interesting designs. For example, some marketers craft their booth as more of a “hangout”, complete with comfortable seating for attendees.

Remember, your booth doesn’t have to be over the top or expensive to stand out. It just needs to be creative and different.

3. Mobile event apps.

In recent years, event-specific mobile apps have become commonplace at most tradeshows and conferences. In fact, last year 86% of event planners said they would create a mobile app for their event (source)– and we only expect that number to rise.

A mobile app can dramatically improve attendee experience by providing an event guide, allowing them to schedule meetings, and offering polls and surveys to get their feedback in real-time.

If you’re still relying on business card collection and physical handouts to connect with potential buyers—you’re living in the past. Research the different mobile applications that can help you be more efficient and organized at each of your tradeshows.

4. Virtual reality.

It’s no secret that virtual reality is one of the fastest-growing trends in marketing. Virtual reality provides an immersive, multi-sensory experience through which attendees can observe your products or presentations. VR can combine visuals, sound and other elements to captivate your booth visitors and take them out of the event and into the world of your products and services.

While VR may seem like a complex technology, it has become more accessible over recent years and will continue to be a staple at tradeshows in 2018 and beyond.

5. Social media engagement.

In the past, marketers used social media to post updates about their booths for their followers who aren’t in attendance. Now, there are a ton of creative ways you can leverage social media engagement to improve the experience for both attendees and your audience at home.

One example is branded Snapchat filters, which attendees can use to take fun photographs and share them on their own accounts. And, live video streaming on Facebook and Instagram can bring followers to your event even if they are unable to attend in person.

6. Cohesive campaign themes.

Your tradeshow booth is an extension of your brand – so it’s important to tie the theme of your booth to your overall marketing strategy. More companies are creating unique themes that align with their other marketing campaigns. When you offer one cohesive message to your attendees across all channels – including tradeshows – you will strengthen your brand and offer a more cohesive experience both at the event and in your other marketing initiatives.

Key Takeaways

And there you have it, six of the biggest tradeshow marketing trends in 2018. If you have already implemented some of these strategies, you’ve likely seen firsthand how effective they can be at improving your tradeshow performance. If not, we hope this list has provided you with some ideas to take your next tradeshow to the next level!


About the Author: Sam Holzman is the Content Marketing Specialist at ZoomInfo where he writes for their B2B blog. ZoomInfo is a leading business information database that helps organizations accelerate growth and profitability. Sam regularly covers topics related to sales, marketing, and recruiting, and likes to write about sports and travel in his free time.

6 Tradeshow Essentials For Luxury Ecommerce Brands

This is a guest post by Patrick Foster, ecommerce entrepreneur & coach: “tradeshow essentials for luxury ecommerce brands.”


tradeshow essentials for luxury ecommerce brands

Get ready to impress — it’s time to meet your discerning customer face-to-face. For a luxury ecommerce brand, attending a tradeshow provides a great opportunity to make some sales and do some important market research. Not only will it give you the chance to meet customers face to face and promote your products in a completely different way, but you will also be able to see what the competition are doing. As all luxury brands know, staying ahead of your competitors is essential when it comes to standing out in a lucrative marketplace…

Here are six essentials to help you make the most of your next tradeshow in the luxury ecommerce market!

1.    Decide on your strategy

Having a solid strategy in place is essential for success at tradeshows:  from who needs to attend, to how you’re going to market your stand and generate leads post-show — everything needs to be mapped out well in advance. If not, you run the risk of wasting valuable marketing budget on a poorly executed show. It’s also a good idea to marry your offline/online marketing and create a tradeshow landing page (or at least blog and post about it in advance).

There are hundreds of tradeshows out there for ecommerce brands to attend – so it’s really important that you do your research and choose to attend the ones that best fit your overall brand strategy. It’s a bad idea to stress your business out by attending too many, or only going to the ‘safe shows’ where you stand to learn nothing new.

In the same way that you would review any other platform before deciding to promote your ecommerce business there, the tradeshow you choose to attend needs to fit your goals and objectives. Speak to previous attendees and delegates and spend time quizzing the sales team before you sign up.

2.   Plan an engaging & aesthetic stand

In the luxury market, your aesthetic says it all. Generally more understated and elegant in tone, luxury brands need to convey their heightened sense of self with a cohesive and ultimately beautiful stand. Color schemes and decorative flourishes need to highlight the more exclusive nature of what you’re offering. Look at fashion show centerpieces for inspiration.

