Top 10 Tips to maximise your success at an Exhibition or Show

  1. Set measurable objectives at the outset. What do you hope to achieve by doing the exhibition / show?
  2. It’s worth (e)mailing customers and prospects to tell them you are at the exhibition / show and to invite them to join you (risk free strategy if you are the only company selling your particular product or service there).
  3.  Make the most of every opportunity to create a good impression with everyone who visits your stand. Have you got a reason for them to stay long enough for you to go up to them and have a chat? Is there anything interactive you could do?
  4. Prize draws are a good way to collect business cards which can help build your database, but you need to remember that not everyone who puts their business card in your box will be relevant. Worth a go though as the prize doesn’t need to be really expensive.
  5. Lots of companies give away bags at an exhibition. Low cost and some exposure on the day. People are unlikely to keep them after the event (unless they are ‘bags for life’ or canvas for example), but if you give enough away it will keep your company name bobbing around the exhibition!
  6. Prepare a stand rota and train staff on how you want them to approach visitors. Make sure they are not all standing talking to each other in a huddle at the back. Upfront handing out leaflets / bags / promotional items or inviting people to put cards into the prize draw is much better. Get them all to memorise the BENEFITS of using your company. Ask them to find out if the visitor they are speaking to is a decision maker or influencer in the purchase of your product or service.
  7. Take some ‘lead forms’. Some nicely printed paperwork where staff can record details of conversations with potential leads etc. Make sure you have plenty of pens.
  8. On the practical side, have an exhibition kit / folder. Keep everything to hand relating to the exhibition. Booking info, supplier info, hotels, stand rota etc. Take scissors, staples, tape, clipboards and so on.
  9. After the event – follow up! If you’ve promised things to people, do it. Put all new contacts in your database and keep in touch with them (giving them the option of opting out if you do it by email).
  10. Finally, once everything is done, analyse whether the event was a success. Did you meet your objectives? What went well / not so well? Did you spot anything good on another stand that you might like to do next time? Would you exhibit there again?