Thriving at Trade Shows: The Theme
When you participate in a trade show, it is necessary to have a theme for the goal you are trying to accomplish. An educational booth has different materials that a service booth or a product booth, and each has its nuance in logistics, strategy, and transactions.
For educational spaces, it is important to remember the visitor point of view which influences the type of media used to convey information. Having a bunch of flyers flat on a table isn’t as effective as a short video that loops. Providing education can be as simple as a well-written handout or tri-fold, but a picture can speak volumes if done correctly.
Service booths often provide demonstrations, and many believe they shouldn’t charge for what they do as it is often just a sample. It is effective to have a method of monetizing the participation either through a nominal fee for the sample service, or pre-selling a trade show special at a discounted rate. An example is to create a special offer just for the show that brings the consumer to the place of business following the event. To avoid false commitments, be prepared to collect payment ahead of time.
Product displays are often one of the easiest spaces to create a return on investment during the event. Although there are some rules to follow when choosing which products to display, a price point that is above the demographics of the crowd has little chance of selling, and a price point that is too low can come across as too cheap. It is important to know your audience and what they expect as a value in their purchases.
Each of these themes must have a different approach to their promotional aids and the amount of information displayed. For this reason, it is crucial to know ahead of time. Other factors will affect this decision too. For instance, a sole vendor at a booth has fewer options than a team working that space. Speaking to curious visitors is a one-to-one interaction, and a soloist must have other ways of getting the point across to otherwise while engaged. If not, the soloist loses every potential client they don’t talk too. Simple as that.
Different themes may also have different rules that apply from the promoter or the venue. For instance, a service provider will most likely need to show proof of liability insurance if they are going to have physical interactions with the public. Quite often, there are specific requirements needed on the insurance, and this must be taken care of before the trade show.
A vendor who wants to give out samples will often have to those items approved to ensure they meet the guidelines of those facilitating the event. Waiting until the day of could mean the samples are not allowed. If the business is depending on those samples to drawn consumer interest, this is a disastrous situation. Knowing what you can and cannot do ahead of time should not be understated.
Trade shows can generate a lot of profits and exposure for a business if planned properly. Know what your main objective is, and then create an appropriate strategy for that theme with the right promotional aids.
This article is the fifth in a series of Thriving at Trade Shows as we prepare for the 2020 Alternative Health Expo. Check back weekly for new tips on how you can optimize the experience and make your participation a success!
Kathie Fingerson is the founder of Healers of the Valley and the Alternative Health Expo. This event attracts thousands of visitors each spring to Grand Junction, CO. See more tips on creating a successful expo experience, click here.
The Alternative Health Expo is growing into a destination event for our community. Our March 2019 event was a huge success with around 4000 visitors! E.P.I.C.™ Grand Valley magazine launched their first issue, a wonderful publication dedicated to Empowering People and Inspiring Community. Everyone had a great time and learned about lots of new and exciting healing techniques.