This also means ensuring that your branding is 100% professional, and that you have a good amount of high-quality literature available for attendees to take away with them. For a luxury brand, you will want smaller print runs of high quality tokens and mementos, rather than a load of flimsy flyers. Samples and token boxes are good thing to give away to potential prospects or partners.

You also need to make sure that you have enough staff available to deal with enquiries, and that they also represent your company well by appearing smart and professional. Get your best people on the ground, including some people from sales and customer support who have firsthand product knowledge.

3.   Showcase your products effectively

It’s important to take a selection of products with you to display on your stand. And ensure they are showcased and displayed in the most attractive way possible, constantly patrolling the stand to ensure that the first reaction is ‘wow’. For a luxury brand, more is probably less — so only take your big sellers with you.

You need to make sure that your tradeshow offering mirrors the images that customers (or potential customers) have seen on your website. For luxury products especially, it’s essential that they are presented in a way that reflects their superior quality – you need to make them stand out and look desirable. Think of it like dressing a set before taking a perfect photo.

4.   Know your stock levels & capacity

If you’re going to actively take customer orders on your tradeshow stand, then you need to make sure that you know your stock levels or delivery capacity well in advance – just as you would monitor them when selling on your online store. Otherwise you run the risk of overselling, disappointing prospective customers and damaging your reputation as a result when you can’t fulfil orders fast enough. Luckily, most online store systems have built-in dashboards and inventory management systems to help you keep on top of everything when you’re on the go.

5.   Make sure you capture data

Attending a tradeshow means one thing in particular – the opportunity to meet lots of prospective customers and business partners. In order to maximize this opportunity, you’ll need to capture the email addresses of visitors to your stand in order to build a specific mailing list for your email database. Offering incentives such as discount codes or other offers can encourage attendees to give you their details.

In order to mirror the seamless online experience that customers have when shopping online, why not capture this data via a tablet? The visitor can even enter their details themselves and the data can then be imported into a database straight away – a win-win situation!

As people spend more and more time attending tradeshows, they can become more reluctant to part with personal data. That’s fine — you don’t want unengaged people clogging up your email list anyways. Don’t get too obsessed with capturing data — it could harm your brand reputation.

6.   Make sure you follow up on leads after the show

After going to all that hard work you need to ensure you follow up to qualify any potential leads. This means sending an email to customers to thank them for visiting your stand, or sending over other content that’s specific and timely. If you receive any queries back, it’s also important that you respond to these as soon as possible to ensure that you come across as a brand that gives good customer service – something that’s so important for anyone breaking into the luxury market.

Create some awesome content about the show and what you’ve learned in order to make the most of the event. Use the event as marketing collateral over the coming weeks and months.

When it comes to attending tradeshows, the most important thing to remember as a luxury ecommerce business is that your in-person offering mirrors your online offering. The two should be seamless in terms of presentation, offering, and service, in order to attract customers or attendees and drive sales as a result.


Patrick Foster, ecommerce entrepreneur & coach.

I’m Patrick Foster and I write about ecommerce and digital   technology trends. I’m passionate about helping ecommerce merchants reach their audiences online. You can find my blogs, articles and resources across a variety of entrepreneurial websites aimed at digital growth.

How Fabric Graphics Changed the Tradeshow World [Webinar Replay]

In our webinar How Fabric Graphics Changed the Tradeshow World, Dave Brown of Optima Graphics and I discussed myriad topics regarding tradeshow graphics. We looked at new trends in materials, print capabilities and color. We went over advancements in UV printing, Latex printing and fabric printing. We talked about Tac Tac graphics, a unique one-time use graphic that can really dress up a wall, booth, elevator door or whatever. We ended with a number of questions that tradeshow marketing managers can equip themselves with when discussing new graphic options with their exhibit house.

It’s less than 30 minutes! Take a look:


Sign up for the next webinar at TradeshowGuy Webinars.com

6 Productivity Hacks for Trade Show Exhibitors

This is a guest article by Blair Pettrey of MeetingPlay.

1.) Do One Task at a Time!

