Several of my clients attend business exhibitions to build their visibility with the public and with businesses. To properly exploit this great opportunity to exhibit their goods and services, they find they need to plan and train for the day:
Attract visitors’ attention
- Plan what you will offer at the exhibition and design your posters, handouts and information packs, to support that message.
- Email your clients beforehand, inviting them to visit you at the exhibition.
- Make the stand look interesting. You have just 30 seconds to catch people’s interest, so use colour and movement and make posters easy to read (A3 size with 24 point fonts).
Be available to visitors
- Avoid eating on the stand – people will not interrupt if they think you are lunching, so agree cover for your meal breaks.
- Avoid chatting among yourselves – if you are not available, visitors will not interrupt, they will just walk away.
- Do not use your mobile phone on the stand: switch it to voicemail beforehand.
- Wear comfortable shoes! If your feet hurt, you cannot concentrate.
Serve your visitors effectively
- Do not pounce on visitors, give people a chance to look, then approach them with a smile.
- Be welcoming and interested to visitors: ask their name and interests – take an email address so you can follow up later.
- Ensure a knowledgeable person is always on the stand to answer your visitor’s questions authoritatively – and note the conversation for a later follow-up.
- Remember to follow up leads after the show, add your visitors to your monthly emailed newsletter, and post out the information packs that you promised.
I encourage all my small business clients to measure their marketing effort – what did it cost and what benefits resulted? By preparing for an exhibition properly, you can ensure that you maximise the return you get from each event.
Adrian Pepper coaches people through business and personal difficulties, helping companies figure out what to do, how to move forward and what to get organised. You can contact him through Help4You Ltd , through his website at http://www.help4you.ltd.uk or by phone +44-7773-380133. At http://feeds.feedburner.com/help4you , you can listen to his podcast for small businesses.