Archive for December, 2015

5 Tips to Creating An Atmosphere At Your Next Trade Show

When you’re putting your exhibit together, it’s very important that you create a welcoming and upbeat atmosphere. This will get people interested in your product and could boost your sales. After all, when trade show attendees have an enjoyable or pleasant experience at your booth, they are much more likely to buy your product or services well after the trade show is over. To ensure that you’re making the most of the trade show, here are 5 tips for creating a great atmosphere at your booth.

Use The Right Lighting

Make sure that you highlight the signage and products that you want to stand out at your booth. This will quickly draw your customer’s attention to the main areas of the display, and will help you to connect with clients at a faster rate. Just make sure that the lights serve as accents and are not too bright, since this can be a real turnoff to potential customers.

Choose an Ideal Layout

Your trade show exhibit should be designed in a way that will immediately catch the eye of attendees. Your marketing materials, as well as the actual booth, should be situated so that it is easily accessible as well. Don’t focus so much on the layout for the booth being “cool” that you forget to make it practical. Yes, bright colors and clever lighting can be important, but you want attendees to be able to interact with you. Your signs and displays should be seen from every angle of the display so that you won’t miss any potential leads.

Design Your Exhibit In Style

The marketing design for your trade show booth should be specific to the culture and personality of your brand. Your design should be included in all the marketing messaging for the booth, including signage and the uniforms of the booth staff. The colors and patterns displayed in your exhibit should also be customized just for your brand. The trademark colors you’ve chosen for your company should be at the forefront of all the exhibit decorations.

Make the Exhibit Attractive

There’s so much you can do when you’re trying to make your trade show booth completely original. Interactive games that customers can play as they pass by your table can get the attention of attendees. You can also set up a massage chair or two at your booth so that attendees can relax while you inform them about your product or service. Promotional models who are friendly and engaging can help to improve the reputation of your brand and provide a positive image for your company.

Just Add Music

Music can lure attendees to your booth, if you use it the right way. Consider the location of the trade show and your booth before deciding which music to use, or whether to use music at all. For example, if you’re at a trade show in a large convention center, it’s not a good idea to have music at the booth, since it will be competing with the noise in the venue. For smaller shows, music that isn’t too loud could be appealing. The type of music you select should depend on the demographic as well. For instance, if you’re dealing with young technology professionals, the latest pop or hip-hop songs could be appropriate, while an older audience may appreciate classical tunes or music from a particular decade.

After you’ve determine how to incorporate all these elements into your display, make sure you have professional staff to man your booth. Choose people from your company who are friendly and engaging, and make sure they’re knowledgeable about your product or service to increase the chances that the trade show will be a success.

5 Secrets to Trade Show Exhibit Messaging

As you’re preparing for your next trade show exhibit, remember that you’ll be competing with other companies for the attention of all the attendees. To ensure that your booth will stand out, think about all the distracting factors that potential customers will encounter. For instance, there are streaming videos at trade show display booths, as well as customers giving customer descriptions on megaphones. The marketing stations are likely filled with flashing lights and brightly colored signs as well, so it’s important to get the attention of potential clients right away.

Dave Brown, Optima Graphics vice president of sales, states that while experts say that you have three to seven-seconds to get an attendee’s visual attention, that’s not necessarily true. The bright colors and flashing lights may get you a glance from a client. If they like what they see, they’re much more likely to come over to your booth and ask questions.

Here are 5 secrets to keep in mind as you put together the messaging for your trade show booth.

Expand On Your Brand By Understanding Your Market

When you’re designing a new exhibit, it’s important to review all the design elements. This will help you to consider all marketing aspects for your brand and its messaging. Take into account the history behind your company, your business aspirations, the actual services and products you offer, and your target demographic when putting your messaging together. Director of marketing for the Trade show Network Marketing Group Karin Roberts, warns against not using trade show displays as a way to effectively market your company. Roberts states that displaying a consistent image and message on all your materials can really make a great impression.

Create Clear and Attainable Goals

Create your messaging based on the professional goals you want to accomplish with your trade show exhibit. Do you have a certain number of leads you want to get by the end of the show? Are you looking to sell a specific amount of products? Do you want more people to simply be aware of your company and what you have to offer? Make sure these goals are clear in the messaging you send to customers. For instance, if you’re trying to get leads, pay attention to what people in your demographic need to see and hear in order to do business with you, and showcase these messages in your marketing materials.

Stand Out Against the Competition

Your trade show exhibit needs to stand out in every way. There’s a good chance that companies promoting products and services similar to yours will be at the event, so you’ve got to find a way to get the attention of as many potential clients as possible. Make all your selling points one of a kind. Don’t say general things in your messaging, like “we provide great customer service.” Give customers details about what makes your business so great.

