We were talking to experts in the MICE industry, asking about their experiences and advices in the trade show field.
Simon Harding from theatrebreaks.com opened us the eyes about how should exhibitors present at trade shows. He is experienced in travel, leisure and technical shows - B2B. Simon tells: "There are never bad shows and exhibitions - it is your fault if one doesn't work for you.
There are several things to do at a trade show. Give people a reason to want to visit your stand, to talk about it afterwards, to give yourself a chance to filter the good prospects and give you an excuse to call them afterwards! Fail to do any of these, especially the last, and you have just wasted your money." This is also what we are repeating for years - it is difficult to stand out at shows without having the right attitude, body language, and creativity.
Simons confirms that "Your stand is an event, that needs to be promoted. Don't leave it to the organisers. Yes, they will list you but, you need to do more than that to stand out from the crowd. Make your stand a destination that visitors now they want to go to before they even get to the exhibition. You are the headline act and the rest are all in the chorus! Lastly, know that not everyone will be interested in your product, even if they are interested in your or your stand. Expect to lose people on the way... in fact, you should *aim* to lose people on the way. There are a lot of freeloaders at exhibitions and you don't want to be wasting your time with them!
Put the right people on the stand. Someone might know the product but do they know people. Also, treat it like a marathon - they are tiring and most of the reason why the last day is usually rubbish is because everyone is knackered! Lastly, have fun!"
Lauren Ryder from leading-edge.global is about to sponsor at their first Expo - Seamless in Sydney ICC 13-14 March. Her experience in marketing is giving her the right inspiration to play with big boys like Oracle and the others. "As the only consulting company sponsoring, we've decided to make our stand really different - it will be set up like a lounge room with white leather and hot pink furniture, we'll be serving lemonade and lollypops and we'll have a really nice atmosphere where people can come and chat with us about their challenges and how we can assist them.
Sponsoring an Expo stand was never part of our marketing plan but we wanted to run a Breakfast Session with the same target audience at the same time so we ended up sponsoring and we'll be holding our breakfast panel at the conference!
One of my main goals is to get 3 new clients on within 2 months of the conference as this will have us achieve our ROI. With 300 0 attendees I don't think this will be a huge challenge but it will be in the execution!"
We are looking forward to the results and the follow up of our experts. The visualization and the marketing strategy will play always a huge role at trade shows, otherwise, you can go and sell your products on the weekly market in a village - but creativity beats capital!!