More than two-thirds of exhibitors do
not have a solid plan in place and end up making mistakes at the
tradeshow as they exhibit.
In fact, not having an organized,
comprehensive plan is one of the most common mistakes that
And it’s safe to say that nearly all
exhibitors don’t have a solid grasp of the metrics of their success
or failure that comes from that tradeshow appearance. Why? Because
companies tend to put all of their energy, time and money into
putting on a good show, and very little into counting the results
after the end of the show. Measuring your results – leads, sales
closed – is one of the most critical measurements you can make.
Let’s look at some of the common
mistakes you might make as you exhibit at the tradeshow.
First, you don’t have a
comprehensive plan. This means going
from A-Z and
planning to cover all your bases, from pre-show marketing and
show execution to having an exhibit that accurately represents
your brand and communicates your message to counting leads and
sales after the show is done. Know what you’re selling, who
you’re selling to, how you’re planning to get back your return
on the investment and where your tradeshow appearance fits in
your overall marketing strategy.
Secondly, you may have the
wrong people in the booth. Tradeshow floors are a chaotic busy
mess where hundreds or thousands of people come and go all day
long. Without proper preparation, which usually means staff
training and picking the right people, you’ll end up with sales
people or other staffers that can’t interact with precision,
veracity and alacrity with those visitors. They’re
not asking proper questions, they’re
letting big fish get away and they’re spending too much time on
little fish or people that won’t ever buy.
Third: you’re repeating yourself. Do
you ever see the same company at the same show with the same
exhibit year after year, showing off the same products? On close
examination it seems nothing really changes from year to year. A
company that’s on top of their game will upgrade the booth
regularly or replace it when necessary; they’ll have new
products to show off and new ways of interacting with visitors.
Fourth: you’re cheapening your brand
by having inappropriate brand ambassadors in your booth. Pretty
models in skimpy outfits may attract a crowd, but they do
nothing to improve or define your company’s brand unless, of
course, your brand is built on pretty models in skimpy outfits.
Otherwise, in today’s climate, exhibiting in the US using those
types of representatives will likely get you negative feedback.
Fifth: the biggest tradeshow
marketing sin of all – you’re not following up on all of those
leads in a timely manner. The fact that tradeshow leads are
cheaper by the dozen and more targeted than any other kind of
lead, coupled with the fact that your competitors have many of
the same leads in their bucket, means that you must strike while
the iron is hot. Letting a lead sit more than a few weeks means
it grows colder and colder until you might as well toss it out
with the other dead fish.
We all make mistakes – it’s part of life
– but the more you can minimize mistakes with oodles of tradeshow
marketing dollars on the table, the better off you’ll be.
Click here to grab my Tradeshow Follow-up Checklist
© 2017 by Tim