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Having a Great Trade Show: Our Top 7 Tips

Having a great trade show takes effort. Most organizations measure success at a trade show in leads, R.O.I., and opportunities, and it’s important to get results that justify the investment.

What you do for an event will be what makes or breaks how successful your experience there will be. Want to get results and have a great show? Scroll down to find out our top tips for making that happen.

Start your planning early.

Getting started way ahead of schedule is the smartest thing you can do. Tell your team about the travel dates early so that the flights can be booked as soon as possible and you can reserve hotel rooms early. Then turn your attention to the logistics of the event itself and get what you can have worked out done as early as you can so everyone will be sitting pretty by the time that departure day arrives.

Get your team ready.

It’s important to make sure that your team is prepared for the show. You want everyone to be briefed on pertinent information and to know the schedule, their duties, and what will be happening.

Make sure that everyone knows their hours and they stay informed on meetings and what is going on through a calendar, app, printed schedule, or emails. You should also create a briefing of everything that will be happening via a printed logistics document with phone numbers and contact info of everyone on the team. You may wish to set a preparatory meeting before the departure for the trade show that provides a thorough overview and answers any questions.

Try to schedule meetings before the show even starts.

Pre-scheduling meetings at your booth with customers and prospective customers or even partners could help make your next show a success. Talk to your team and set a goal for pre-scheduled meetings and see if you can make it.

Utilize social media.

These days, social media is a force to be reckoned with. Whether you’re utilizing Twitter, Instagram, SnapChat, Facebook, other social media or a multitude of these, you can advertise your company by posting photos or video or inviting attendees to come to your station by putting your number and the hashtag of the event on your posts. Incite them to find you by letting them know about your demo, giveaway, or contest.

Give stuff away.

A giveaway draws attendees in. Get a little inspired and put some unique things among what you’re offering. Or you can be consistent and have an espresso machine on hand– whatever brings in people to see what’s going on and hang out for a while, breaking the ice and leading to potential leads.

Scan.

Make sure that your team knows how to operate a badge scanner and prioritize using it. Scan a lot and use the note feature to add information that will help with any followup after the show. If someone stops by, scan their badge. Don’t miss the chance to get a good lead!

End of show duties.

After the show, have a debriefing call with your team. Talk about what worked about what you did and what might be changed for next time. For followup, ensure leads are uploaded in the CRM system and shared within two days’ time after the event. It will provide details about qualified leads, traffic, and potential opportunities.

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