Achieve successful and profitable trade show exhibiting through collaboration

SUCCESS - Exhibitions and Events

SUCCESS – Exhibitions and Events

Dr. Keith Sawyer, author of Group Genius states, “Collaboration drives creativity because innovation always emerges from a series of sparks … never a single flash of insight.”

The new year is here and it’s the perfect opportunity to put strategies into place to ensure a successful and profitable year of trade show exhibiting. Get your team together and develop collaborative strategies to improve communication and align internal efforts.


Here are a few tips to get the process started.

1. Map out individual and team plans

Encourage each team member to share their ideas, goals, and expectations in an open and positive environment. Work to keep the discussion on track and allow each person an equal opportunity to speak. It is important to create an environment that is mutually supportive where new ideas are welcomed and discussed. This will ensure that team members feel open to taking risks, discussing change, and communicating ‘out of the box’ ideas.

2. Choose an Idea or Concept to Work With

As new ideas and strategies are discussed, choose a few to develop further which align with the company’s objectives. This is also an inspiring opportunity to ensure your organization’s objectives are clearly communicated and understood by your team. Encourage group feedback and determine the viability of these ideas. Progress ideas further until you determine one to move forward with.

3. Develop a Strategy to Execute and Delegate Roles

Now you need to address how it will happen and who is going to do it. Have someone lead this part of the meeting and make sure someone is taking notes as the strategy is developed. Start from the beginning and work through step-by-step. The more detail the better. This will work best in a collaborative environment where team members speak up to ensure that nothing is forgotten. You may like to delegate tasks as you go or address this at the end. It is important to ensure everyone understands their role and that these are balanced effectively.

4. Set Deadlines

Work through the execution strategy and set completion dates for each step. If a certain task is assigned to someone, give them the responsibility to set their own personal deadline. Setting deadlines and goals will ensure that team members have direction and will motivate them to get the job done. Follow up on the state of the project, have the deadlines been met? If not ask why and when the task will be done. It is too easy for tasks to fall by the wayside when we get busy, so it is important to be aware of what is going on and revise deadlines as you go so that everything is ready and perfected in time for your trade show.

As you begin to think about your marketing outreach and 2014 trade show schedule, I encourage you to get your team together and simply collaborate. It is the perfect time for change, whether that change is radical or minor. Innovation stems from collaboration and you never know what you will come up with when you put your heads together.

About the Author: Rebecca Cunz is the Marketing Assistant at Skyline Displays Australia.


Seven Ways Corporate Events and Tradeshows Are Evolving

Corporate events and tradeshows are nothing new, but noticeable changes in the way such events are orchestrated have taken place.

Understanding the evolution of corporate events and tradeshows is a good way to get a grasp of what today’s audiences are looking for at such events and how to leave a good—and hopefully lasting—impression. Technology is the most obvious change. However, tradeshows and corporate events have evolved in other ways over the years, including how such events are marketed and presented.

Let’s take a look at seven ways corporate events and tradeshows have evolved this past decade.

1. Apps

Yes, there is an app for that tradeshow you’re planning. That includes apps for everything and anything related to tradeshows and corporate events, no matter how simple or elaborate. Many of the tradeshow apps out now can be customized to further promote your event or help attendees plan their day at your event. Apps can also help attendees keep track of all the information typically presented at a tradeshow or corporate event.

2. Emails and texts

Thanks to the proliferation of smartphones, emails are relevant again. You can easily send out mass emails or texts to inform all relevant personnel of any last-minute changes. Emails can also be used to promote your event, especially since you easily send out the same email to all relevant parties. That allows everyone in attendance to be fully prepared when coming to your events. This is also a great way to send out quick follow-ups or you can add new contacts you meet at your event to your email mailing list. The possibilities are nearly endless. You can text other employees to ensure that everybody is on the same page. You can even solicit immediate feedback following a successful encounter or transaction at your event.

3. Smartphones

Aside from texts and emails, smartphones can also be used when you make a sale at your tradeshow. Instead of jotting down customer information, you can easily complete the transaction right there with attachments that turn your smartphone into a card-swiping machine. Smartphones also allow you to easily add contact info without worrying about losing it before you get back to the office.

4. Interactive exhibits

Gone are the days of simple poster boards and a few product samples. Exhibits are more interactive than ever. Potential customers often have the option being directly involved with some high-tech exhibits. Real-time adaptions, including some in 3-D, often greet attendees at today’s tradeshows. Data can easily be accessed at the touch of a button to allow potential customers to see the benefits of specific products and services without having to sit through a boring sales pitch or walk through an assortment of booths while someone hands out a brochure.

5. Measuring results

It’s no longer enough just to “have a feeling” that your tradeshow or corporate event went well. These days, it’s all about cold, hard data. Just about every aspect of your tradeshow or corporate event can be measured, from the number of visitors to your booth to your ROI ratios. Even any sales generated following your event can be measured in real time. You can easily see where your budget dollars went and how effective your results were, which allows you to make productive adjustments for your next event.

6. Knowledgeable buyers

You are no longer the main source of information for your attendees. Today’s potential customers and clients are more informed than ever. Don’t be surprised if someone coming to check out your event already knows how your last product launch went. You can also be pretty sure that your attendees have read any online reviews about your business to determine how trustworthy you are. That means you need to be just as prepared, if not more so.

7. Social media

For all that social media can do, it will never replace the actual advantages of putting together a great tradeshow or corporate event. That is mainly because human connections still matter in the business world, especially when you’re promoting your business or showcasing upcoming products. Besides, there is something about the actual interaction with people that can’t be replicated—at least, not yet. Social media, however, can be a great way to promote your event and send out photos and videos from your event as it happens and once it’s concluded.

