Exhibition Checklist 2020 – The Ultimate Checklist for Exhibiting this Year
Exhibitions provide a unique opportunity for companies, both large and small, to grow their business. This is primarily through developing new leads and consolidating existing client relations, although it can also be achieved through direct sales.
For exhibitors and attendees there is a significant amount of preparation required before, during and after an exhibition in order to fully maximise the potential benefits of attendance.
We’ve created this handy checklist for anyone exhibiting this year to help ensure they feel confident in making the most out of the event.
Before the Event
Whether the main objective of a company is to launch a new product, generate leads, build brand awareness, enter a new market, retain current customers or boost sales, there are a number of important decisions to be made in the weeks and months leading up to the event.
- Exhibition Stand – In terms of the stand, the consideration is whether to buy or hire, together with the choice of a custom build, a cheaper modular construction or a pavilion for larger exhibitions. Once those decisions have been made, there is the consideration of the shipping and installation, something that is often included as part of a hire contract. Alongside the preparation for the stand is the reservation of a space for it in the exhibition hall. This is something that should be done at the earliest opportunity in order to achieve the best possible position.
- Promotion – Exhibitors should start the process of promoting their presence at the exhibition well before the days of the event using avenues such as social media. It is also important to secure the attendance of loyal clients as well as attracting new ones and providing them with tickets to the event is a way to achieve this. In reaching out to attendees, the opportunity should be taken to set up meetings in advance wherever possible.
- Staff Training – Presentation is everything at an exhibition and there are several aspects of this that should be addressed in advance. Staff training for the team having direct contact with attendees is paramount and should include practice in meet and greet techniques and conversation starters. Staff should also practice explaining what the benefits of the product or service is. The team should also be made up of the best sales people whenever possible.
- Promotional Material and Resources – The design and production of promotional material from staff clothing, samples, prizes, displays and banners all need to be organised in a timely and co-ordinated manner. In selecting give-aways, it is often effective to provide something that people can wear that is clearly identifiable with the brand logo. Competition prizes should also promote the company and its products in some way.
During the Event
At the event the initial task of exhibitors is to attract the attention and interest of the attendees and there is usually a lot of competition to contend with; so, staff need to be very proactive in drawing people to their stand.
- Positioning – There are a number of strategies that the team can employ to bring people to their stand and a key one is physical positioning. If team members stand too far back from the stream of passers-by, then those people will continue to pass by. The team members need to be in front of the stand engaging with people as they are passing, asking open questions, inviting them to enter competitions, to try out samples, to participate in surveys, to take away handouts and brochures or to enter the stand to discuss their needs further.
- Customer Experience – It is a good idea to have some bar stools available near the front of the stand where potential clients can rest their legs without feeling the intimidation of being invited to the comfy chairs further back on the stand. Things that can also attract people to a stand are music (or simply noise), free food and drink, be it simply a bottled water, a game or competition to participate in, or some demonstration or presentation. The key aim is to either make people curious or to meet their physical or emotional needs and, of course, for them to provide their name and contact details in exchange for participation in the competition or in order to receive additional information about products.
- Staff Presence – The good deployment of staff during the days of the exhibition can massively enhance the benefits that accrue from attendance. If the team is sufficiently large it is worthwhile having some members circulating around the exhibition floor. This not only gives the business access to more of the attendees, but also allows staff to see what the competition are doing and gather ideas from other stands. A further deployment of staff can be to have some dressed as attendees with the purpose of attracting people to the stand with their displays of interest and enthusiasm towards the product or service.
After the Event
It is vitally important that the leads acquired during an exhibition are followed up quickly afterwards and are not allowed to go cold. It is advisable to make contact with new leads within the first couple of days following the event, before there is the chance of being forgotten.
- Review and Analysis – A thorough review of all aspects of participation in the exhibition should also be undertaken, using the measures that were established in advance. These will undoubtedly include the impact on sales and the generation of new leads and potential new clients.
Learn More with Smart Display
For both the attendee and the exhibitor there can be enormous advantages in committing to an exhibition. It offers an almost unique opportunity to network on a large scale and provides a real opportunity to generate new leads, cement relationships with existing clients and boost sales.
Key to success is plenty of planning and knowing what it is that is being sought from the event. Taking advice from seasoned event goers is always a good idea, and in terms of getting the right stand for an exhibition, get in touch with us here at Smart Display and we can guide exhibitors through the different options available in order to provide the most appropriate and cost effective solution.