Memoirs from an exhibitionist – tips on exhibiting at shows (Part 2)

Posted on: August 31st, 2009

Following on from last week’s post, we have part 2 of our top tips for exhibiting at shows.

Manual

Read the exhibitor manual in detail – it’s your bible! This will contain all of the info you need to know for the show including bump in/bump out times and details, delivery details, permits, health and safety regulations etc. Be sure you’ve got everything covered so there are no surprises.

Staff

I’ve seen lots of brands spending big bucks on flash stands only to man them with less than impressive promotional staff. Without doubt the best people to man your stand are your own staff as they have the knowledge and passion that you wish to convey to visitors. If this is not feasible then promotional staff will need to be fully briefed so they can confidently engage with visitors.

Stock

I’ve also seen lots of brands underestimate the stock for exhibtions! Always overestimate, just to be safe. Visitors at food shows in particular want to eat and drink A LOT so no stingy samples! The last thing you want is to run out half way through the show. Also consider whether you will store stock onsite or ship it in before or after each day.

Promotions

Competitions and promotions are great for capturing data to expand your customer database. They also allow for a reason to continue communicating with visitors after the show. It is important to carefully consider your prize – make it relevant and exciting for customers to encourage entries and don’t forget the permit.

Leverage

Think about how you can promote your involvement through other channels to excite customers and encourage visitation. Mention the show on your website, newsletter, blog, in direct mail, in store etc. Consider publicity opportunities also.

Measurement

Understanding what came of your participation in the show is paramount. Track sales, customer acquisition, competition entries, data capture – anything that will allow you to demonstrate the show’s success and facilitate comparisons year on year. Also, can you estimate a cost per head? That is, the cost of participating against the number of people you reached. This will show whether the investment was worth it.

Finally, if you are going to be on the stand during the event – wear flat shoes and pre book a post show massage because you’ll need it!

I hope this helps any would be exhibitors out there. If you have any further advice or experience then please share it with me.

Posted by Jane Outen

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