You have heard of multitasking, but have you heard of solo-tasking? Instead of trying to accomplish multiple items at once, put your full focus and attention into accomplishing one task at a time. Research shows that solo-tasking can not only result in better task efficiency and results, it can also help you get more done! (Bonus, it can even make you happier!)

2.) Prepare in Advance

Odds are, you have an annual calendar in your office, showing all of your trade shows for the year. But do you have an individual calendar for every single trade show? Having an annual calendar for each of your trade shows – with what exactly needs to be done and by what date, helps keep you on track. An easy (and economical way to do this?
Use Google calendar – set up each trade show to be a specific color- and set up every single task that you need to do for each trade show, by when, with reminders and alerts (which can also be set up in Google calendar!)

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3.) Remove the Distractions

We fail to realize how easily distracted we are – until it is too late. Whether it’s the frequent notifications buzzing from your phone, the email notices showing up on your monitor, or the latest news update blaring through your television. Turn off the interruptions and focus on the task (that solo task!) at hand. You will be far more efficient– and accomplish more by being able to give your full attention.

4.) Track Your Time

If you know you only have 30 minutes to type up your next proposal, or only 15 minutes to send out an email to a potential sponsor for your trade show, commit to that amount of time and get the endeavor done. A great “pressure” is to know if your laptop only has 30 minutes of battery left, it is a perfect time to pump out that 30 minute task

5.) Utilize Chrome Extensions

If you know that you are easily distracted with growing vegetables on Farmville, or by browsing your favorite fashionista dog page on Facebook – Google Chrome (and Firefox) have multiple extensions you can install to restrict the amount of time you can spend on pages you pre-define.
Our favorite? StayFocused (for Google Chrome).

6.) Consider Outsourcing

Whether you choose Upwork or Elance or Fiverr there are several websites that have professionals who can do exactly what you are in need of – whether it is producing a video, publishing a blog post, or delivering an automated report – these freelance professionals can do it all. Just make sure you are employing someone whose first language is yours. Even though your primary language may cost a bit more – the peace of mind of knowing someone says (for example) “Trade Show Booth Design” vs. “Trade Show Designs Booths” is worth the price difference, all while still saving you critical time, at a small fraction of the cost of your worth.

Conclusion:

By implementing these tips and suggestions trade show professionals can maximize their time, accomplish more tasks, and open up time and opportunity for further success!


Author: Blair Pettrey is the Senior Marketing Manager at MeetingPlay – a mobile event app. With over 10 years of experience in all areas of online marketing, she is committed to ‘paying it forward’ for trade show and event professionals through resourceful marketing tips and content.

10 Event Planning Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

This is a guest post by Miriam Couturie

Event planning is no easy task, but it’s a vital part of marketers’ jobs. Companies spend about 20 percent of their budgets on marketing for events. Plus, 67 percent of business-to-business marketers find marketing at events as one of the most effective ways to meet future clients and customers. This is your opportunity to shine as a brand at the exact moment customers are most open to new relationships and budget allocation for upcoming initiatives. Don’t let that opportunity slip away by making these easily avoidable mistakes.

Mistake #1 Being Invisible

Blending into the background is never a good idea. The whole point of attending events is to advertise, so standing out is a must. With so many others at your events, get creative to draw some attention to your booth. Don’t just show up with a white tent. Make sure to invest in one that has your logo. You can also consider adding giveaways or games to your booth to make it more interesting. Even a little music can go a long way. Finally, make sure to bring business cards so that it’s easy to swap contact information and follow through on next steps.

Mistake #2 Sending the Wrong People

Your staff represents you and your company so send team members who really know what they’re talking about, and that you would feel comfortable speaking to your best clients. If you send people who can’t speak to your brand or products, your company may appear incompetent and could hurt your image.

Mistake #3 Poor Location

It’s your job to select the perfect spot for your event. Locations depend on the nature of the gathering — you probably wouldn’t choose a small, quiet cafe for a big tech conference. The easiest way to avoid this? Aim for high-traffic areas. Put your booth near anything that could end up with a long line. You can feed off the success of free booze bars, or big swag giveaways, and infiltrate those lines to strike up conversations with everyone.

Mistake #4 Difficult Booth Setup

There’s nothing worse than having to rush through setting up a complicated booth. The simplest solution is to look into easy-up tents. Custom outdoor event tents, or even custom canopy tents for indoors, are a great answer. Not only will this take some stress out of the event, but you’ll have greater visibility with custom printed graphics.

