We all know face-to-face interactions are the best way to close business. You can cold-call a million times over, but it’s about as useful as throwing spaghetti at the wall. This means when you’re exhibiting at an event, it’s all the more reason to understand how you’re measuring the success of an event and how you can drive the best results. So, here are a few tradeshow tips to generate more buzz at your next show:
1. Set-up meetings with your hottest prospects. You can’t guarantee you won’t be busy if someone just randomly stops by your booth. It’s important to set a scheduled time, so you can have some uninterrupted conversation and give your prospect the attention they deserve.
2. Sponsor a speaking engagement. Much to the point above, booth attendance is a gamble at best. If you have a specialized knowledge base that can improve your reputation as a thought leader in your industry, this is a great gateway to target your prospects. Share your best practices or dive into a real-life case study to attract decision-makers and influencers in your space.
3. Create an enhanced tradeshow booth experience. We know sponsorships can be pricey – and depending upon your speaking experience, #2 may not be your preferred way to engage potential clients. That shouldn’t stop you from finding a more personal way to connect. By creating a more interactive booth, you’re not just asking people to stop by. You’re inviting them in. Whether event attendees are playing a game or making a movie on a green-screen, this is your opportunity to build your relationship with them. Take full advantage of that.
4. Ditch the paper takeaways and go digital. It’s 2018, so please not another tradeshow. Is anyone else surprised we still have to mention this? Yet, here we are. The constant directive to “go green” obviously missed the event circuit. And forget for a moment being eco-conscious just for the sake of it. Printed marketing and sales materials give you exactly zero insights into prospect engagement. Meanwhile, digital materials can provide a wide array of information based on the system you use to track them. And lucky for you, we know a thing or two about that.
5. Host a live demo. Let’s assume you’ve done everything right and foot traffic at your booth is abundant. Capitalize on that opportunity by showcasing your product to the masses on a large screen. It will give you the chance to field common questions at scale, not to mention it has stopping power for passersby. Go one step further and promote scheduled live demos on social media using the event hashtag to gather a crowd.
Once that’s all said and done, it’s time to conduct a post-event analysis. Whether you’re an event marketer or seasoned sales professional, the ultimate objective is how to close business as efficiently as possible. You can begin by assessing your booth attendance. How many attendees did you interact with? Did anyone come back to your booth more than once? If so, why? It is also imperative to understand overall prospect and customer engagement. How are your leads and existing clients responding to your digital marketing efforts? Are they visiting your website? Responding to emails?
By taking these steps to evaluate your results, you will be able to more clearly understand what to avoid at your next show – and even more importantly, what you should scale!