Networking events and trade shows give you a solid opportunity to meet your customers in real life – but how can you make a strong first impression? It’s not just about the size of your booth – you’ve got to up your game to really make a memorable introduction. Make unforgettable connections – follow these 5 ideas.
1) Boost visibility – find the best location
To maximize your foot traffic, make sure to research the event space a few months in advance. Where are the most popular events and speakers around your industry taking place? Can you get a spot near them? Even if it means paying a little bit more, choose a prime location. It could mean thousands of dollars in business—or more—down the road.
On the other hand, you might not have the chance to choose where your company is placed at the show. If that’s the case, you’ll need to figure out some creative ways to draw people to your booth. That’s when you bring out the ol’ conference favorite—swag. But don’t just go for candy and USBs. Instead, invest the budget on a single, big hero prize (anything from a drone camera to dinner for two). Set a competition, and use the opportunity to collect contact info from entrants to add to your leads. This will give you the opportunity to have longer conversations with potential clients. Who knows? Your company could be the talk of the show.
2) Grab attention with great design
The most important element of your display is clear branding and messaging. After all, you want people to be compelled to talk to you! Otherwise, you’re just another branded pen rattling around another company’s tote bag.
Booth design is a great way to communicate your company’s voice and design sensibilities. In other words, it’s an opportunity for brand awareness. That’s why you should invest in your booth’s appearance. If you’re going to trade shows for a few years, it’s worth getting the highest-quality materials.
3) Stock up on print
Trade shows are one of the few places where people actually take your promotional print materials. That’s why you should make your product announcements and event invitations as nice as possible. If you don’t have a designer on your team, hire a freelancer to create the product announcements and event invitations. If you want, go a step further and have a newsletter sign-up sheet so you can stay in touch with your new contacts.
Doing it all last minute? Make sure your print provider can guarantee next-day delivery so you can get high-quality materials whenever you need them. Phew!
4) Always deliver delight
People like being around others who make them smile – so why not be the company that makes conference attendees feel great?
Events are the best opportunity to demonstrate your brand voice. Hopefully, your number one priority is delighting your customers. That’s why you should staff your event with friendly company representatives and stay engaged with visitors. An attendee will remember a great interaction with one of your teammates more than anything.
5) Stay in touch – be remembered
Remember those business cards you collected for your raffle? Follow up with those leads! Otherwise, all of your hard work could go to waste. To ensure that people don’t forget your face, follow up within 48 hours. Make sure to include a personalized detail about your conversation or the event in general. This will increase the likelihood that they’ll remember you and reply. Besides, with that great location, amazing print materials, and friendly staff, how could they not?
So with these ideas in mind, go on and make your event booth one to be remembered. Frequent a lot of trade shows and events? What were some of the best event booths you’ve seen? Share in the comments below!
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