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Mistake #5 Ignoring Social Media

Social media has become vital: Eighty-four percent of event organizers promote their events on Facebook, and 61 percent use Twitter. Don’t think that because you’re attending in person, you can bypass social media. Instead, design a custom hashtag and encourage booth visitors to use it. Many events promote their own hashtags that can help advertise your tent and company. Posting photos of your booth/tent and posing for photos with other social media active attendees will give you a deeper reach into the community, so don’t be shy. Be the life of the party online and off.

Mistake #6 Underestimating Costs

Events are expensive, and not allowing wiggle room in your budget is a vital mistake. Maybe there’s an entry fee you didn’t know about, or one of your props breaks and needs replacing. Fact is, you can always have to expect the unexpected so be prepared to spend more than you planned. Plus, with event costs increasing by between 2.5 and 5 percent each year, this year’s booth will likely cost a little more than last year’s.

Mistake #7 Not Making Your Website Mobile-Friendly

Because 44 percent of attendees use their phones at events, it’s vital to have a mobile-friendly website. That means moving away from tiny font and photos, aiming for data that is visible, and clickable, on a Smartphone. Chances are that your booth visitors will be looking at your website to view your product line, but if your website is not mobile- friendly, you could end up losing out on sales. This is a risk, you do not want to take and must avoid at all cost.

Mistake #8 Leaving the Booth Unattended

You went through all the trouble of signing up, paying for, travelling to, setting up, and planning your day around manning the booth …. Why are you wandering around and abandoning your booth? What if you walked into Starbucks and no one was behind the counter? What if you went into Best Buy and there were no nerds in blue shirts around to help you find the giant TV you probably don’t need? Event booths are useless without you at the help.

Mistake #9 Paying Full Registration Price

Event registrations take up a big chunk of cash. But because nearly 65 percent of event planners believe early-bird discounts are a great way to promote events, by thinking ahead you can find discounted prices, leaving extra room in your budget for an outstanding booth.

Mistake #10 Forget to Follow-Through

Attending the event is only the beginning of a marketer’s work. After meeting potential customers or clients at an event, it is vital to gather their contact information. Business cards are ideal — hand out your own, too. Follow up within a week after the event, so you and your company are still fresh in their minds.

Conclusion

By avoiding these mistakes, your event is sure to go off without a hitch. Taking these steps can help you stand out in a large crowd of other businesses and attract more attention and new clients and customers. Avoiding these common mistakes can do wonders for your company.


Author: Miriam Couturie is the Marketing Manager at Ins’Tent Industries. She is responsible for managing the marketing department along with all tradeshows and exhibitions. She enjoys sharing her knowledge and expertise through educational content and blog posts

Ultimate Guide to Tradeshow Booth Staff Training

The following is a guest post by Tifany Scifo of Reveal Marketing Group.

Trade shows provide the perfect forum to expand your business – whether you run a multi-million dollar enterprise or a humble family business, a successful trade show can be a veritable boon to your company’s bottom line. Unfortunately, the opposite is equally true – a disastrous showing can not only give potential investors and clients the wrong idea about your company, it can have a lasting negative impact on your firm’s reputation and cling to your company like a stubborn, fetid odor.

With so much on the line, it only makes sense that you exercise due diligence and prepare your contingent of representatives before you even leave for the convention; to make absolutely certain everyone is ready to bring their “A” game – and ready to “wow” anyone who happens to saunter up to your booth.

Trade Shows: An Eye Witness Account

Last year while writing for the automotive industry, I was fortunate enough to be assigned to cover the SEMA (Specialty Equipment Market Association) event in Las Vegas. For those unfamiliar with this particular event, it is the biggest automotive event of the year – filling the expansive Las Vegas Convention Center with thousands of custom vehicles and aftermarket vendors as far as the eye can see. Big or small, each vendor had the same goal – to develop a list of qualified leads that could then be turned into a mutually beneficial business relationship.

As I walked from hall to hall, it became startlingly clear which companies were making the most out of the opportunity. Surprisingly, it wasn’t the companies with the flashiest digital displays or the ones that employed a gaggle of vapid booth babes armed with coy smiles. As I listened in on the interaction between vendor and potential client, it occurred to me that the ones that would emerge victoriously from SEMA were the ones that came prepared – lock, stock and barrel.

