Going to Exhibitions Outside of your Trade – What are the Benefits?

Going to Exhibitions Outside of your Trade – What are the Benefits?

Exhibitions can have many benefits when you’re attending those in your industry.

They’re great for selling and making connections within your own industry, but did you know there are also many benefits for going to exhibitions that are outside of your industry?

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Guide to Exhibiting in Larger Venues

Guide to Exhibiting in Larger Venues

Exhibiting at a large venue can give your business great exposure and be beneficial for brand awareness for your business.

But, as with every new business venture there are risks involved, so you must ensure you’re well prepared to cope with the hurdles you may need to overcome at a larger venue.

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Exhibition Show Trends for 2019

Exhibition Show Trends for 2019

With the year drawing to a close, it is only necessary to predict and dissect what trends will be coming up in regards to exhibition shows in 2019.

To stay on top of the game and make a stand an attention grabber in an exhibition full of new tech and innovative ideas, take a look at our breakdown of the top exhibition trends to note in 2019.

Selfie Walls

Social media is still in its prime when it comes to marketing and trade shows. It’s a great place to share photos, create social media content for your own brand and attract a range of visitors to your stand.

Selfie walls are a great addition to a stand – passers-by will love the opportunity to pose for a photo in a designated and attractive space, while businesses can benefit from the exposure online, especially if you ensure your wall has some kind of branding on it!

You could even run a social media competition with a selfie upload tagging your business as their entry – people love incentives and it guarantees exposure for you.

Bring funny props or create an amazing background – there is so much you can do with this idea!

AR and VR

  • Augmented Reality (AR) – the ability to merge our own lives with the digital world is a tactic to be harnessed for 2019. Whether it’s used in the most professional form, for example scanning a barcode and an AR business card is presented, or in a fun and interactive form such as an AR treasure hunt through various stands, AR has the ability to completely redesign the way we interact with exhibitions and the stands within them.
  • Virtual Reality (VR) – the integration of VR in an exhibition show could completely transform the space within which a stand resides. VR promises to take people to other places and creates a unique and dynamic presentation. Take an interior design company – tell someone to come back in half an hour and they could have designed their perfect bedroom – and transported them right into it. The possibilities for VR are endless and its power to transport attendees outside of the conference hall is unrivalled.

Multi-Sensory Exhibits

Exhibitors usually rely heavily on sight and don’t take a second thought to all of our other senses. Well, they could be missing out on a trick here…

It’s all very well having a beautiful stand, but if it doesn’t suit a business’s product or goals it might not have the intended impact.

If someone trades as a business in the food industry it may be wiser to focus heavily on smell and taste – offering free samples to attendees for example.

Electronics companies promoting their new headphones may wish to rely heavily on sound – for example creating everyone who purchases on the day a personalised playlist to listen to with their new gadget.

Of course, every exhibition differs in their regulations for sound limits and stand sizes, but there is always a creative way to play to the overlooked senses to draw people to the stand.

Stand Design

It is thought that in 2019, instead of the flashy graphics and bright lights attracting people to stands, the focus will be more on the customer experience. It’s all very well bringing people to a stand, but if there’s nothing to make them stay, it can equal a lost sale.

Cease thinking in terms of demo stations and square footage and reinvent stand designs to be intuitive and facilitate the common goal – showing the value of a product or service to the customer.

Engagement and interaction enhance the experience for the customer and impact attendees. It’s also important to remember to make stand spaces inviting and relaxing – attendees are on their feet all day and a place to relax may appeal to people more than expected.

With that in mind, it’s time to start planning for any 2019 exhibitions you think would suit your business. For help deciding on or designing your perfect stand to wow the crowds and stay on top of trends in the new year, contact us at 200m2 today.

What you need to know if you’re attending an overseas exhibition

What you need to know if you’re attending an overseas exhibition

Exhibiting at overseas events can be a great way to promote your products and generate international awareness about what you do. The exposure to the broader audience overseas exhibitions give can be essential in breaking into foreign markets and securing export business.

As with any trade show, there are opportunities for issues to arise, but more so with exhibiting abroad due to quite often heavy expense and long distances they involve.

For some though, this slight risk is worth the huge potential reward. So, what do you need to know about attending an overseas exhibition to produce great results?

Proper Planning

Before you begin to plan your stand or journey, you must assess whether the venture and cost of your trip will mean success for your business.

There is no point in spending thousands of pounds to attend an exhibition to only find out it was unsuitable for your business and gain a few hundred pounds in revenue from unqualified leads.

Do your research and ensure that the event not only looks ideal for your business, but really is. Contact the organisers and request floor plans, visitor demographics, and exhibitor and speaker details to really assess whether the clientele could become assets to your business and will become invaluable contacts to you later on.

