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  • Jun 02, 2023
  • Write by Author Name
  • Jun 02, 2023

Tips to Maximize Your Trade Show Investment

Trade shows are prime opportunities for businesses to achieve their goals. They bring brands face-to-face with their customers, provide a glimpse of the competition, and bring in new sales. There are an estimated 13,000 trade shows held across the United States every year! That’s a lot of chances to find new customers and grow your business. Investing in trade show exhibits can improve a brand’s reputation and market position.

Setting up a trade show booth can be beneficial, but only if you know how to maximize your investment. It costs money to rent exhibition space, invest in booth design, prepare a marketing strategy, and convert leads from a trade show exhibit into actual sales. Backed by the right strategy, trade show booths are worth every dollar. 

Here’s why. 

Benefits of Attending Trade Shows

Every brand’s marketing strategy should include trade shows. It allows brands to achieve business goals and sales targets at the same time. Participating in a trade show will enable you to:

  • Promote your product to a wider market
  • Reach your target audience directly
  • Create brand awareness among consumers
  • Build and develop business relationships
  • Create new leads to convert into sales
  • Identify new marketing opportunities

What Do Trade Show Displays Cost?

Successful trade show exhibits can be judged on two factors: Return on Investment (ROI) and Return on Objectives (ROO). ROI can be measured by sales made at the trade show and from leads generated there. ROO is tied to the goals you set for your team at the trade show, like contacting new customers or performing product demonstrations.

To maximize ROI for trade shows, companies need a smart budget. The factors associated with calculating the budget for a trade show display are:

  • Booth Space: Real estate is at a premium at trade shows. It pays to be familiar with the trade show venue beforehand. Trade show veterans know that renting a spot with high foot traffic is more expensive but brings better opportunities during the event.
  • Employee Expenses: A trade booth needs to be manned to be most effective. Sending a team to participate in trade shows incurs travel and lodging costs. And it’s always better to send a team rather than a single representative because the trade show floor can be a hectic place!
  • Event Booth Design: An eye-catching booth is a must-have for trade show displays. A custom booth design makes your company stand out. Brands with an eye-catching show exhibit will attract more visitors to their booths.
  • Giveaways: You want to give trade show visitors something to remember your brand by. Swag has been a part of trade show culture for decades. Create fun mementos for customers that remind them of your brand.
  • Shipping: You can’t put on a trade show exhibit without anything to display! Invest in a quality shipping solution to transport your assets to the venue. In a trade show budget, your product shipping costs are as important as your employee travel expenses.

How to Maximize ROI For Trade Shows

While participating in trade shows can seem like a major investment, they can potentially bring in even greater returns. Preparing an effective strategy to optimize your ROI for trade shows is an ongoing activity. It is not something that can be taken up in the weeks before an event and then abandoned until the next one. Brand marketing teams should get in a huddle and decide on an end-to-end strategy for trade show participation to maximize ROI. Here’s how! 

Pre-Show Preparation

Set Goals

Have a clear strategy before the trade show begins. Make sure that every member going to the event understands what their roles and goals are. Have account managers contact their clients and extend invitations to your exhibit.

Work With the Event Organizers

After registering for an event, reach out to the organizers to explore further opportunities. Register on the event app if there is one, and connect with fellow attendees. Promote the event and your participation on your brand’s social media channels. 

On-site Activities

Network, Network, Network!

Striking up a dialogue with future customers or partners is why brands send reps to trade shows. Ensure your team is not spending all their time at their booth. Encourage employees to walk the event floor and make new contacts.

Choose the Best Location

Setting up your booth in a forgotten corner of the venue is a recipe for failure. Registering early and connecting with the organizers can help your brand bag a prime spot for your trade show booth. Work with a reputed booth design company to draw foot traffic to your stall.

Send Your Best

Employees at a trade show are the face of your brand. When choosing a team for the trade show, ensure you pick members who are well-informed, approachable, and social. Visitors will remember your trade show booth if they have memorable interactions with the people working there.

Use the Right Tools

Arrive at the trade show prepared for the day. Choose the right Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software to gather feedback and compile information from visitors. Make sure the giveaways from your stall are relevant and on-brand.

Mosesley at NAB

Converting Trade Show Investment into Returns

Calculating ROI immediately after a trade show is complex. But as the leads from the event are converted into sales over the coming sales cycle, the picture starts to become clearer. To achieve sales targets, brands should diligently digitize all data recorded at trade shows and ensure their sales teams follow up with prospective leads.

Reports show that 82% of trade show attendees have purchasing power in their organizations. They represent an eager and informed audience. To tap into this potential market, brands need to have a smart strategy before, during, and after the trade show. Trade shows can become a source of significant returns for brands willing to commit the resources and put in the preparation. A clear plan, brilliant booth design, and robust follow-ups can maximize a brand’s ROI for trade shows.

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