The quick list
1 Have an ‘open’ stand
2 Display up-to-date signage and literature
3 Think ‘brand’ when planning your stand
4 Map out your stand beforehand
5 Use banner-ups for a show-specific message
6 Have out-going, friendly, chatty people on your stand
7 Write a checklist!
8 The early, early bird gets the worm
9 Pick out the relevant information/ networking sessions
Or in detail
1. Have an ‘open’ stand
Avoid a rectangular table across the front of your stand area, as it says “I don’t care if you come in”. Use the back or side of the booth. If you need to park your literature (and yourself), try a small, bar-height table and stools towards the front of the space.
2. Display up-to-date signage & literature
Display clean signs as anything dirty, torn, or old will make your business seem outdated or irrelevant. If you need to replace old information, ask a signmaker to do it professionally, don’t go the DIY approach with paper and sticky tape! First impressions and all that!
Review your literature. Use upright stands to display it.
3. Think ‘brand’ when planning your stand
Partner with a professional design team for your stand supplies. Exhibition materials and furniture come in a wide range of styles, shapes and designs so you can pick the right model to suit your specific needs and tastes, which can then be customised. Include your graphics and brand-identifying elements, so the crowd knows exactly who you are, in just a single look. Put yourself in the shoes of a customer. Do you inspire confidence in your brand?
4. Map out your stand beforehand
Don’t crowd your space with furniture and inventory. Leave enough space for people to engage with you. Map it out using tape on the floor. Not too little either — it may look as if you aren’t really in business.
5. Use economy banner-ups for a show-specific message
Economy banners have their uses at (indoor) exhibitions, particularly if you customise them for that show with, for example, the hashtag of the event as well. Add your social media contact details!
Higher grade banner-ups will withstand repeated use. Outdoor shows need tough, weather-resistant equipment, which will repay you with durability.
6. Have out-going, friendly, chatty people on your stand
Choose wisely when it comes to assembling your team for the show. Your people should be outgoing and able to initiate a conversation. Talk to everyone, everywhere – even in line the line for coffee!
Get to know your neighbours too. They can watch your turf when you need to sneak away for a minute.
Don’t pounce! Have something to taste, smell, listen to, watch or feel? You need to appeal to all your visitors’ senses, as relevantly as you can. Be that welcoming beacon of calm amid the chaos where people can relax, and they may stick around to chat a bit longer. Don’t ask “Can I help you?”, and DO ask “What are you interested in?” Always ask “open” questions.
7. Write a checklist!
Write that checklist. You know the drill.
8. The early, early bird gets the worm
Get there in good time. This may seem obvious, not just in terms of getting a good parking space, setting up properly without panic, and ensuring packing materials, cables and any personal items are all out of sight before your event opens. It is also a great off-guard early chance for networking!
9. Pick out the relevant information/ networking sessions
Think about which sessions the buyers and contacts you’re looking for would attend. Check the show’s website and Twitter feed for last-minute program changes and other highlights.
The “F” word – FOLLOW-UP. Your post-show checklist should include more than merely reaching out to new contacts. Look for other opportunities to communicate. A follow up Linked In post, press release, Twitter tags, newsletter or email with news, new product or an award all extend your networking. Contact people while the exhibition is fresh.
Follow-up isn’t just about closing sales. It’s also about gauging an event’s Return on Investment. It’s wise to attend a show with pre-set goals in mind (think: media hits, investor interest or retail leads). Then you know whether it is worth doing it all again next year!
To optimise your presence at the exhibition you need to work with an experienced provider of trade show resources, such as Sign-Rite UK Ltd. Our design team will work closely with you to understand your specific goals and outcome of the show. We want to understand your brand distinctions and how your products or services differ from competitors in your industry, so you receive a display that showcases who you are and what you do in a way that is most effective for optimum impact.
With 30 years of sign and display history, our friendly team are happy to help and advise.
Please call 01568 616171, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Or check our website for ideas and inspiration at www.sign-rite.co.uk