Trade Show Triumph: 5 Expert Tips for Maximizing ROI

leverage the exposure

The world of tradeshows can seem intimidating, 

and if you’re a company that is being mindful of your budget, you’re just not sure if the expense is worth the exposure. However, tradeshows can be a great way to extend the reach of your customer base while also bringing clout to your business, especially if you are endeavoring into a new segment of the market. So how do you get the most return on your investment? Here are a few tips:

1. Maximize communication opportunities prior to the show

It’s important to utilize every channel at your disposal to generate awareness regarding your participation at a show. Post on social media channels, create a banner on your website, launch an email campaign to your account base that you believe will be in attendance and don’t forget to partner with the show itself. Most shows will either share or sell the pre-registration list of attendees. With that information, you can target the specific people that will be walking the tradeshow floor. Utilize the social media efforts of the tradeshow as well to generate awareness of your company and booth location. In essence, get the word out as much as you can prior to the show. It will help you reap the benefits of healthy booth traffic on-site.

2. Don’t get wrapped up in keeping up with the Joneses

It’s easy to look at some of the large exhibitors and think to yourself, “I want to make a big splash on the tradeshow floor just like them.” There are more economical ways of achieving great exposure without breaking the bank. Register early so that you can have your pick of exhibit spaces and capitalize on prime real estate. Look into creating some of your own displays and graphics that you can feature instead of using the exhibitor companies to create them for you. Consider an open concept, which provides a more inviting feel while minimizing the amount of furniture you need to rent.

3. Capture as many lead opportunities at your booth

Make sure you rent a lead retrieval system if they are available. If not, make sure to bring a fish bowl for folks to drop their business card. Create a raffle opportunity so that attendees are motivated to leave their information with you. The raffle can be for a free offer on your product or service. If that’s not the best way to go for your company, then pick one of the latest technology gadgets and raffle it off. With a healthy number of attendees’ information captured at the show, the more fruitful the post show efforts will be.

4. Leverage your post show communications to keep those leads relevant to your pipeline

Just as important as maximizing your communication prior to the show, it’s equally important to get your message out after the show. Utilize the tradeshow again for any of their post show communication efforts. Make sure to reach out to the leads you captured on site. Send an email and reiterate the main points about your business that struck a nerve and resounded with them. Make sure to deploy all post show communications at most within two weeks of the show date to best capitalize on the traction gained from the show.

5. Explore ways to barter your products/services where appropriate for discounts

Securing a barter opportunity will depend on your business offering and the type of show you are attending, however if you have a product or service you can provide, consider bartering for your exhibit space or for premium marketing spots within their own marketing initiatives. Not only do you guarantee a new customer for your company, but you also minimize your spend.

By keeping these tips in mind, you can more confidently venture out into the world of tradeshows to maximize your exposure while managing your expenses.

Written by Pamela Ossa-Kane, Director of Marketing & Communications