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5 ways to drive leads at exhibitions

So you’ve signed on the dotted line with your exhibition stand contractor and your final design has gone to the printers. You’re absolutely certain that your exhibition stand design is engaging and effective, but are there any other ways to be sure of maximising leads at the event or conference itself?

Create a buzz
If you’re on social media (and if you’re not, why not?), then the week before the event is the best time to build some buzz around what your business does, and what they will be doing. Most events have hashtags on Twitter now, enabling people to engage in conversation beforehand. Let people know if you’re doing show-specific offers and encourage them to come and visit your stand using sneak-peeks on your social feeds.

Utilise email lists
Here’s a great way to collaborate with your exhibition stand designer – if they have an email list, then you have a great opportunity for a bit of cross-selling, particularly if your industries align in any way. By mentioning each other in respective newsletters, you’re unlocking potential that you might not have found organically. Also, it’s a really nice way of building a longer term relationship with your designer.

Train your staff
Most people assume that professionals at events are just show-ready. That’s not always the case, and like most sales-led things in the business world, it requires a certain amount of skill and experience. While it’s important that your show staff have well-rounded responses to anything that might come their way, it’s also vital that they’re passionate about your product or service. If you have people in your organisation that may not have sales experience but absolutely live and breathe your business, consider some training for them to really push your brand at events.

Live demos have real impact
Without something to show delegates at an event, your stand is likely to fall flat (no matter how stunning your stand design is). Unless you have a pretty well-known product or service, people will come and visit you expecting to see something. Here’s where you can be really creative. Use tablet devices for digital offerings, and if you have the space, you can also use projection to ensure your imagery is seen from across the room. If you have a physical product to show people, make sure you bring a decent enough range of items to illustrate what makes your business unique.

Don’t neglect aftercare
This is a bit of a cheating point as it takes place after the show when your leads have already been recorded, but aftercare is a vital component of marketing and can make the difference between a lead that goes nowhere and one that proves to be a valuable asset to your business. If you gathered email addresses, make sure you put some time into crafting a meaningful email message that takes into account the customer journey and gives them content of value. If you have phone numbers, make sure that you adjust the conversations accordingly, so there isn’t any duplication.


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