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      September 2014

      Five Tips for Setting up at Your First Trade Show

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      Once you’ve launched your business and you’re looking to get out there in the marketing world, you’re likely going to be hitting up conventions, trade shows, exhibitions, or conferences. These professional gatherings are a great place for you to meet potential customers or clients. It’s a wonderful opportunity for you… oh and for your competition too. If you want to keep attention on your business, you have to work hard to separate yourself from the other displays and booths. Follow some of our helpful tips for beginners and let us know how your first trade show experience went!

      Plan the Budget and Stick with It

      You’re not sure how this event will go, as this is the first one. You don’t want to invest too much into one thing, because you’re not sure what will and will not be a success. This is your year to test the waters. Plan budget friendly gifts and expenses, and take the time to learn what your crowd wants and what makes people convert.

       

      Get to Know the Crowd

      Consider the demographics and get to know your audience. When you can know what gets people excited, it’s easier to grab their attention. If someone leaves your booth and passes by later, be sure to reconnect with him or her. Obviously, you don’t want to harass the person if it’s clear they’re not interested, but people do respond well to being remembered. It’s subconscious flattery and it works.

      Set up to Match your Brand

      Obviously, you cannot control the color scheme of the venue, but if you can choose an area that reflects your business color scheme well, go for it. Moreover, you can bring your own accents and décor to help improve the branding at your booth, tent, or display.

      It’s Okay to Be Over Prepared

      Check the electrical outlets twice, and count all supplies several times. Bring backup supplies, and have backup employees readily available if needed. If you get a rush of people at your tent, you do not want to turn anyone away, and you certainly don’t want to learn about electrical problems when you’re trying to display a product.

      Leave an Impression

      While your product or service is perfect for someone, that person might not remember every single booth he or she visited – so its your job to make sure that doesn’t happen. Keep yourself on the mind with take home “swag” (stuff we all get). “Swag” often comes in the form of pens or T shirts with the company logo and name.
       
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      Trade Show Etiquette: How to Successfully Attract Attendees

      trade show etiquette

      Event marketers attend trade shows to gain leads and for brand management purposes. Whether exhibiting your brand in a small booth or one that is ample in floor space; there are certain elements that must be in place to effectively represent a brand and generate leads that can be transformed into sales.

      Event planners are often the managers of a company’s trade show booth, but their value may be best utilized in providing these crucial etiquette rules for trade show displays and representation. There are small aspects of trade show marketing that can go unnoticed by you, but will not go unnoticed by potential clients and customers.

      1. Greetings

      With so many booths and companies to explore, trade show attendees need a reason to spend time at your booth. Your personality and greeting is extremely important. The way you greet a visitor to your booth can make or break their impression of your company. Stand up and greet everyone. Don’t attempt to access their value or interest by appearances.

      2. Body Language

      Our body language speaks much louder than our words. As you greet an attendee, be open. Never greet with your arms crossed or sitting down with your legs crossed. This body language tells an attendee that you feel they are not important enough for you to be at your best. Your body language should say that you are excited that you have an opportunity to speak about your brand.

      3. Be On Time for Set-Up

      Know your trade show hours. You will need time to set-up your booth before attendees arrive. You never want to be in the middle of preparing your booth and displaying your items and information when an attendee is ready to chat with you. Preparedness and promptness says a lot about what kind of business you are representing.

      4. No Eating or Drinking at the Booth

      Eating and drinking at the booth is highly unprofessional. Having a mouth full of food or drink when someone steps up to your booth to ask a question, is one of the best ways to turn people away from your company or product. Professionalism is always key to a successful trade show experience.

      5. Be Engaging

      You will not attract attendees to your booth by sitting back and looking uninterested in the process. You must be engaging, by stepping up to the front of the booth, smiling, showing your interest and enthusiasm in what you are doing. Say hello to passersby and offer your brochures and any other reading materials you may have at your booth to those who stroll by. Never assume that because they may not stop to speak with you, that they are uninterested in your products and services. They may wonder about your business later and have no way of remembering who you are.

      6. Dress Well/ Be Well-Groomed

      You appearance is highly important. The saying about first impressions is still true today. You only have one opportunity to make a good one. You should be well-dressed and well groomed when you are representing your brand. If you are sending an employee or event planner as a brand representative, they should be advised to do the same.  Attendees will not care if they are your assistant or the CEO; they will respond to appearances.

      Never let a trade show opportunity pass you by, by being unprepared. Meticulous planning and professional and enthusiastic representation, is vital to a successful showing.

       
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