Four keystones for a successful trade fair participation
Exhibiting at a trade fair can be a good investment if it is done in the right way. Without a strategy and the right preparations, it can feel like an unnecessary cost and a lot of work. We have listed four keystones that make your trade fair participation successful.
Purpose and preparation
Start by defining the purpose of your trade fair participation. Why do you want to exhibit at a trade fair? By defining a clear purpose and goals that relates to it, you have a good basis for designing your participation. Your reason for exhibiting can be to build a brand, meet new customers, launch a new product or sell something on the spot. Take the time to define the purpose and ensure that it is rooted in the company’s overall vision. In addition, it is good to define some goals that relate to trade fair participation. The goals must be measurable so that you can follow up and evaluate your efforts after the fair. Make sure that both the purpose and the goals are in line with the business’s overall goals and are anchored in your marketing work.
Once you have defined your purpose, it is time to decide which trade fair is a good match with what you want to achieve. Find out which fairs are available and which match your business. Choose a fair with a clear connection to your goals and target group. The largest fair is perhaps not the most relevant for your particular business? Find out where your target group is and feel free to ask the trade fair organizer about who visits the trade fair and what they do to attract your target group.
TIP: Complete the fair with digital elements. Read and be inspired by how Formex has combined the fair with digital broadcasts.
Promote that you are exhibiting
Create a marketing campaign around your trade fair participation and integrate it into your existing marketing work. What do you want to communicate at the fair and what should the message be? Create a design that stands out and a message that clearly communicates what you want. The marketing material needs to have a common thread from advertising to trade fair booth.
Communicate with the target group about your trade fair participation. Do you want to meet existing customers at the fair or reach a new audience? Communicate with your followers on social media and tell them where you are exhibiting. If you want to reach a larger audience, use advertising to reach new customer groups. It may be possible to distribute discounted entrance tickets to your customers, contact the trade fair organizer to hear what opportunities there are. Also use the trade fair organizer’s digital platform to set up a digital stand, which you can use as a landing page for your ads.
Deliver at the fair
When the fair day has arrived, it’s time to deliver. Make sure that everyone who works at the fair knows what to communicate and that they have a lot of energy for the day. Regardless of whether the fair takes place physically, digitally or in a hybrid variant, the employees’ efforts are incredibly important. It’s time to do business and meet new customers! Make sure that everyone is properly dressed, that all material is in place, the technology is ready and that you as a team have a strategy for the day. Relieve each other with short breaks during the day so that the team can cope all day. Encourage your employees to take a tour of the fair to see what the competitors are doing. Which booth attracts visitors and why?
At the fair, you represent the company and are the face to the outside world. Make sure that visitors get something good to bring back home, regardless of whether they are interested in placing an order or not. If the visitors get a good impression of you as a company, they are happy to spread the word and suddenly the right person has heard a lot about you. Send the visitors something more than just sales material. Educate them, share your knowledge and create an impression that lasts.
When the fair is over, the stand is dismantled and you are back in the office, it is easy to get going with the next project. Make sure that you have already set aside time before the fair to follow up your participation. Hopefully you have many leads and now it’s time to follow up. Do what you promised – get in touch and follow up with all visitors you have met. Also follow up in your channels, talk about your trade fair participation and how good it was by sending a newsletter or writing a blog post.
Evaluate the fair participation together with the team. What went well and what could you have done better? Did the participants know you and was there any recognition from the marketing you did? Did the technical solution work if you were at a digital trade fair? What questions did the visitors have and could you answer them? Be sure to evaluate the whole process, everything from how the booth worked to whether the message seemed to get through. Follow up on purpose and goals. Did you achieve your set goals and purpose?