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How to succeed at a trade show

Considering investing in a trade show this year? Done right, trade shows can help to increase visibility for your brand, check out what the competition is doing, gather new leads, train your sales team on new products and sales strategies, and build up your network. But how can you succeed at getting the best return on investment at a trade show? Here are five steps to succeeding at a trade show.

1. Do research

Before you choose a trade show to invest in as an exhibitor, it is important to do your research. If you are not sure what trade shows are available in your area you can search on for trade shows in your area. Select the ones you feel suit your business best and search for their websites to check out who are the exhibitors and attendees, and any other important information about the show. If you are still unsure if the show is for you, you can choose to visit it as an attendee and see for yourself what the show offers attendees and exhibitors.

2. Set up a plan

As for most opportunities in business, for them to be successful we need to plan. This should be started as soon as possible. Decide what the main goal of your presence at the show will be. Do you want to get exposure for your brand? Do you want to get some new leads? Or do you want to network? When you have set your main goal, you will be able to measure the success of the trade show or not.

You should also work out a budget for the event. Besides the exhibition space, you will need to allocate funds for displays, transport, accommodation, and marketing material for the event.

3. Be visible

You are attending the trade show to be seen so your booth must reflect the image you want someone to have of your business. It is important that all your branding is consistent and visible. Ensure that your fonts, colours, and logos are the same across all marketing material. Use images and minimal text as people can process images quicker and ensure that you have a call to action for visitors to your booth to participate in. Lastly, highlight what makes you unique from your competitors.

4. Take the right team

Some of your staff members are happy to work in the background while others may enjoy being in the limelight, when choosing a team for the show ensure it holds the best in your business. You want employees who are enthusiastic about your business and have a thorough knowledge of your products and business. They don’t necessarily need to know the nitty-gritty of each department in your business, but they do need to know who they can ask to get the information your potential leads are asking about.

5. Follow up

Many businesses do all the hard work for the show and get a good set of leads but then everything falls flat. You have to follow up on your leads shortly after the show. With your notes about the leads, it is important to send a personalised email to remain top-of-mind for your lead and give them the information they asked for.

By following these five steps you will have greater success at the next show and build your business brick by brick.

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