Address the Priorities of Your Customers

When you’re putting your marketing messaging together, you have to make sure that the priorities and needs of your customers are directly addressed. It’s also important that your consumers actually understand what you have to offer. For instance, if you’re selling a technological device, make sure you tell customers how the product will make their lives easier, as opposed to focusing on all the technical components of the product. For instance, it’s fine to tell your clients about the parts that make up the product, but consumers need to know that what you’re selling will improve their time management skills or keep their homes safe. These are tangible selling points.

Create a Personal Connection

Finally, remember that anyone coming to your trade show display has probably experienced the stares that come from each of the professionals manning your booths throughout the convention center. This can be intimidating and uncomfortable. Instead of making people feel obligated to come to your booth, try a more personable approach. Do something that will entertain people or catch their interest, like performing tricks with technology or offering the opportunity for a hands-on demo. This keeps clients engaged and makes your booth and your company much more memorable.

The Long Term Benefits of Trade Show Booth Promotional Products

It’s a good idea to invest in promotional products that you can give out at trade shows. The products you choose can be items that are practical, such as calculators or water bottles, or you can go for marketing items that will effortlessly showcase your logo, such as t-shirts or backpacks. Of course, the whole point of giving out promo materials is to increase awareness about your brand, and to spread information about your business to people who could turn into new clients.

No matter what promotional products you choose, it’s important that these items have a long-term positive effect on trade show display attendees. There are several clients who will lose the products shortly after leaving the trade show. However, there are some consumers who will keep the items they get from your marketing event and use these items for long periods of time after the event. This means your logo and slogan will be in the homes and offices of people who could actually make a difference in your profits.

How Long Do People Keep Promotional Items?

Whether it’s a calendar, mouse pad or baseball cap, most of the attendees who stop by your trade show display booth are likely to keep these items for several months six and a half, on average, according to research conducted by the Advertising Specialty Institute. The study also indicated that promotional calendars given out at trade shows and other marketing events were used for the longest period of time (about 9 months) and pens or pencils were kept for a little over 5 months, which was the shortest length of time that customers kept marketing products. This is definitely something to keep in mind when you’re deciding which promotional items to distribute.

The Promotional Products Association International also conducted a study, which revealed that most trade show participants have at least one promotional item in their homes, and 91 percent of the people who were part of the study said there was at least one marketing item in their kitchens alone. When you give out a product that can be used for an extended period of time, you have a bigger chance of gaining loyal clientele over time and spreading your company’s positive marketing message to various demographics.

Great Exposure Comes from Durable Products

The more useful your product is, the better. Consumers automatically feel that practical items will last longer, according to the ASI Global Advertising Specialties Impressions Study. Nearly 80% of consumers who kept items from trade shows and marketing events did so because they deemed the items useful. The more attendees keep your products in their homes and offices, the more they will be seen by other people, who will see the items and ask questions. When you’ve given out great products and been especially friendly and knowledgeable during the trade show, customers are likely to remember and speak about your business fondly.

It has also been discovered that even if a customer doesn’t use the item every day, they still won’t forget your brand or its mission if they decide to take a promotional item from the trade show. So, if you’re going to go with clothing items or accessories as your marketing materials, be sure to use high-quality materials, so you’ll make a great impression, even if the consumer doesn’t use the item on a daily basis.

Attendees Will Give Items Away

If a consumer isn’t using a marketing item, the ASI study revealed that 63% of these people will simply give the product to someone else. This is good news, since it indicates that your marketing efforts are not in vain, and will likely work better on someone who is more interested in what you have to offer. For instance, if an older individual went to a tech trade show and got information about an app or device that would benefit his/her college-aged child, the attendee is more likely to share this information with his/her child, which means the marketing information has immediately spanned two generations. Both of these groups have the potential to move your business forward.

These are just a few important things to keep in mind as you come up with the right trade show materials. If you think in practical terms while making the marketing items original and eye-catching, you’re sure to achieve marketing success.

Create a Trade Show Marketing Brochure From Your Website

Organizing a trade show takes a lot of planning. Looking at your company website in order to come up with ideas for your promotional materials can help to save you lots of time and money. Here are some important tips to keep in mind.

Use Linear Construction for the Marketing Brochure

When you’re looking through a website, you likely read each page separately. Of course, there are also some pages you skip over altogether. That’s why it’s easy to edit or write a website page by page. However, when visitors come to your site, they browse around, and jump from page to page, in the order they choose. The information that is presented in your brochure should be visually appealing and organized, which is why you need linear construction.

