Trade shows, love them or hate them, but the fact remains there is no shortage of competition and there simply isn't enough allocated time for guests to visit every single booth.
The ultimate way to take full advantage of and optimize your trade show ROI, is to attract and meet as many potential leads at the trade show as you can. Simply have a display or booth a great start, but it likely won't generate enough potential clients to justify your trade show budget.
Several factors can weaken your likelihood of attracting quality leads. If you are making any of the following mistakes at trade shows, now is the perfect time to change your technique, increase your ROI and make that next trade show event worth your time, effort and money.
Here are 5 reasons why people aren't visiting your trade show booth:
1. You did not make appointments.
Attracting visitors to your booth does not have to begin when the trade show starts. Before you enter the conference hall, it is vital to get in touch with attendees prior to the start of the event. Research the pre-show attendee list and create an action plan to engage participants and attract them your booth. If you are hosting a meeting or event, be sure to discuss it with your potential clients and ask them to visit your booth.
If you're well established in the industry, you can also take things to the next level. Pull out your list of contacts and begin setting up meetings to have them meet you at your trade show booth. Create as many appointments as you possibly can pre-show. This enables you to bring in traffic to your booth prior to the show, before it even starts.
2. You did not create a theme.
Trade show booths can all look the similar to the many guests. Often, trade show displays are well-designed, but also pretty boring easily letting potential leads walk right by. A smart way to stand out of the crowd in an ocean of banners and booths is generate a new theme presence.
An excellent theme serves as eye candy and will attract visitors to your booth. It should be colorful and exciting, yet the message or branding should be simple enough to lead them in to your booth. The key to a successful trade show booth theme is to make it both product-relevant and eye-catching.
3. You were sitting behind your table.
If you are sitting behind your kiosk or table, looking for attendees to approach your booth, you're almost guaranteed to meet fewer people and collect fewer leads. Get up from behind your table and approach people passing by. If you have your team with you, encourage them to walk the aisles and shake hands while passing out business cards. This simple tactic allows you or your team to communicate directly with people and attract them into your booth. This easy act of moving out of your booth to promote one-on-one engagements is one of the simplest methods for gathering new leads.
4. You are not promoting on social media.
Is this trade show event trending online or does it have a social hashtag? If you have a promotional event or giveaway occurring, be sure to use the trade show hashtag to let guests know to visit your booth. Keeping socially active on will remind everyone at the trade show of your marketing campaign and drive them to stop by and discover you, plus delivering one-on-one with people on social media will help them feel more linked to your brand and much more likely find out more about you and your company.
5. You did not use props.
When your booth doesn't boast something interesting or communicate directly with people, why would visit it? A trade show event is one of the few situations where you can speak directly with your potential clients face-to-face, so take utilize benefit of a live environment by delving their senses. Are you currently releasing a fresh, new product? Consider showcasing an intriguing product demo or 3D computer animation demonstrating the way the product works or better yet, conduct a live product review engaging visitors where they can touch and feel your new product.
No matter the theme you've chosen, consider combining interactive elements to your booth that compliment that theme. That may involve a competition, a raffle, game or raffle that delivers the chance to win a free product-related prize. Be sure to keep creating those leads though; have guests sign up using their contact information to be able to take part or play.
Trade shows are considered a great spot to reach new contacts and generate new prospects. Maximize your investment by preventing these common trade show blunders and give guests every reason to visit your booth and build a relationship with you and your business.