For any first-timer, placing yourself in a hall full of established business owners and eccentric exhibitors can be daunting. Whether you’re an attendee or an exhibitor, it’s easy to let your nerves get the best of you at your first event.
To help banish those nerves, there are some things you can do to help exhibition day go as smoothly as possible.
Find out who will be attending
This is your first step to networking at your first exhibition. Discovering who will be attending, exhibiting and speaking at the exhibition can help you decide who might be the most useful to speak to, or who might be able to best introduce you to other people.
Attendee lists or exhibitor lists are often available in advance – find out who might be interested in your company and vice versa. You could try sending them an introductory email reaching out and explaining you would love to meet them.
Having already reached out to a range of people, come exhibition day, you have a point of conversation and a reason to stop by their booth or to encourage them to stop by yours.
Brief your staff
Naturally, the people who come to your booth will be asking questions about the products or services you offer.
Make sure you prepare the people on your stand with the information they’ll need to answer these queries – impress visitors with your knowledgeable answers.
Ensure that your staff are friendly and conversational. They’re the faces of your business for the day, so ensure they are approachable and comfortable asking questions themselves, assessing the needs of those who stop by your stand and turning them into qualifying leads and customers.
Engage on social media
Most of the buzz regarding a trade show happens on social media beforehand. A lot of exhibitions and shows will have a specific hashtag on Twitter in which they encourage announcements and photos to be shared under the guise of connecting likeminded attendees.
Use LinkedIn to your advantage and connect with people before the show to make your follow up process easier and more memorable.
Bring business cards
This is key to any exhibition. How else do you expect people to remember your contact details? A business card presents these in a neat and compact way and is also your time to shine when it comes to design and representing your business.
Make sure to invest in some business cards even if you’re only attending and not exhibiting – you never know what companies might be interested in and want to contact you.
The offering of a business card is an extension of the conversation after the show, where the real deals are made. Don’t be the person to miss out on this opportunity!
Be physically ready
It goes without saying that an exhibition will undoubtedly be a long day on your feet. Make sure you get a good night’s sleep beforehand and don’t drink too much alcohol the night before – you’ll need to be on top form and the chirpiest you can on exhibition day.
Make yourself memorable and memorise others
It’s great when people can remember you from an exhibition. Whether this is due to the way you look, the conversations you had or how your stand was presented, it’s good to be a key takeaway from someone’s day.
When it comes to the follow up, it makes the whole process easier if people can remember you and what you spoke about.
On your business’s side, take notes on your conversations so you’re familiar with who’s who and what they want.
It never hurts to be sure and can result in a following sales pitch being much more tailored, personal and persuasive.
So, there’s our top tips for making the most of your first exhibition and getting the best leads whether exhibiting yourself or attending.
For all your exhibition needs, stands and services, first timer or veteran, contact us today at 200m2.