2020 has begun, and so has a whole new year of trade shows for your industry. Trade shows provide you with a great opportunity to promote your business, acquire new clients, and forge stronger connections with other businesses in your industry. However, trade shows can also be expensive and zap a great deal of productivity from your office. If you don’t plan accordingly, you could wind up shelling out a lot of money for less-than-satisfactory results.
Before you head out to the first convention of the year, read these tips on how to make sure your business succeeds at all your 2020 trade shows.
Set Up a Great Booth
Trade show exhibition halls are crowded with vendors, so it can be difficult to make your booth stand out among the crowd and attract customers. But if you want people to visit your booth and if you want to impress current and prospective clients, you’ve got to do the best you can to make your booth look eye-popping.
At larger exhibitions, you’ll see that some of the largest businesses have very large, intricate (and expensive) booths. You don’t need a large or expensive setup to draw customers. Instead, opt for a custom trade show booth that’s:
- Clean and clutter-free
- Utilizes simple color schemes that match your branding
- Clearly communicates what your company sells
Consider having a seating area where interested customers can sit and talk with sales agents (and seating is high in demand at a trade show because most people are standing all day).
Have Freebies that Everyone Wants
One of the most fun things about trade shows is all the freebies that are given out by vendors. Most people love collecting these little giveaways, and they’re a great way to market your business. Unfortunately, most people discard them without ever really using them. You’re wasting your money if you give away freebies that are going to be quickly thrown in the trash, like stickers, brochures, and candy.
Order freebies that are small and cheap, but also which your customers can use for an extended period of time. The longer they have possession of your item, the more your brand that’s printed on it. Some good trade show giveaways include:
- Custom luggage tag
- Custom AirPod case
- Custom Stress Ball
- Custom Keychain
- Custom Lanyard
Host a Dinner
At your industry’s largest trade show, host a dinner for all of your current clients. A company-hosted dinner is truly one of the most important things you can do. Your clients are the reason for your success, and you want to show that you care about their business by paying for a nice dinner. Don’t go cheap. Book a table at a nice establishment and put everything on the company card. Be sure to plan to give a short speech and say a few kind words about each of your clients.
A trade show gives you the opportunity to sign up lots of prospective customers to your mailing list. In order to entice people to sign up, consider doing a raffle and give a raffle ticket to each customer that signs onto your mailing list.
Book and Budget in Advance
A trade show is an expensive endeavor, so put money away well ahead of time for:
- Hotel costs
- Baggage fees for larger items
- Company dinners
- Promotional items
Book your hotels and flights far in advance so you can save money.
Yes, trade shows can be expensive, challenging, and very stressful. But they can also be fun if you have the right attitude. You need to have fun for your company’s sake—nobody wants to visit a booth where everyone looks tired and grumpy. If you and your employees look like you’re having a blast, then you’ll be more approachable to prospective clients. Pump up some music at your booth, keep the coffee coming, and wear your best smile each day of the show.
In the evening, make sure you take some time to eat, kick your feet up, and get a good night’s rest so you’re ready to go at it again the next day. If you’ve got the energy for it, go and explore some of the local places if the trade show is being held in a different city.
Follow these tips and tricks and you’re bound to make the most out of your trade shows in 2020.