The DOS & DON’TS Of Exhibiting
Posted by Tom Oakes
Exhibitions are a great way to showcase your business and build new contacts, but there are certain rules you should follow in order to make the most of the event.
Here are some top dos and don’ts of exhibiting…
Have an objective in mind from attending the exhibition. Do you want to raise awareness of a new product line, or increase your customer base, for instance? Decide what goals you want to achieve, and how you intend to measure these.
Plan ahead and be thoroughly organised before the event takes place. Remember to inform your customers or contacts that you’ll be attending the event, and invite them to come along.
Inject some creativity into your exhibition stands. If there are going to be lots of other exhibitors in attendance, you’ll need to stand out from the crowd, so make your space eye- catching and alluring.
Embrace technology at the event, whether you use iPads to take down contact information, complete short visitor surveys, or showcase products visually. Use social media to provide live updates during the course of the day.
Remember to hand out business cards at the exhibition, and always follow up potential leads a few days afterwards. You could lose new business contacts and opportunities if you don’t bother.
And of course remember that the hard work truly starts with the exhibition stand design, so make sure you fully research the best exhibition stand builders, exhibition stand designers, exhibition stand contractors in the country.
Avoid making assumptions that the exhibition centre will be able to provide you with all the necessary equipment or services you need to showcase your stand. Find out what is available, and what items of equipment you will need to supply yourself.
Don’t skimp on the numbers of staff who will be manning your stand, especially if the exhibition takes place all day long for several days. You’ll want your staff to be alert, enthusiastic and motivated, not worn out by the end of the first day.
Never use aggressive tactics to get someone to visit your stand. If your stand is eye-catching and you appear friendly and informative without being overbearing, the right kinds of visitors will naturally be drawn to your space.
Crucially, don’t make the mistake of not having the right staff to showcase your products. They should be your best brand representatives, so must be trained in your products and fully able to answer questions that attendees ask.
Networking is an important aspect of exhibiting at an event, but don’t just mingle with the visitors. You may find that your neighbouring exhibitors could prove useful to your business, or may offer invaluable insight, even if they might be competitors.
Definitely don’t try and cheap out on the exhibition stand design and build, you could rue that mistake greatly!
Don’t forget to assess the success of your attendance at the event shortly afterwards.
You’ll need to weigh up whether you gained a good return on investment in terms of the cost of attending the event compared to new contacts or business gained.