How to Get Your Staff Ready for “The Show”

Whether it’s your first show or tenth, there’s always an opportunity to tweak your approach to trade shows. Remember that if a strategy worked one year, it may not the next, so be sure to revisit your plan of attack and set reasonable goals. As for the staff that will be accompanying you, there are a few things they should know:

The Marketing Strategy. It’s important your staff knows exactly what is expected of them in terms of sales goals, but be sure to take the time to expand a little further on the topic of “goals”. Give your staff some idea of the impact a successful trade show can have on the company, and take the time convey to them any key messages you’d like potential clients to walk away with.

Your Products. Regardless as to whether or not you’ve decided to feature a single product or an entire product line, you need to invest some time reviewing them with your staff. Remind them that they will be the point of contact for a lot of new potential clients that may be unfamiliar with your company, and their product knowledge must be on

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point. Take a features and benefits approach.

Sales Floor Selling. If your staff is used to engaging clients one on one (or on the phone), remind them that selling at a trade show is a very different beast. Instruct them that they will likely be vying for a client’s attention (quite possibly within eye or earshot of a direct competitor) and that things like professional attitude, positive body language, and eye contact are all valuable tools in engaging a client. Also, take a few minutes to review some of the questions they are likely to encounter while speaking to potential leads, and ways they can answer them earnestly and intelligently.

The Layout. While this point could certainly mean, “be sure your staff knows where the washrooms are located”, in this instance it means “know the layout of the booth”. Be sure that before the doors open that each member of your team knows where the overstock promotional items, company literature, and anything else they may need to close a sale are kept. There is nothing quite like a confused and disorganized staffer to chase away a sale.

Additionally, it would be good for your staff to know where the center’s private meeting rooms are located, should the need arise to take a client somewhere quiet to seal the deal.

Consider Hiring a Trade Show Coach

If you’re not exactly enthused at the idea of having to get your staff ready for the show, or if you simply don’t have the time, you can certainly benefit from hiring a coach. Professional trade show coaches like Susan Friedmann have carved out a niche for themselves helping companies get the most out of trade shows.

Coaches have seen what works and more importantly, what doesn’t – and have a commendable grasp on what needs to be done prior to, during, and after a show to ensure that your trade show is as profitable as it can be.


Tifany Scifo is the Creative Marketing Manager at Reveal Marketing Group Inc. She specializes in Web Design & Development, Creative Design & Direction and Tradeshows. She enjoys sharing her thoughts through blogging and social media.


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Tricks of the Tradeshow: Get the Conversation Started

smiling woman greeting

This is a guest post by Ruthie Abraham of The Brand Builders.

Regardless of whether you’ve worked at dozens of trade shows around the country or whether you’re headed to your first show, coming up with a compelling way to get people to stop and see what you have to offer is always one of the greatest challenges at a show. A standard greeting normally isn’t enough to engage someone, so you need to develop a catchy opener.. Pre-plan your opener. It can be catchy, intriguing, flattering, startling, weird, clever or some combination of these, but we recommend having a few on hand and testing your pre-planned lines to see how initial attendees react. If you get a good response on one, you can continue to use it for the rest of the show and at your next exhibition.
Here, we break down 10 ways to get the conversation started in a compelling way and connect with a quality lead:

  1. Be upfront. Give me two minutes of your time to find out about how you can ___.
  2. Lead them. What is your department doing to lower your total cost of _____.
  3. Establish common ground. What do you think of our show so far?
  4. Take an indirect approach. Can I ask your opinion on something? 
  5. Get physical with a hands-on demonstration of product. Help me out with this!
  6. Show you care about client needs by asking them what problems they face. Which part of our service or product is most relevant to your needs?
  7. Draw them in with an offer, challenge or contest. Have you entered our raffle to win a free _____?
  8. Be presumptive. I see you looking at our services. Are there any features you have questions on that I can explain to you?
  9. Ask them to think about an industry problem (that your product solves). Hey! Do you know the statistic of _____?
  10. Make it open-ended. How are you familiar with our product or services?

