Some team members from LoSasso recently traveled to Indianapolis for the annual CNH Parts & Service Expo to support our client and connect with the members of the agriculture and construction communities. Shows like this—both internal and industry-wide—present a unique chance for companies to showcase products and connect with customers, suppliers, distribution networks and other partners. In the recent issue of Composites Manufacturing, Todd Hockenberry points out five steps to trade show success:
1. Set specific goals: Strategize based on your business goals, and make sure these goals are specific and measurable. Measurable goals are important because they help in planning future goals and tracking attendance and results. Furthermore, develop a persona, or an ideal client that you would like to target at the show. Persona development requires outward focus rather than inward.
2. Create an offer: Don’t just set up a booth and hope for engagement and attendance. Develop a “can’t miss” presentation, demonstration or interesting value. By focusing your message, attendees will be compelled to take action.
3. Publicize the offer to drive traffic: Understand the show’s relevant social media hashtags and use them. Develop your own hashtags to promote and connect to attendees, and use Facebook and LinkedIn to post updates. Harnessing social media is a great way to set up your booth for success.
4. Convert visits to leads: Make handouts and giveaways website-friendly by adding QR codes that lead to relevant landing pages to convert visitors to leads after the show is over.
5. Follow up and turn leads into customers: Do not let leads go stagnant. Follow up aggressively on all leads. Don’t just send emails—call everyone. Continue to promote your trade show offer after the show using your blog, social media and email campaigns.
The day you pack up a trade show is not the end of the show. It is just the beginning. Companies that understand the importance of trade shows will consistently generate a high return on those investments.