If you’re planning to participate in a trade show this year, you’re part of a strong trend. A 2015 EventTrack study by the Event Marketing Institute and Mosaic reports that a significant 79% of the brand respondents say they will execute more event and experiential programs this year compared to last year.
Why the enthusiasm for event marketing? Survey respondents cited goals of increasing/creating brand awareness, improving sales and enhancing product knowledge and understanding, as well as influencing deeper customer involvement.
Of course, if you’re committing the dollars, time and staffing to event marketing, you’ll want to make the most of your opportunity. Here are the top five ideas to drive trade show booth traffic:
- Promote, promote and promote some more! Announce your participation and event details prominently on your website or, better yet, create a splash page specifically for it. Add trade show notifications in the signatures of all of your organization’s email communications. And, if your goal is to reach a broad audience, distribute press releases to target media outlets. Of course, advertising is another avenue to consider, including online banner ads.
- Have direct mail deliver for you. Begin by notifying everyone on your internal database of customers or supporters. Better yet, invite even more people by renting lists of names that fit your target profile; there are thousands of lists with which to micro-target your most promising prospects!
- Publicize your event in social media. Appeal to more prospects by creating event pages on LinkedIn and Facebook. You’ll not only reach your regular followers, but also gain the chance for them to “share” their intentions of attending with their friends and acquaintances – many of whom are likely to be among your prime targets.
- Remind your invitees shortly before the event. Don’t allow your top prospects to lose track of your trade show participation. Postcard mailings are an inexpensive way to reach out with save-the-date communications and other event reminders; E-cards are another quick and cost-effective option.
- Post signs to ensure your booth is a can’t-miss attraction. Having drawn your top prospects to the event space, don’t let them wander off – or into the arms of your competitors. If available, purchase poster or banner space from the exhibit hall to direct visitors to your booth. And, once there, make a great first impression by ensuring your trade show displays, marketing materials and event handouts (i.e., advertising specialties) are as attractive, appealing and up-to-date as possible.
Are you in the midst of planning for your trade show booth at an upcoming exhibit? Last minute efforts won’t provide you with the results you’re looking for, so remember these tactics for driving traffic to your booth, and contact us to discuss additional ideas.