Ruthie Abraham is the founder & President of The Brand Builders – a B2B marketing agency focused on helping companies drive results, return and revenue from their online marketing.  Their B2B Marketing Blog is a resource for executives and professionals to learn about lead generation, content marketing, strategic sales, social media, trade show marketing and more.

Six Tips To Create A Top Custom Modular Exhibition Stand

The following is a guest post by Reno Macri.

A custom modular exhibition stand is an option to make the most of your investment, providing the chance to not only adapt and modify your stand for a program of shows, but also to re-use components from your stand in other events in between exhibitions. Modular design provides a uniquely adaptable framework for your exhibition, and can have greatly reduced shipping costs. The unique custom elements can provide high impact branding, whereas the durability of materials and efficient storage ensures your exhibition stand will look amazing every time you use it.

Create a Sense of Intrigue

Virgin media Exhibition stand design


Some of the best custom modular exhibition stands’ success lies in their creation of a sense of mystery that helps convert passive passers-by into active potential customers.  Intrigue is one of the most powerfully effective ways of increasing interest in your brand, and a custom exhibition stand is a perfect canvas upon which to create it.  Carefully plan what you want to achieve with your design, and ensure that the pay-off to potential customers hooked by the sense of intrigue created by your exhibition stand is worth their time and is relevant to your brand identity. 

The Bigger the Better?

Vodafone Custom Stand Design

When choosing the size of modular exhibition stands, a larger space will obviously create more of a visual appeal to potential customers.  If space permits, a large exhibition stand accurately portraying your brand identity, with a range of interactive technological aspects and friendly, knowledgeable personnel will combine to create the perfect exhibition.

Memorable Live Presentations

Philips Custom Stand

A lot of research has indicated that exhibits that provide interactive live presentations are amongst the most memorable to consumers.  The opportunity to be equally entertained and engaged in a presentation presents an opportunity to be far more active in the event, and will also set you aside from your competition.  Any exhibition is about standing out, and not simply blending in with the number of other stands there.  It is things like live presentations and demonstrations that will help you achieve this, particularly with the flexibility provided with a custom modular exhibition stand, which will allow you to incorporate all of your design features. 

The Power of Touch

Vodafone Custom Stand Design

Interactive digital technology has emerged as one of the most successful aspects of any exhibition stand in the last ten years.  From the early days of simply having a computer present on which you could register your interest through social media sites, to the fully-immersive world of countless iPads and interactivity that continues to grow in popularity with the public.  Again, it is all about ensuring your potential customers aren’t simply passive in their experience of your brand: integrate them into the experience, make them a part of it and let them feel what you product or service is all about.

The Power of Smell

Aviva Custom Design Build

Of all five senses, it is the power of smell that is the strongest in triggering memories or an association.  Some aromas remind you of specific holiday destinations, of childhood memories, and can instantly transport you to another time and place within your mind.  Drastically under-used in exhibition design, the power of smell as a memory trigger has the potential to be incredibly powerful with creating brand association through your exhibit.

The Power of Sound

Philips Exhibition Stand

Although you will need to research what regulations exist with the exhibition space, a good use of sound can be the perfect way to attract visitors to your stand.  Music, or a presentation will help draw attention to your stand for those who cannot immediately see it.

Reno Macri is a managing director of Enigma Visual Solutions, a leading exhibition design company in Berkshire, UK. It specializes in providing exhibition services like custom stands design and build, signage system, conference set design, event branding, graphic productions and much more. He has been working in exhibition & the event industry for more than 2 decades. He enjoys sharing his thoughts on experiential marketing and design trends. You can follow him on twitter.

Generate Buzz By Getting Social For Your Next Tradeshow

This is a guest post by Matthew Brennan.

Tradeshows can wield a terrific impact for businesses. The effect of waves of people coming to your tradeshow booth to find out more about what you do – and buying from you – can be great for the bottom line.

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The thing is that trade shows can be crowded, and you need to work hard to set yourself apart from the competition. That can be accomplished in person with great banners, marketing materials, and branding. But there are things that you can also do with social media to generate a buzz that will keep people talking for a long time.

Use Twitter Hashtags to communicate – Twitter hashtags are a great way to make sure that the conversation keeps going. If people have a question after they leave your tradeshow booth, or simply want to talk about what they saw, they can leave a tweet with the tradeshow hashtag. That way they can be sure that the right people see what they’re talking about.

