9 quick tips on getting more out of your exhibition stand:
1. Promote the expo to your customers
Make sure your customers are coming to the event.This is a very effective way to meet your customers, get feedback, promote new services or products, and grow your business.
2. Book early and start planning
It’s easy book an expo and forget about it, or book late. Then there’s the last minute rush (stress) to get organised. Book early, set up a file for the expo, and start planning.
3. Set objectives
A. Practitioners and readers
If you do consultations and also run courses consider how your time is best spent. What is more beneficial in the long term? For example some offer short sample consults to demonstrate the quality of their work to interested potential students and mostly focus on course bookings.
B. Product vendors
Have a chat with your sales and marketing people and set some objectives. They should be objective and realistic. They might include generating a specific number of leads, meetings, sales or samples. Perhaps you are looking for a distributor or seeking media attention. Consider your key priorities and make a plan.
4. Promote the expo beforehand
Body & Soul Holistic Expos will advertise and run a Facebook promotion campaign to attract people to the expo. However research suggests there is a huge advantage for exhibitors who promote their own presence at the expo. It helps to generate stand traffic and demonstrate your commitment. Consider sending a personal email to all your current and potential clients. Provide links on your website and social media sites. Include a note on your invoices.
Remember also that it is part of your agreement with Body & Soul Holistic Expos that you promote the expo. This is a partnership in which everyone should benefit.
5. Train your team
If you are bringing people with you to assist at your stand spend some time with them beforehand – a little bit of training can make a big difference. Talk about your objectives, talk about the products or services you are promoting, and suggest some good ways to start and end conversations with buyers. The main points can be reinforced with a brief meeting each morning of the show.
6. Motivate your team
Working at an expo can be hard work. Motivate your team by offering rewards for meeting objectives.
7. Be professional
You are literally on show. You don’t have to have a big stand but you must be professional. Make sure your display is neat and your people are well dressed and attentive. If you have posters then frame or mount them. Try not to eat or socialise on the stand.
If you encounter difficult people or negative attitudes it is the way you respond that demonstrates your professionalism. Remember to smile!
8. Listen carefully to people’s needs
Sometimes exhibitors are so eager to get their message across that they fail to hear what the customer is saying. Most customers have a need they want to be fulfilled. It is very important to clarify this need, assist if you can, or alternatively refer then to someone who is better equipped to help the customer. The customer’s needs are a priority and must come first. In my experience referring customers is excellent for networking and the favour is often reciprocated.
9. Be obvious
Visitors only take a moment to walk past your stand. Make it obvious what you do. A well presented display is important. Keep your message obvious and simple. If you want a distributor or have a new product put up a sign that says ‘distributor wanted’ or ‘new product’.