Trade Show Booth Design Basics
- Have good presentation – use vibrant colors, arrange products logically, have comfortable flooring, ensure your brand is very visible, possibly with the use of a tag line
- Have something to say, such as a unique new product or a live demo featured several times a day. Put your products where people can touch it, add QR codes beside all pieces on display
- Have staff uniforms, ensure all are briefed on the show goals, that they have product knowledge and are genuinely welcoming and friendly
- Offer give-away products with your company name on it or free food snacks
- Book the booth space as early as possible to ensure your booth location is where you need it to be in terms of foot traffic and visibility
- Add a scent that may draw visitors in, something subtle but attracting, such as essence of vanilla.
- Add some soft background sounds or music that fits with your brand message to provide some life to the booth space.
EFFECTIVE ACTIVITIES AT THE SHOW
First ensure that your booth is built correctly, that everything that should work does work, and all the graphics are mounted firmly. On the first morning of the show, ensure that staff will arrive one hour early for a de-briefing. Assign a booth leader responsible for ensuring that everything runs smoothly and manages the leads. The de-briefing provides one last opportunity to communicate the event goals, the lead generating process, any special promotions and demos through the show, and to go over the staffing schedule. They should be aware of the social media activities leading up to the show. Have someone assigned to follow through on the Twitter posts such as the giveaway you set up before the show. Anyone that becomes a Twitter follower gets entered into a prize drawing. Do a series of small daily giveaways, Tweeting the winners at the end of each day and one grand prize.
Launching new products is a key reason for people to attend the show. But cater also for those that could not attend in person. Actively solicit comments from these people so you can leverage the social network for leads and product enhancements. Also Blogging subscribers that could not attend may be updated during the show by posting special reports a few times a day on various activities or promotions. Making use of video during this time is invaluable so make sure to upload it to Facebook, YouTube and your website.
AFTER THE SHOW – FOLLOW UP
It is really important to process the sales leads as quickly as possible after the show. This means processing the types of leads, dividing them up by sales territory and distributing them out to the local salesperson for follow-up. Meantime, any literature that was requested is mailed out too, all this within 2 weeks or sooner from the last date of the event.
Social media once again is an invaluable tool. It allows you to extend the relationship with those visitors and prospects that you made contact with during the show time. It helps to develop the relationship long after the show has finished and before the prospect has a chance to forget all the good things that they saw and spoke with the show staff at the show. Prompt and professional follow-up will ensure the dollars invested in the show do not go to waste and increases the likelihood to gain new customers.
Continuing with posting Blogs about the technical aspects of the products launched at the event will ensure traction as knowledge and familiarity about the products develop and helps to gather new visibility outside of the early adopters that appeared at the show. Remember that customers are looking to companies to solve their problems, be the first to address and answer those questions.
Meet with the key team members from your sales and marketing team to determine the key successes and failures at the show. Measure the goal hit rates and the closed sales ratio up to 6 months after the show. Use an on-line analytics tool to measure the relative success of your social media and inbound marketing campaign. Ensure that your Management team receives a report that includes key statistics and metrics that show ROI and the value of the event to the business. And finally, strategize on how to improve in time for the planning of the next show.