Whether you’re a newbie exhibitor or a seasoned pro, you’ll know that visitors have pretty fixed expectations of what your booth will deliver. Free pens? Check. Smiling, chatty staff? Check. Branded literature? Check.
So the smart thing to do is give them what they want, and at the same time ensure you get what you need. It may seem like an impossible task given the existing formula but worry not. Rather than reinventing the wheel, it’s just about giving the wheel a new shiny tyre. Aim to ensure your exhibition booth, with all its bells and whistles, is the perfect extension of your brand.The best place to start is with the foundations. Prop up your site with a couple of well-placed, eye-catching roller banners and you’re well on your way.
But how else can you make your pop up booth, or exhibition stand, stand out from the rest?
You know the sinking feeling. You’re in a shop, having a mooch, and you spot an approaching salesperson. Humphhh. Nine times out of ten you consider scarpering; you just don’t want to get trapped.
Same rules apply at events. It’s great if your team are inviting and friendly but they mustn’t pounce the second they’ve got someone engaged in conversation. Rather than cornering a visitor, make them feel at ease, keep them chatting and you’re more likely to hold their attention and hopefully secure their email address or Twitter handle. And play on your team’s strengths. If you have a performer in the ranks, encourage them to put on a bit of a show. Equally, if a visitor seems a little timid, leave them to the skills of the staff member who’s an excellent listener.
Marketing materials matter
In the same way that first impressions count, everything your visitors come into contact with should pack a punch.
Ensure your literature and posters are clear and accurate. Well before your event, scan all your materials for mistakes and ensure your contact information is up-to-date and easily accessible. If they’re not up to scratch, get new, top notch leaflets or brochures printed as a priority. The same goes for roller banners. There are a huge number of roller banner designs, and nailing your pop up banner is a simple yet effective way of attracting attention without spending a fortune.
You want to be selling yourself before punters even reach your stand, so a highly visual pull up banner is an ideal way to promote your name, logo and USP from a distance. You stick in people’s heads and entice them over. Selling yourself without appearing to try too hard? It’s a no brainer, surely.
Remember to tap into the powerful world of technology. Live tweeting from an event is a great way to interact with visitors, and do remember to use the event hashtag to maximise your reach. A tweet showing your slick exhibition stand lets your online followers know where you are and what you’re up to. Those 140 characters supercharge the potential of your popup stand. Really nifty.
Just give me the freebies …
When it comes to exhibitions, visitors often plan to leave with as many freebies as possible. People love free stuff. But it’s important that you avoid wasting money on irrelevant gimmicks; be sure that any merchandise deserves a place at the table.
While a branded pen is almost a must-have, a logoed fidget spinner is possibly a step too far. Unless you’re in the fidget spinner market! If you have a specialty, then find a clever way of demonstrating it. You produce bespoke greetings cards? Then showcase your products by giving them away.
People will always warm to free food and drinks. The smell of proper good coffee or a freshly baked cookie will be nectar to the nostrils of customers bored of slightly sticky boiled sweets and watery tea. Harness the power of the senses. A brimming bowl of chocolates doesn’t cost much and is always a surefire hit.
It’s not about size; it’s what you do with it
Your exhibition stand doesn’t need to be the biggest or the most expensive, provided it does its job effectively. You can stack the odds in your favour with a great location - it can be worth liaising with the organisers a few weeks before the event to secure a top setting for a not-too-top price. Corner plots or being near the café are a great bet, while avoiding the loo is recommended.
Once you’ve nailed the perfect spot, use the space wisely. A couple of well-placed roller banners are a perfect canvas to advertise your business without taking up too much room. A great thing about a good quality pull up banner is that you can use it time and time again. And with clever lighting, your roll up banners can shine. Avoid overdressing your exhibition. Keep your display classy and simple and let the pop up stand do the talking. Less is more.
After you’ve smashed the event, get any new relationships off on the right foot. Follow up as soon as possible with a welcome email and a call to action. Make it as easy as possible for your new contacts to get in touch. Reassure them of your ability and remind them why they should do business with you. And if you made any specific promises to customers – sending over some relevant literature or a glowing case study, for example – make sure this is done as a priority.Sum up your exhibition success on all of your socials and open up the floor for discussions.
Planning is key
Attending an exhibition can be a cost-effective way of rubbing shoulders with existing customers and making new contacts too. Key to squeezing value out of attending such events is careful planning, leaving yourself plenty of time to get all the elements right. If you would like to share your event ideas with our experts, we’re always pleased to hear from you. And if you’re after advice on the content or style of roller banners, get in touch with us online or by phone 023 8070 0111.