If your business attends trade shows as a way to get leads or sell to your customers, then you know how important it is to attract attendees to your trade show booth. Trade shows have a small window of opportunity that must be used to the fullest. In addition to that, setting up a trade show booth is a significant expense and you have to maximise your ROI. This infographic illustrates what you can do before, during, and after your trade show exhibition to have the most impact and bring in the most success.

Boost Trade Show Attendance

Before the Trade Show

Before the Trade Show

The work on cultivating leads and planning for your trade show must start well in advance of the actual show. Research your target market and plan ahead. Analyse your customers’ average demographics, buying habits, and general preferences. This can be done by looking at past sales data or even calling a few past customers ahead of time to try to gauge interest. Send your current and past customers promotional materials about your upcoming exhibit booth. Give them an incentive to come by the booth during the show and perhaps even set up appointment times if that aligns with your trade show strategy.

During the Trade Show

During the Trade Show

Proper preparation ahead of time lets you execute your plan during the trade show. Although this section says “during the trade show”, many of these items must be planned ahead. Whether it is ordering your promotional products ahead of time, setting up the dress code, preparing signage and other marketing collaterals, planning ahead of time will keep things moving smoothly during the trade show.

Make a checklist for what needs to be done ahead of time and plan out what will be done during the trade show:

  • Promotional Products and Giveaways: These needs to be ordered ahead of time and you might choose to have different levels of branded gifts. For example, a less expensive one that is given to everyone and a more expensive promotional product for customers who make a qualifying purchase or fill out an information card. Always ask for at least a business card in exchange for a promotional product.
  • Add Attention Grabbing Signage: You can use the same signage over again at each trade show, just make sure that they are doing the job at attracting visitors. If you need an upgrade or updated signage, make the investment because it is one of the most important things at attracting visitors. Signs should be informative, to the point, and able to be seen from a distance.
  • Hold Contests or Drawings: These types of event can attract a lot of attention and also create a buzz around your booth. It can elevate your brand and improve your sales.
  • Promotions and Show Specials: Give your customers and booth visitors an incentive to make their purchase during the trade show. It can be a discount, special pricing, or a free gift.
  • Offer a Service: There are different ways to attract people to your booth, offering a service like a chair massage is definitely something that trade show attendees appreciate. You can also offer coffee, foods, music, or have an entertaining booth host, like a magician or a model.
  • Use Eye Catching Visuals: In addition to signage, visuals such as digital screens, video monitors, or mobile devices that can intrigue, engage, and inform attendees are excellent sources of aides to help assist you getting the information to trade show attendees.
  • Plan the Dress Code: If you all wear company shirts, have those ordered and pressed ahead of time. Try to coordinate all booth employees to look coordinated at the very least if not matching “uniforms”.

After the Trade Show

After Trade Show

When the trade show is over, your job is not done. It is important to understand that selling at the trade show is not your only goal. Make the most of all of the leads you generated at the trade show and work to convert those leads into sales, add that data into your database, and work on transforming leads into customers. At the same time, be sure to follow up with those who did place orders, send thank you notes, and set up a follow up contact schedule to maximise reorders.

Boost Trade Show Attendance Infographic

Infographic Photo Credit: Pinterest