Exhibit and event marketing can be a complex process with many moving parts. Based on years of research, including detailed surveys and interviews of top exhibitors, we've identified 10 ways companies can improve their results and get the most out of tradeshows.
While each company and exhibit program is different, our research has identified the following areas to focus on when trying to improve results:
1. Better pre-show strategic planning, event and booth space selection
2. Enhance pre-show marketing and social media
3. Improve exhibit design, branding, graphics and marketing materials
4. Staff exhibits with better trained and higher-level employees
5. Showcase quality product samples and demonstrations
6. Provide high-quality, relevant education and information
7. Offer effective promotions, incentives, giveaways and drawings
8. Take advantage of event management value added benefits and networking opportunities
9. Focus on lead management and measurement
10. Conduct post-event evaluations—and apply what was learned to the next show...
Also consider that the No. 1 reason why attendees go to shows is to see new products, often products they have seen online and want to see up close and "touch and feel."
Recommendation to exhibitors: If you are not launching new products and services at shows, then focus on promoting something else that is new.
Michael Hughes is managing director, research and consulting at Red 7 Media, a division of Access Intelligence and parent company of EXPO magazine.