Tradeshows are a great opportunity for making connections and gaining leads. If you’re new to the tradeshow channel, you may find it challenging to drive the right kind of traffic to your booth. There are different schools of thought when it comes to tradeshow strategy. Some businesses choose to drive traffic through games, giveaways, expensive booths or flashy promotional gadgets. These are all good ways to drive traffic, but not necessarily ways to attract your target audience.
Tradeshows are unique in that they are a place where you can meet the CEO, the CFO or the everyday employee. Before you exhibit at a tradeshow, carefully review the attendee breakdown, so you know how many decision makers you will have an opportunity to meet. If you feel there will be a good number of high quality prospects attending, then exhibiting is worth the effort.
The marketing effort for a tradeshow should begin weeks before the event starts. Once you receive an attendee list, you should get to work identifying your top prospects. Once you’ve determined your top prospects, here are a few different activities you can do to help drive this prime audience to your booth during the tradeshow.
Send a pre-show mailer. If you’re going to send a pre-show mailer, try to time its arrival about a week before the tradeshow begins. If you have some special attraction in your booth, such as a giveaway or game, be sure to include information about that, as well as your booth location. Another way to drive traffic is to offer a “show special” or discounted offer just for tradeshow attendees. If the prospect is truly in the market for your product or service, they will be sure to stop by and learn more.
Make connections on LinkedIn. It is a good practice to promote your upcoming presence at a tradeshow or event on social media prior to the event. We like LinkedIn for making professional connections. LinkedIn is also a great place to view attendee profiles prior to the event. Feel free to send in-messages inviting attendees to stop by your booth, schedule a meeting time or invite them to connect. You can also target them with LinkedIn ads prior to the event to grow brand recognition for once the event begins.
Check out the app. Conference apps are becoming more and more mainstream. Typically within the app there is a list of conference attendees, the ability to message them, or even participate in a social stream where you can post messages to all attendees. This may take a little work, but try to stay active in the app, make connections, set up appointments for the booth and advertise your show specials.
IP Target Digital Ads. How better to keep your brand top-of-mind than to deploy targeted online messaging. With our Captive B2B Locations MotusIP Campaign, we can help clients target digital ads down to the conference WiFi for the tradeshow they are attending. Anyone using the special event WiFi can be served your ads when they visit websites throughout the event. ** You don't even need to attend and save on hotel and airfare!
No matter how you choose to engage with tradeshow attendees, the best way to ensure visitors to your booth is to do some planning and pre-show marketing. Contact us at B2E to discuss opportunities for pre-show targeting. We’d love to help!