Trade conventions are great marketing opportunities, allowing you to network with other businesses and promote your services to those who may be interested in your area of trade. But how do you stand out amongst all the other companies and stalls present? Failing to advertise yourself properly could make it a wasted trip. Here are some ways to make the most out of a convention.
Before going to the event, you should receive some information detailing where your stall will be and which other businesses will be attending and located around your area. Research these businesses before going to a convention. If their trade is similar to yours, they are your main competition! Find out what it is that makes your service stand out from theirs and make that your selling point at the convention. For example, if you’re a health and fitness convention and the gym equipment your company sells is cheaper than your competition’s – market your stall as ‘budget gym equipment that everyone can buy’ or something along those lines. If your services are more expensive, market yourself as ‘luxury’ or ‘professional’.
Don’t let your stall blend in with others. A great way to do this make sure your signage creative. Invest in cardboard cutouts, creatively-shaped signs and big colourful banners. And of course your signage doesn’t have to be static. Did you know that you can hire pedicabs for convention marketing? These mini vehicles are sure to stand out. Other ideas involve wearing branded t-shirts, hiring a mascot-like figure to carry a sign around and offering branded bags.
Make a speech
All conventions will have an area for talks, whether it be a business convention or a trade convention. Talks can be educational, motivational, promotional or a blend of all three. Communicate with the organizers in advance about the opportunity of giving a speech. Public speaking can be daunting, but it’s the best way to stand out at a convention. Instead of having to give the same lengthy spiel to every passer-by, you can save it all for your talk and tell anyone that visits your stall in brief that you will be on at a certain time. Whilst you may want to shout about you and your business, the best talks commonly aren’t wholly promotional. Use it as a chance to inform people of your area of expertise, or to give advice to fellow businesses, on top of promoting.
Many people at the convention will be using social media, whether they’re other businesses or members of public. Let people know of your presence by taking to Twitter. If you’re giving a talk, tell people what time it will be one. Take a picture of your stall so people know what it looks like. Shout about the convention well in advance so that people who follow you on Twitter already can come visit your stall. Keep on top of convention news and what things are trending and link your business in with this.