Hashtags are simply the pound sign immediately before a word on a tweet. It makes them searchable in Twitter, so anyone attending the show, or looking to find out more information, can find it.

Use giveaways – Are you giving some promotional products away at your Nimlok tradeshow booth? You can use these items to spark a little interest online. Mentioning them on your Facebook page or in a tweet can motivate people to make an appearance, and see what you have to offer in person.

Why not let people know that you’ll have a free _____________ to the first 100 people? If what you’re giving away is truly valuable, it may just be the incentive to get them to come earlier, creating a demand.

Preview your exhibits at the show – Do you have something great planned for your tradeshow booth? Facebook and Twitter are the perfect place to give your customers and fans a little taste of what they’ll be in for on the tradeshow floor.

What aspects of your industry or business are you highlighting? Is there something specific that you’re looking to promote? This is the place to expand your reach and get in front of people. Letting people know what they can expect ahead of time can increase the crowd.

Use QR Codes – Your marketing doesn’t have to be strictly from the online world to the trade show floor. You can use your tradeshow presence to drive people back to your website and social platforms and create more long term relationships. This can be achieved easily through the use of QR codes. You can put these simple codes on any of your marketing materials, and when your customers scan them, it will return them to a specific website of your choice.

You can send them to your Facebook page, if you want them to become a fan. You can send them to your blog if that’s where you’re publishing your best content. You can send them to a Pinterest page, if that’s where some of the best pictures of your work reside. The possibilities are endless. This is a great way to keep people wanting more.

Use The Same Graphics And Logo – You worked hard to come up with the perfect banners, branding and message for your offline tradeshow presence. Don’t throw that all away. Make sure that your Facebook and Twitter cover photos incorporate the same design. This will help keep a consistent look and feel between your offline business and your online presence.


About the author: Matthew Brennan is a marketing writer based in the Chicago area. He regularly writes about content marketing, blogging, and engaging with your audience. He has been published on ProBlogger, Soshable, and Business2Community. Connect with Matthew on his website, www.matthewlbrennan.com, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+

Connecting, Following, Sharing and Buying

guest post by Derek Leftridge of Optima Graphics

Console Radio Receiver

When I was younger I remember my grandparents always had the radio on in their car playing old radio shows that had big casts and sound effects and it was an experience. This caused me to have an addiction to radio.

That life long addiction to radio spilled over to a new addiction to Podcasts about two years ago. I tried a lot of them then settled on a handful that I still listen to today. I feel a connection with those individuals since I listen to them on a daily or weekly basis. And it is enjoyable and informative.

One in particular announced about 6 months ago that they were on Twitter. I began following them there. I started to get cool info and announcements I would not have anywhere else.

Then a contest was announced on there Twitter feed. You enter through a link in the post and agree to follow two other people on Twitter. Those two other people had a connection to the person I was already following so it was a type of bonus. And once you entered, a post from you on your own Twitter feed was created so you could begin sharing the contest with those following you. Then they could also register. Sadly, I did not win.

To recap I listen to multiple podcasts daily, I follow many important and funny people all the time and get access to things and people I could not otherwise. I pay nothing for this ability. That sounds great for me but a big waste of time and money for those who produce the podcasts, take time to post on Twitter and those paying for products then giving them away.

Or is it?

That particular person I mentioned above whose podcast I listen to, follow on Twitter and had a contest has written a book and it comes out in November. I will be buying that book thank you very much.

Yep. That is the sound of money changing hands. The ROI if you will. This relationship has taken a while but we have finally arrived at the serious part of all relationships – the spending of money part. Social Media / Social Networking is like building up to that first kiss; except it is not guaranteed on the third date.

This is an example, maybe small but true, of how offering valuable content and experiences over the Social Media / Social Networks, in time, can have a monetary result. However, I do believe the relationship I discussed that finally paid off took longer than it has to. You have to decide how much time you want to put into this type of marketing. That time, along with the content you provide, will determine how quickly someone starts buying from you.

Derek Leftridge has been in the Tradeshow industry, with Optima Graphics, for 17 years and Marketing Coordinator for the past 5 years.

With his experience and drive he is helping Optima enter into new avenues of Marketing. E: dcleftridge (at) optimagfx.com / P:636-680-9262

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photo credit: ellenm1

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