Linear construction means that each section of the marketing brochures leads to the next section. Be sure to organize your promotional material into a “funnel” of information, going from broad to specific. For instance, you can place a general statement about your company at the front of the brochure, while providing details about the services you offer further along in the brochure. Near the end of the document, you can include a call to action, as well as current contact information for your company. Of course, you can change the order up a bit based on the design of your brochure or industry trends.

Edit Your Website Content Often

You can easily make a brochure from your company website when you edit the site often to make sure the design and readability is top-notch. It’s much cheaper to change up the content on your website and transfer it to a brochure than to try to change the brochure content. Once you’ve got the wording you want for your marketing materials, make sure the design of your brochure really stands out. Remember, you’ve got to make attendees interested in your booth in every way possible. A brochure that features bright colors or expert design is bound to get the attention of attendees right away.

It’s also important to make sure that both your website and the documents in your booth are easy to read. Attendees will likely want to visit a lot of booths, so you only have a short time to grab their attention. Try to include bullet points instead of full sentences, and create headlines for the main paragraphs you’d like customers to focus on.

Make the Brochure a Website Compliment

Remember that you’re probably not going to be able to include all the information from your website in your brochure. That’s why you should refer attendees who are reading your brochure to your company website. It keeps you from having to cram so much information into a small document. This will also serve as another marketing tool, and give attendees more information about what you have to offer when they visit your website.

Don’t Forget Your Material

Your brand material, including your tagline, mission statement and logo, should all be included in the brochure. These are the things that set your company apart and make your business memorable. Your logo or slogan could even be what makes attendees remember you, even if they lose your brochure. It’s best to hire a graphic design professional to bring the artistic magic of your website onto your marketing posters and other written materials.

These are just some of the ways you can use your website as the design template for your written marketing materials. The more you update the colors and content of your website for inspiration, the more prepared you’ll be to hand out brochures from your booth.

Trade Show Marketing Mistakes

When it comes to making your trade show a success, you probably know that you need to promote the event. This means informing possible participants about the event, so the venue will be filled with potential customers. There are effective ways to market your company. Here are five mistakes you should avoid when it comes to trade show marketing.

 

Focusing Too Much on Cost Per Impression (Instead of Cost Per Registration)

Don’t get caught in the struggle between activity and results. A lot of trade show marketers choose their tactics based on the CPM, or cost per impression. Yes, it’s wise to think about how much money you’re spending in trade show promotions, but that’s not the only thing to consider. Make sure you have a good idea of how much money and time is spent on getting each customer to register. Remember, time is money, and if your efforts aren’t helping customers to make quicker decisions, it may be time to think of a new plan.

 

Lacking Creativity With The Registration List

When it comes to segmentation, you’ve got two sources to choose from, existing marketing segment knowledge and data analysis that features new segmentation methods. While you likely know the basic demographic you’re going to attract, since most trade shows are organized by industry. The marketing for your trade show should focus on those who are interested in your products. However, you should also target people who have attended your trade shows in the past. You’ve got to get creative in your promotions, so you can both attain and retain customers. For instance, market to the attendees who participated in early registration differently than clients who simply registered before the deadline. You can also come up with local marketing campaigns for attendees who are from the same city or state as you.

 

No Marketing Database

In order to market your booth effectively, you’ve got to have a marketing database. The information that you have in your registration file is nothing more than a response list. So, make sure that you ask some key questions to customers who are filling out forms so you can market wisely. Get as much demographic data as you can, so you can customize your marketing. For instance, you may have some products that are suitable for families, and others that are best for small businesses. Pay attention to the answers on each registration card so that your future contact with the customer after the trade show will give the impression that you’ve been paying attention.

 

No Analysis of Cross Channel Communications

Another marketing mistake professionals make when it comes to the trade show display is not analyzing the cross channel communications. Remember, cost per impression is only one factor in marketing media selection. Digital and e-mail communication are becoming more effective ways of marketing, and are of very little cost to you. However, if you don’t start to implement cross-channel communications, you won’t know the cost per registration of your marketing efforts. Direct Hit Marketing analyzed 30 trade shows in 2014 and found that direct mail is more effective than emails, 3 to 1, and works better than an email only approach. So remember to combine classic methods with technology in a way that works best for your business.

 

Lack Of Up-Sales

Finally, remember to up-sale at your trade show booths in order to get the best results. Some trade shows have additional seminars that participants can pay an additional fee to attend. This, of course, can prove to be a source of additional income, and the up-sell would likely work best during registration. For instance, after an attendee registers online, quickly follow up with a special offer for the seminar. You can also find out how many attendees are attending from the same company so you can provide a company discount.  Think ahead when it comes to marketing so you can promote your products and services in a way that showcases your professionalism and marketing savvy.