What measures can be put in place to ensure you make the most of your exhibition experience? Here are some basics to consider.
Without a doubt the most important element to any successful exhibition stand is the staff on it.
Your exhibition stand builder can build an amazing display, you can have incredible giveaways and promotions, you can do all the pre-show marketing you like, but if your staff on the day are not vested in the stand then it is a waste of time.
Having well trained staff is critical to building relationships with visitors.
Let’s keep this simple:
- Trained (for the exhibition) and knowledgeable staff
- Well presented in uniform or business attire
- Always on their feet – no slouching around at the back of the space!
- With their phones and laptops away
- Providing a united and consistent visitor experience.
Don’t allow staff to create a barrier to entry by standing in a group at the front of the stand.
Encourage staff to be out there in the aisle drawing people into your stand!
STAND OUT FROM THE CROWD
Your exhibition stand provides the first impression of your business. It needs to be open and inviting, easily identified and on brand. If the visitor never makes it to your stand, engagement is not possible.
Partnering with a quality exhibition stand builder with a creative designer is the first piece in the puzzle.
A successful exhibition design draws people onto your exhibition stand and keeps them there. Picture the stand with the crowd milling around it and spilling into the aisles – they got it right. How can you?
A good exhibition stand design will provide multiple opportunities for interaction between your brand and the visitor. These could be through:
- Striking design and graphics elements
- Creative use of lighting
- Product demonstration or displays that allow visitors to get hands on
- On stand competitions or games
- The use of food or beverages
- Audio visual displays
- Providing visitors with a chance to sit and take a break!
On stand engagement is really only limited to your imagination. Search the net for ideas but don’t overlook your objectives for exhibiting by being too creative.
Your exhibition stand needs to be functional and convey a clear message to all visitors.
Always have a result in mind when you choose a promotional product. You need to link the promotional product with the experience the visitor had on your stand.
Be creative but don’t lose track of your objectives. Consider a range of products. For example; one for existing customers who already know and understand your offering and something different for potential customers.
Don’t overlook the interaction you have with the visitor when you hand over the item – it is so often an after-thought as a visitor leaves, that provides no emotional connection with you or your brand. The item is thrown in a bag with other items from the day and all is forgotten.
What is said and done when you hand the item over is why the visitor will remember you. It will also make the next step (post show follow-up) much easier.
BEYOND THE EXHIBITION
Engagement should begin well before the exhibition and continue well beyond the close. Exhibiting is a marathon, and the show days are the final kilometres before the sprint to the line.
Your campaign should have clear objectives from the moment you sign on. Take responsibility for driving people to your stand on the event days.
The organiser will help with this, but ultimately the more time invested the better the result.
Organisers arm you with marketing collateral to assist. They may even offer PR opportunities through the show – take advantage of any opportunity you get.
One of my pet hates is jumping into an exhibitor directory to see no information about the company, no logo, no link to a website and no show offers! Who is going to go looking for this exhibitor at the exhibition?
- Update staff email signatures to let people know your attending the event.
- Use the show hashtags and reference the show in social media.
- Build up anticipation within your network that you are attending
- Market that you are launching a product at the exhibition
- Let people know that you’re running a competition at the event.
During the exhibition, post images of your stand and reminders of where and when people can see you. Hit that database for anyone who didn’t make it to day one reminding them there is still time!
Give your network reasons and benefits to attend the event that create urgency – FOMO!
Post Show Follow- up
You’ve ticked all the boxes, you’ve driven people to your stand, you’ve gathered all the information you require – now you can have a few days off? Hell no!!
It is crucial that you follow up within 48hrs of the event close. While your engagement with the visitor is still fresh in their mind, you must follow through in a timely manner.
Your response needs to be personalised and tailored to each interaction – don’t send a generic email out to all visitors that can be glazed over.
Get on the phone, and if possible, get the salesperson who met the visitor to do so. Reverting to email is a backward step and negates the success of the face to face.
Ensure you and your stand builder are taking these into consideration from the beginning, or feel free to contact us at Custom Solutions Group today to ensure you “Stand out From the Crowd” with a stress free display experience.