In this blog post we will look at strategies your company can take to attract and convert new sales opportunities at your next trade show.
For many companies, trade shows and conferences are the ideal opportunity to get your product or service in front of thousands of potential clients or customers looking to make a purchase decision.
Everyone knows that sales leads and closed deals are the lifeblood of every event-related business. Every trade show and conference are the perfect opportunity to make a big splash in front of the right target audience.
Exhibiting trade shows can be a costly expense, it is important that you have the right marketing plan in place to get the best return on your investment. In this blog post, we will look at strategies you can use to attract and convert more leads at your next event.
Set clear goals and objectives
Before you start planning to exhibit at your next trade show or conference, there’s one vital step you need to take care of first. You need to solidify your event marketing goals and objectives.
Don’t make the mistake of planning to attend a trade show just because. First, ask yourself why you are attending. Instead of attending to just attend, develop a strategic marketing plans that aligns with your larger company goals and objectives.
Having clearly defined goals and objectives ensures that you get the best return on your investment. Your main goal for exhibiting at your next event should be to build relationships and generate qualified leads that convert to future sales.
Select the right trade show
When it comes to having a successful event marketing strategy that generates leads, it’s important that you select the best trade shows for your company to attend. There are so many industry conferences and trade shows that take place every year, that it can be hard to decipher which show is the right one to attend.
Make a checklist of criteria that aligns with your goals and objectives and start to research. Consider the audience that’s attending the show, the location, the date of the show, the industry segment, the size of the show, the cost to attend, how well the event is marketed, and the industry affiliation.
Also,reach out to the management team to find out as much information about the show before deciding to attend.
Remember that bigger doesn’t always mean better
Just because a conference is large in size doesn’t mean it’s the best show for your company to attend. It can be easy to get lost in the sea of booths at a large trade show making it even harder to meet new customers and generate leads.
Your companymight have a more impactful experience at a smaller regional event where you can intimately connect with your target audience.
Choose the right booth location
Research shows that the right booth location is key to maximizing ROI. A terrible location could make or break the success for your company exhibiting at an event.
Choosing the booth location should be the first priority on your list when deciding to exhibit at the show. You want to make sure your company booth doesn’t get stuck in an area with limited foot traffic where aren’t getting a return on your investment.
Utilize digital marketing tactics to promote presence at the show
It’s no secret that digital marketing is a great way to drive traffic to your booth and boost engagement. Running email marketing, display, and social media campaigns in advance of the event are effective methods to reach your target audience.
Depending on your audience these digital marketing tactics are a great way to interactive with prospective customers at multiple touch points leading up to the event.
The idea is that your target audience will have already had some interaction with your brand before the show encouraging them to stop by your booth or set up a sales meeting. This increases their chances of converting from a prospect to a customer.
Showcase something new
Want to give people a reason why they should stop by your booth? Showcase a new product or service. Since trade shows are the ideal opportunity to network with prospective customers, make the most of the time by revealing a new product or service.
Launching a new product at a trade show is a great way to make a big impression and bring your product in the limelight. Have your sales team offer product demonstrations at the booth so that booth visitors can experience the new product first hand. Potential customers can ask any questions on and provide instant feedback on the showroom floor.
Make sure your booth stands out from the masses
Turn your booth from boring to exciting by investing in an exhibit that stands out. You want your boothto captivate the eyes of prospective customers. Make sure your exhibit design pops and grabs the attention of people walking by.
For example, if you are promoting a new beverage, offer samples available on tap at the show.High-quality branded giveawaysare always a huge traffic driver that sparks up conversation.
Invest in lead nurturing tools and follow up
When the event management team asks if you want to pay extra for lead capturing tools; say yes. Long gone are the days when your sales team has to keep up with tons of business cards to scan back at the office. Advances in technology has made lead capturing so much easier.
Today your sales team can capture leads using smartphones, tablets, and scanners to save prospective customers contact information.
A research study conducted by Salesforce showed that 80 percent of exhibitors didn’t follow up with leads after a trade show. If a salesperson reached out at all, it often took 50 days. If your sales team isn’t following up in a timely manner, lead opportunities are missed and the money and time your company invested at the trade show is wasted. To ensure your teams hard work pays off, make sure leads are followed up within 5 to 7 business days.
These are just a few steps to take to ensure your trade show experience garners the results you can for. The key to driving leads is to stand out, connect with your target audience in a way that they want to be communicated, and follow-up.