It may even be a wise decision, if circumstances allow, to register and attend other exhibitions abroad to simply assess the conditions – make connections to help you when you exhibit, see how the competitors measure up, and discover innovative ways to make your marketing stand out.

Preparation checklist

The preparation for an exhibition is not done overnight. You’ll want to be planning almost a year in advance in order to stand the best chance at having your exhibit run smoothly.

  • 6-12 months before – do your research and look at funding options.
  • 5-6 months before – book your space (try and get the best space you can!) and begin promoting your appearance at the event.
  • 4-5 months before – book your transport and hotels, and make sure your marketing materials are ready (print, freebies etc).
  • 3 months before – have your vaccinations and check travels documents (passports etc). Read the exhibitors manual and familiarise yourself with any pending deadlines.
  • 2 months before – plan the layout of your stand and ensure you have all the necessary equipment like lighting. Consider and finalise your equipment transportation options (freight, shipping options and delivery etc).
  • 1 month before – ensure you have a list of price conversions for your services as you’re selling in a country with potentially a different currency. Organise your finance for your trip and ensure you have changed currency. Create a packing list and gather equipment.
  • 2 weeks before – Ensure you have all necessary documentation like travel documents and exhibitor passes.
  • 1 week before – double check arrangements and pack your suitcase. Research any cultural considerations and implications and make sure you know this in order to make a good and respectful first impression.

Access and support

If you know a particular show would do wonders for your business but you simply can’t afford it, there are services available to help make this opportunity accessible for you.

The UK government’s Trade Access Programme (TAP) provides funding for those businesses, covering some of the costs of exhibiting at overseas trade shows.

The Department for International Trade (DIT) partners with TAP to confirm a number of shows annually that would provide good business for UK companies and the support from these two organisations allows the grants to be put in place.

The grants available can be anywhere between £500-£2500 provided they do not exceed the business’s own expenditure on things like exhibition space costs and stand costs.

If cost is an issue and this money needs to be allocated to other resources, remember there are always alternatives to the recommended guidelines that could save you money elsewhere.

Consider hiring someone to ship stands to your exhibition rather than renting one there – this can work out a lot cheaper than most people expect.

It is crucial to plan changes like this in advance to help your overseas exhibiting make an impact and stand the best chance of gaining a positive response. Choosing the right exhibition methods for each show will help attract people to your stand and make overseas exhibiting worth it for you.

To browse our range of stands, sort your printing or outsource your exhibition management, visit our website and get in touch today.

Top Tips for Exhibition Networking

Top Tips for Exhibition Networking

Exhibitions are a great place to start networking with likeminded individuals and with people who are looking for your services. But, even the best of us can get a few networking nerves, especially when you’re in a hall full of people.

So, here are a few top tips to make you a networking pro at your next exhibition.

Business Cards

They have been around for hundreds of years, and they aren’t going anywhere, these little cards are the backbone to networking, they make the whole process worthwhile.

Make an impact with an amazing design but remember to try and tell your company’s story through this card. This card will be the face for your business when everyone goes back to their offices; you want to make them want to get in touch with you.

If you want to make the process of someone getting hold of you easier, you could use a barcode which when scanned will input your contact details.

However, if you do decide to take this approach, include a written version of contact details as well.

Possibly the most important thing to remember with business cards is to have enough of them!

Interesting Questions and Memorable Answers

Don’t get caught in the trap of asking mundane, repetitive questions with boring answers. These are going to make you forgettable.

Researching who will be at the exhibition before the event allows you to find out about what their business is and come up with relevant and interesting questions about their industry or job role.

In return, you do not want to give boring and generic answers – you want to stand out! So, it is always best that you have a few answers stored for the typical questions you receive at a networking event. Think of fun or interesting answers to these.

Body Language

Body language will get you far when it comes to networking, and even if you’re terrified, if you look relaxed everyone will think that you are.

Think confident and relaxed, emitting this kind of body language will, in turn, make your companion relax in your company as well allowing for some great networking to take place!

Remember always to smile and shake everyone’s hand when greeting and saying goodbye; it is also important to keep the appropriate amount of eye contact – think interested, not obsessed.

If you act the part, it will make the whole process easier for everyone involved and you will get into the flow of your conversation much quicker, which means more time for networking properly and building working relationships.

Follow Up!

This could potentially be the most important part of the whole networking process, and it’s the easiest to forget as well.

Developing a relationship takes more than just a 15-minute chat at an exhibition. Connect with your leads via email, social media and you could even give them a call.

Build a working relationship where you could refer clients to each other and in turn convert this individual to use your services.

It’s important to keep this relationship going past leaving the exhibition hall doors!