5 Things to Consider When Deciding to Exhibit at an Event
Deciding to exhibit at an event can be an extremely costly and time consuming decision, therefore it is advisable that before paying for your stand space or stand build that you put aside some focused time to consider a number of crucial elements.
1) Define the main purpose for exhibiting
The first thing to consider is who the exhibition is for and what outcome you are hoping to achieve. By clearly defining your target market and what goals you want to achieve will assist you in making additional decisions. These included deciding upon the format of the exhibition, the budget you will allocate, location, theme etc. By having clear goals it will ensure that you stay focused on your aims and ultimately will achieve return on investment.
Ask yourself if the main purpose for your presence is for lead generation, to launch a new product/service, create customer loyalty or to even compete with your competition. Once you have decided on the main purpose ensure that the rest of your team are clear on the end goals too and ensure that they are SMART!
2) Develop an exhibition schedule
Never underestimate the amount of things that you will need to do before, during and after exhibiting. Once you have decided on the outline of your exhibition stand it is then beneficial to make a list of everything that you will need to undertake from organising the stand design, to the build, connecting the relevant utilities, organising WIFI connection to getting the stand cleaned every day to who will be working at the event.
Some exhibitions can take up to 12 months to plan and execute. Those that are held at major venues such as the NEC, Earls Court and Olympia have very strict deadlines and procedures that have to be adhered to. These include ensuring that you have all your Health & Safety documentation and insurance policies in place, contractor passes are requested to booking the time slot for your equipment to be delivered.
3) Create a robust Marketing Plan
Unfortunately it is unlikely that a ‘if you build it, they will come’ scenario will occur therefore it is of paramount importance that you create a detailed marketing plan in order to attract your target audience. This needs to define what you will be doing that will attract target attendees to your stand. This could include an exclusive product demonstration, freebies, competition, show discounts or an expert speaker. Whatever you decide upon ensure that it will bring the crowds to you.
Once you decide upon the incentive to pull your target audience in, be sure to communicate it effectively via the media, social media, website, advertising material, direct mailing, video, bloggers and even consider a pre-event registration to obtain additional discounts, hospitality or a goodie bag.
4) Identify who needs to be involved
Regardless of how long the exhibition is being held for you will ultimately need some assistance with the preparation, supervising the stand and following up on the leads generated. Ensure that duties are delegated to specific individuals who possess exceptional organisational skills and attention to detail.
Due to the complexities of exhibiting it is beneficial to have a Project Manager who heads up the team to ensure that all the necessary deadlines are met and nothing is overlooked.
5) Dress to impress
Not everyone possesses the right personality or image to work on an exhibition stand so be selective in choosing your team. A positive and outgoing attitude will go a long way in bringing people onto your stand, but be careful not to become to ‘sales’ focused as no one like to be ‘sold too’.
Ensure that all your stand staff are wearing garments that clearly show your brand and that there is consistency in the colours and style. Remember first impressions count and therefore if your visitors are met by your stand staff with a smile, and wearing smart and clearly recognisable attire it will create both a friendly and professional image for your company.
There is a lot to consider but by leaving yourself as much time as possible, the chance of achieving your exhibition goals are more likely. At ACE Embroidery Limited we understand that the most importance brand is yours and that’s why we will ensure that your corporate promotional goods and garments will promote you and your company in a professional manner.
Posted by Mathew Smart on 09-Mar-2017
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