* * *

If you find that your tradeshow or corporate event isn’t as successful as it used to be, it might be time to make a few changes. The more adept you are at incorporating new technology into your event, the more likely you are to see productive and cost-effective results.

Kristine Mason has worked as a business consultant for the past seven years with some of the largest brands in the US.
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Why trade shows can further your business

Pop Ups and Pull Ups

When you’re running a small business on a tight budget, the high costs of running a trade show stand can make it seem like an unwise investment compared to cheaper forms of marketing.

While advertising, direct sales, and online marketing certainly have their benefits – particularly when it comes to start-up costs – none compare to trade shows when it comes to pure return on investment, especially exponential return on investment.

From ROI to powerful branding, here are the five biggest benefits that your business could achieve from a successful trade show presence.

1. Establish your brand

While most people think of trade shows as platforms for direct marketing, they’re also a great opportunity to establish your brand. Exhibiting lets you show off your branding to thousands of attendees, giving you valuable name recognition.

In order to establish your brand at a trade show, you’ll need to make sure that your exhibit is perfectly configured for attracting attention. Use custom roll up banners, interactive displays, and other material to make your exhibit stand out.

2. Connect with prospects

Trade shows are a great opportunity to turn prospects into customers, and the high cost of exhibiting can often become incredibly low once it’s divided by the number of formerly cool leads you’re able to turn red hot.

Train your sales team before the event to make sure they have the skills and attitude to connect with could-be customers. If you’re reconnecting with leads that went cold in the past, it’s important that your team has something new and useful to offer.

3. Increase client/customer spending

It’s much easier to encourage an existing customer or client to spend more than it is to convert a new one. By using trade shows as an opportunity to connect with your existing customers, you can work out their problems and propose useful solutions.

Schedule meetings – preferably over drinks or dinner – with your current customers and clients, and use each meeting as an opportunity to learn about their needs and position your business as a potential solution.

4. Meet new vendors

Most businesses think of trade shows as an opportunity to expand their customer or client base. Others, however, think of trade shows as an opportunity to expand both their sales base and their supply chain.

If your sales team is taking care of prospects and existing customers, spend some of your time browsing the trade show floor looking for new vendors, service providers, and even lucrative recruiting sources.

5. Expand your industry knowledge

Trade shows that have live presentations and seminars are great places to expand your knowledge of your industry. Visit a seminar or two and expand your industry knowledge while your sales team takes care of customer acquisition.

From new marketing tactics to brand new technology, trade show presentations are often where big companies – typically the leaders in your industry – announce their latest technology, their smartest strategies, and their most lucrative promotions.

Peter Symonds is a trade show marketing expert from Display Wizard.

WOW what an exhibition stand

Now this is what I’d call a fun and colourful exhibition stand – super design.

Attracting a crowd to your exhibition stand

Outdoor Entertainment

Outdoor Entertainment

Employing some form of entertainment after building your stand can be a great way of attracting visitors and striking up an in interest. But with so many options now available to exhibitors and contractors, finding something both original yet relevant to your brand may be a daunting task. We’ve listed below a few different examples of ones that we have found to be successful for stands in the past:

1. Music

The presence of a musician on your stand can be a massive enticement for some audiences, and finding a quality musician to play at your stand for a modest price is not as hard as you think. A stand we provided for Coopervision enabled us to employ the talents of a local music student from Keele University, who drew a consistent crowd to the stand with her piano playing. This is a good example of how you can find willing musicians from the local scene or educational facilities. It may be a good idea to listen to them first though; a real life Les Dawson probably wouldn’t gain you sort of attention you would like.

2. Magic

Magic and illusions are a great way to attract a crowd at a show. Few other forms of entertainment have the power to truly get people asking themselves “How did they do that?”. A magician can be a brilliant way of not only attracting a crowd for the entirety of their set, but also a good reinforcer of your brand to those present. A magician was used at a stand Synetrix, and he would help to communicate brand straplines and messages by saying them at certain parts of his act (magic words, the end of a trick).

3. Gamification

Sometimes it’s nice to give people a chance to engage with your stand. And what better way to do this than incorporate a game into your stand? We don’t advise turning your stand into a shrine to It’s a Knockout (although we admit, the thought of clients running around in Penguin outfits does seem rather amusing), but inviting visitors to take part in a light competition of some sort can be a great ice breaker. It can also give you a chance to incorporate your brand message into the precedings. For example, if your strap line was “Aiming higher”, maybe some sort of shooting or darts game would work well? It’s also a good idea to employ an accomplished compere for the day to make sure you attract enough people to your game.

4. Celebrity Chefs

Whether or not you are a fan of the vast range of food related programmes  which feature daily on our televisions, if you are wanting to demonstrate the capabilities of any product related to the food industry, no one will do it better than a household name industry professional. We have been to shows where various brands have employed the skills and endorsement of some well known names, and though sometimes costly the association between them and your brand can gain priceless trust and rapport with your audience.

5. Sport

It may not find it’s place at every show, but an accomplished sports personality or performer might clinch you recognition from many attendees. Tell any big sports fan visiting a show that one of their favourite athletes is on stand 106 in hall C and you can safely bet that they will quickly reunite with their inner 13 year old and want to rush off in search of them. This certainly seemed the case with some people at a Toshiba stand a few years ago where former German international football captain and World Cup winner Lothar Matthaus was acting as an ambassador for the brand. People watched as he spoke about the brand, gave out autographed footballs and even performed a few tricks for star struck football lovers. He can be seen above delighting the many fans who are queuing up to meet him.

Source:  Posted by Envisage  in During the Exhibition