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How to Make the Most Out of Participating in Trade Shows

Updated on November 9, 2015

Each year there are thousands of trade shows or trade exhibits being held across the globe and each for a different industry. These exhibitions are often the best time and place for companies to showcase their products and services as well as study their competitors on what they are currently up to.

Participating in a trade fair can be expensive especially if it’s a major one. However, the benefits often far outweighs the expenses. Check out these top 10 advantages of exhibiting at trade shows:

Now, should you decide to join an expo there are certain things you should do to make it a success. Otherwise you’ll just be spending thousands of your marketing dollars setting up a mediocre booth and standing there waiting for something great to happen.

Here are tips on how you can make the most out of participating in trade shows:

1. Prepare your budget.

Just like with any marketing activity, you should prepare a budget for your trade fair participation. As much as possible it should be detailed and itemized so you know exactly where all of your money is going. There is no hard and fast rule here, it is even important that your budget should be flexible because there might be some unforeseen expenses.

2. Invest in a high quality and attractive booth.

The most important thing that you should focus on is to get people to notice you. So get an expertly designed booth that effectively showcases your brand or products. Make sure your logo and company name are easily identifiable. After all it is your first opportunity to make a really good impression.

3. Strut your new stuff.

This can be done in two ways. The obvious one is you should showcase your latest line of products or services especially the ones you think will get your customers excited. Another is by presenting an old product that you haven’t really promoted or officially launched. Trade shows are the best place to showcase all of your best stuff.

4. Let people touch your products.

Shoppers, even if they are B2B clients, would like to touch a product first before they make any major purchase decision. This is also true in trade exhibits so it is important that your booth layout allows people to see your products up close and personal. Also, it will be to your advantage if you will conduct a demo of your product so people will see exactly how it works.

5. Prepare the logistics.

Do you have the manpower to help you set up your booth? Do you have enough trucks to deliver your products and your marketing displays? That’s because participating in trade shows doesn’t mean you will simply turn up on the day of the event. There are fine details you will have to worry about to ensure everything flows smoothly.

6. Train your staff.

Most trade fair visitors will not only notice the new products they will see, but also remember the experience they have engaging with the people behind the booths. It’s not all about the graphics, you need the right people who can perfectly present your business to others. This means you will need to train your staff so they know how to handle trade shows and especially the inquiries they will be getting from the visitors.

7. Choose trade shows wisely.

As mentioned earlier, it can be expensive joining trade shows so carefully choose the events you will be participating. You don’t have to take part in every trade fair that happens in your business, unless you have a really big marketing budget that will allow you to do it. But chances are your budget is limited so join best exhibitions that you can get into. Most organizers will provide their prospective exhibitors with a profile of their expected visitors as well as the results of their past events. You can use these pieces of information to help you make the right decision.

Now go get noticed!

To guarantee your trade show participation success, you'll need to do a lot of planning. Follow these tips, and not only will you be able to put up a great exhibit, you'll also grow your brand, interact with your target audience, and generate high quality leads.

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