Self-Inflicted Spotlight: Taking Trade Shows Seriously

light showSurprisingly, even with online business being the most popular, trade shows seem to be becoming more popular than ever before. With events like this being reserved for select clients in the past, becoming more accessible has had a huge positive impact on this area, and the doors have opened for businesses looking for new ways to make some money. Of course, though, attending an event like this is much more than setting up a stall and having fun for the day. Instead, to be successful in a place like this, you have to be the very best.

Achieving a goal like this is going to take a lot of work. Along the way, you’re going to need to do loads of research, and may even have to fight for your position at the shows you like. Once you start seeing new customers pour in, though, this effort will all be worth it, and most people will be very satisfied with the time they’ve spent.

The Preparation

Attending an event like this will take a lot more than couple of days of work to make sure everything is arranged. Even down to carpet for your booth, there will be loads of different things which need to be prepared before you can attend an event. Below, you can find a list of these areas, along with some of the ways to make it unique to your business.

  • A Stall: Before you can start to plan the event, you’ll need to make sure that your business will be able to attend, and this will mean looking for a chance to buy a slot on the show floor. For the biggest events, these will sell out very quickly, forcing you to keep your eyes open for a long time. Of course, though, the less popular ones will be much easier to book into.
  • Furniture: With your stall chosen, you will be ready to start thinking about how you’re going to furnish it. In most cases, people will aim to have this reflect their business or product. For example, for a modern smartphone, it would make sense to use minimal and newly designed options.
  • Materials: Along with furniture, most businesses will have plenty of reading materials set around for their visitors to read. This sort of documentation should always be focused on the products or services you’re pushing on the day, as this will help people to remember what your stall was about. Anything like this needs to be made with quality and memorability in mind.
  • The Logistics: It’s unlikely that your business is located right next to the trade show location, and this will mean that you have some traveling to do before you get there. Transporting your booth will be a lot of work, usually requiring several people to get it done successfully, and will have to be planned before the big day.

The Little Touches

At events like these, you will often find one or two stalls stealing the show and making everyone else’s offerings look tame. Of course, in most cases, this won’t be achieved through products alone, and will also take a good deal of work on your part. Having a feature which makes your booth more memorable is a great way to find yourself the talk of the trade show. A portable bar, for example, would give you the power to give away drinks to potential customers, creating a welcoming environment to introduce yourself in. This is a great way to make people happy before you even start talking to them.

Of course, though, there are loads of ways to make a booth unique, and you need to know the crucial factor which makes the difference for businesses; freebies. Everyone loves to get something for free, giving you the perfect chance to make yourself look good, and it doesn’t have to cost a fortune in the process. Options like custom printed pens and badges are very cheap when bought in bulk. This makes it incredibly worthwhile to spend some money on your event, even if you don’t get it back right away.

The Staff

You won’t be able to run a stall like this all by yourself. On the day of the event, you could find yourself overwhelmed by the amount of people interested in your work, and will need some help to talk to everyone. The best candidates for this sort of job are people you already employ, if there are any, as they will know a lot about your products already. If you do need to hire people for the day, though, it will be very useful to give them some training before they get started. This will ensure that everything is handled smoothly, and that visitors will be able to get the information they need.

The Set Up

With your employees in order, you will be ready to start considering the set up you’re going to have to do when you get to the show. In most cases, people have a couple of weeks to prepare for this, and you will have access to the show floor nice and early. Of course, though, this will only make things easier if you can make use of it. A comprehensive plan will be very helpful here, giving you the ability to keep your mind on what’s important at the event. Along with this, though, a practice run or two might not hurt, especially if you’ve never built a booth before.

During The Event

It will be easy to tell if you’ve been successful with your planning the moment the show doors open. With any luck, you will have people flocking to your stall, and will have loads on your plate to deal with. Of course, though, looking after customers isn’t your only job here, creating a need for some balance in what you’re doing. Thankfully, your employees will often be able to handle some of this work, and you won’t be left with all of it.

  • Look After Customers: Of course, most importantly, your main job at an event like this will be keeping your potential customers happy. Providing them with the information they need will be a great step towards achieving this, but you’ll need to think a little bigger. A lot of businesses use this opportunity to show just how customer focused they are.
  • Protect The Goods: While it’s unlikely that you will have taken loads of products with you to your event, a lot of businesses will have a good amount of value with them during a trade show. Computers, TVs, and other media equipment will all need to be protected. Being on the floor all day gives you a great chance to do this, ensuring that everything is as secure as can be. It’s amazing what people will try to take when they have the chance.
  • Impress Everyone: Finally, as the last job you have, impressing everyone around you will be no mean feat. With each person that goes by, though, you have a potential customer, client, or investor who won’t part with their money easily. People come to events like these to find places to spend their money. If you’re able to catch their eye, taking your slice could be a simple matter of being in the right place at the right time.

After The Fact

Once the show is over, you’ll no doubt want to have a bit of a rest. Unfortunately, though, you still have some work to do. During the trade show, you will have had loads of chances to generate leads and get people’s contact details. With this list in front of you, one of your most important jobs will involve getting back to everyone. Whether you use emails or phone calls to do this, it will be essential that it is done in good time, or people will have forgotten about the offerings you have shown them.

Along with getting in contact with potential leads, you may also have to do some work to deal with the increased interest in your business. Going to an event like this without first preparing your business to deal with the workload it could bring will be a very big mistake. Instead, you should be going to the show with a target in mind, and have the capacity to produce even more if you need to. Having this in place will increase your chances of serving everyone. Of course, though, it’s not worth sacrificing things like quality to get jobs done faster.

Hopefully, with all of this in mind, it should be a lot easier to start looking into the work you’ll have to do if you want to attend a trade show. With these sorts of events becoming more popular, it makes sense for small companies to attend as many as they can. While it will be expensive, having a day like this can give your business a huge boost. Whether you have a new product on the way or simply want to show off what you’ve got, a trade show is the perfect place for it.

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