Preparing For Your Company’s First Trade Show

(This is a contributed post)

If you’ve started a new business during the last few months, there is a reasonable chance you focus most of your time on marketing your brand and attempting to reach as many potential customers and clients as possible. While most entrepreneurs do that online these days, it is still possible to make headway in the real world if you’re smart. Trade shows and exhibitions are some of the best events for showcasing your products or services and making deals with other business owners or the general public. Of course, you need to think long and hard about your approach to taking part in those events, and this article should help you to prepare. With that in mind, grab a cup of coffee and spend the next ten minutes reading the information on this page.

Researching suitable events

There are hundreds of trade shows and exhibitions every single year, and so you need to work out which events are most suitable for your brand. The best way to achieve that goal is to search Google for trade shows related to your industry. You can then research each event to learn more about the types of companies that showcase their products or services and how many people bother to purchase tickets. Of course, it doesn’t make sense to travel halfway around the country to take part in a trade show that only welcomes one-hundred people through the door. Once you have a list of suitable exhibitions, it’s time to get in touch with the organisers and make the necessary arrangements. Bear in mind that you will usually have to pay a fee to take part in the event, and the amount will vary from place to place.

Booking your stall

Now you have a list of trade show events for your company; it’s time to begin the process of booking your stall. In most situations, you will have to complete a form that lets the organisers know about your business and what it does to make a profit. You will then get to choose from many different packages depending on how much exposure you want to achieve. Small stalls are not going to break the bank, and they’re perfect for people who are just starting out in the business world. However, it’s also possible to lease more substantial floor space if you want to get a lot of attention and talk to more attendees than you otherwise would have done. Weigh the pros and cons of each deal against the price to work out which is the best option for your company.

Sponsoring the trade show

In some instances, it is possible for your brand to get lots of extra exposure if you choose to become a sponsor of the trade show event. Of course, that is going to require a significant investment, and so you need to make sure you select the best possible event. Let’s presume there is an industry exhibition or conference that all the top firms in your marketplace attend each year. It will make sense to sponsor that event, even if it costs you a few thousand dollars because the organisers will work hard to promote your venue. You will probably notice your logo on all promotional materials, and you might even earn the privilege of giving a talk or something similar. Read all contracts before you sign, and ensure you have enough capital to cover the costs.

Getting stunning banners

You need lots of attractive and eye-catching banners to ensure you attract as many people as possible to your trade show stall. Thankfully, there are thousands of professional design and printing firms out there that will handle all the hard work on your behalf. If you don’t have a graphic designer in-house at the moment; you can outsource the task to specialists to ensure you always get the best results. Ensure the banners and advertising materials contain a clear image of your logo and any essential information about your enterprise. They should also give attendees some necessary information about the types of products or services you supply. That way, you can attract people from a distance, and you should improve the outcomes you manage to secure.

Deciding which employees to take along

There is no getting away from the fact that you will have to take at least a couple of your best employees along to the exhibition event. That is because you won’t have enough time to speak to everyone who stops by your stall. So, you need some workers who understand the ins and outs of your company to converse with those people and ensure they leave with the information they desire. Try to select your most experienced employees, and make sure you put measures in place so your business can continue to trade while you’re out of the office. That isn’t too much of an issue for online ecommerce store owners, but it can cause problems if you rely on your workforce to keep your business going. Maybe you could hire some temporary workers for the day or something similar?

Writing a script

You need to make sure that everyone who stops for a chat at your trade show stall gets most accurate information possible. If your employees make promises they can’t keep or give low estimates, there is a reasonable chance the people you connect with are not going to feel impressed. For that reason, it makes sense to write a script for your team to follow when talking to attendees at the event. Do that at least a couple of weeks before the date, and ensure your employees have enough time to learn all the info. That should help to prevent any issues related to inaccurate quotes, etc. and it will ensure consistency in your approach. If you don’t have the skills to write a script; you could note down any vital points and then employ a freelancer to create the document you require.

Arranging transport

Getting to and from your trade show can become a hassle if you don’t think about transport ahead of time. Your car is not going to have enough space to move the exhibition stand and your banners to the venue. For that reason, you need to put alternative plans in place. Browse here for trailers that will help you to transport the goods or think about hiring a truck for the day. As you are going to take some employees along to the event, it makes sense that you will want to travel together. Leasing a truck or a camper is often the best solution in that instance. Remember that you can put the cost down as an expense on your tax bill at the end of the year, and so you don’t have to stress about your spending too much. In extreme cases, it is possible you might need a lorry, but most companies won’t need to transport that many items.

Producing printed materials

Even with your best team members at hand, there might come a time when someone shows interest in your exhibition stall, but there is nobody free to speak to them. If that happens, it is possible the individual will move elsewhere, and you will miss out on a potential sale. If you want to avoid that situation, take the time to design and print some promotional materials before the event. Flyers, brochures, and posters tend to work well, and they can help to explain the ins and outs of your business and what you can provide to customers and clients. At the very least, anyone who takes a leaflet or flyer should look at the item when they get home or arrive at their hotel room. So, there is still a chance that person will give you a call in the future and begin trading with your brand.

Promoting your attendance

Paying lots of money to attend a trade show is all well and good. However, you might be missing a trick if you don’t tell your customers and clients about the move. While the exhibition organisers will advertise all the companies in attendance; nothing is stopping you from doing the same thing using your social media accounts and mailing lists. Make sure you send emails at least two weeks before the date letting people know you are going to be at the venue. With a bit of luck, that could encourage some of your existing customers and clients to come along. Ask your audience to share the details of the event far and wide so their associates can learn about it too.

You should have no trouble preparing for your company’s first trade show if you use some of the advice from this page. Of course, you also need to employ some common sense and reduce unnecessary spending as much as possible. So, if someone has a van you can use for the day; don’t hire a truck. If you have someone with graphic design skills in your office; don’t pay your printer to come up with the image files. You get the idea, right?

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