Organizing and preparing for an optimal trade fair presentation can take an entire year. Registration, stand planning, personnel acquisition and hotel booking all takes a lot of time. Therefore it is best to plan as precisely as possible. The more precise, the better. Within your schedule, it is good to leave room for surprises.
Before working out a creative concept, the goal of attending the upcoming event should be clearly defined. Do you want to raise awareness for your company? Or are you going there just to achieve sales? There are many different company goals. Define your own and base your planning on them.
Of course, it is impossible to control which people will you meet there, but you should have clearly defined the target group you want to focus on. Then you can also better plan which products to highlight.
Your marketing concept
You can communicate your presence at the event early and repeatedly throughout the year. On the other hand, some information and planning measures are only available to your team a few months before the trade fair.
We have eight tips for you to help you implement your advertising measures:
- Inform yourself about the motto and create content
Learn about the motto and special features of the events as early as possible. You often won’t even have to reinvent the wheel, but will be provided with thematic templates that you can use for your own marketing. In addition to designing your stand, you can create a new world of content on your blog, for example. You can already start collecting ideas related to “Trust in You”.
- Prepare your printed materials
Of course, we are all in the digital business and much prefer to send pictures and GIFs via smartphone rather than handing each other flyers. Nevertheless, some physical objects are (still) an integral part of the trade fair business. This includes business cards for quickly exchanging contact information, but also print products such as posters and brochures that can attract attention and support you as advertising material. Think carefully beforehand about what you can really do without and what might still make sense to have in printed form. Also allow enough time for design and printing to avoid making mistakes under stress.
- Extend personal invitations to your customers early on
Whether by letter, phone, email or even WhatsApp, you should inform your customers in good time when and where you can be found. For larger trade fair appearances, it makes sense to create your own landing page. This can be used to summarize all the important information and provide a form for scheduling meetings. If you do it right, you will also optimize the landing page for search engines so it can be found more easily by visitors seeking to inform themselves about the trade fair in advance. To attract attention, you can use the event logo or place your profile picture in a frame, for example. DMEXCO even offers you an invitation management service for this purpose: the Personal Prospect Invitation Program.
- Use social media
Use your own channels to draw attention to your trade fair presence. You can start as soon as you have booked your stand and have initial information at your disposal. Later on you can link to your landing page and/or document and share your trade fair preparation measures with pictures and videos. In addition to your own channels, use communities such as groups on Facebook or LinkedIn to reach people, who may not yet be your existing customers. You can also consider using paid ads in social media just before your visit to the trade fair. Also link to event’s social media channels, e.g. DMEXCO’s Facebook channel to achieve even more reach!
- Organize catering and unique features for your stand
Have the best coffee, the coolest popcorn machine or the biggest wheel of fortune. If you manage to get trade fair visitors so enthusiastic about your stand that they tell others about it, then that’s probably the best advertising for you. This not only attracts a lot of visitors to your stand, but you can also collect images and video material for your social media channels at the same time. The more you present yourself in an eye-catching way, the more contact opportunities you will have. But be careful not to overdo it! Focus should remain on the quality of your product or service. You should also have clarified your advertising measures with the organizer team in advance.
- Motivate your team
“Employees are your best brand ambassadors“, Tobias wrote in his story. This is one of the reasons why it is important to have a team at your stand that not only possesses the know-how, but knows how to have fun and stay motivated. Providing them with a detailed briefing on the respective responsibilities and corporate objectives is essential in this regard. Ideally, you should also have a small back-office team to assist you with larger inquiries or urgent matters. It is important that the entire team is involved and informed about the distribution of tasks. Prepare yourself and your team (both on site and elsewhere) well to guarantee an impressive presence.
- Get oriented
Maybe you’ve been to the trade fair site a dozen times and know your way around. But maybe this is your first time. If so, you should get oriented before the days of the event. Clarify in advance where you need to go and which entrance you can use to set up your stand. To work as efficiently as possible, create a timetable in advance to define when you want to have everything done. Your team will also be thankful for well-structured planning. Inform yourself and your colleagues about opening hours and working hours, plan the routes to the hotel and reserve taxis if needed. Get a map of the site and a schedule of the event. Then you will be able to answer questions from visitors and prepare yourself for both calm and stressful phases at the stand. You can download “Essential Information in Brief” and other important documents for orientation at DMEXCO free of charge here.
- Derive your own learnings
Before all the planning for the next event begins, you should also concentrate on follow-up. It is especially important to follow up with all the contacts you met at the trade fair and put what you discussed into practice. Also think about what you learned at the event. What worked and what didn’t? Which printed matter did you really need and which giveaways were most popular? Ultimately, you should be able to say what you could do better at the next event. Even if it costs you a lot of time, this can be the key to gaining trust and even attracting new customers.
The bottom line
With a well-structured concept and a clear goal in mind, a trade fair appearance is the ideal way to reconnect with existing contacts, make new ones and drive your company’s success. As is often the case, it is important for marketing and sales to work closely together, while promoting creativity and new ideas. Don’t think of your trade fair appearance as a two-day event, but as a year-round project. Then nothing can stand in the way of your success.