As a business owner, preparing for a trade show can be very stressful and frustrating, because you don’t know how to attract people to your startup and make yourself heard amongst all the other businesses that are displaying their activities there.
To have a great trade show display you need to follow some of the best pieces of advice given for startups so you can take advantage of this event to attract more customers and potential investors.
Know the place
The first thing you need to do is get the information related to the place where the trade show is going to be carried out.
You can ask the organizers of the event and request details such as the layout of the area you’ll have, the type of visitors, size of the table you’ll have, wall space, etc...
All of this will help you determine everything you need to take with you to make your booth stand out and have everything at your hand.
Focus on your stand
Once you know the layout and space available for you, you have to determine how you want to organize your stand in a way that stands out.
If it’s a big event, then it’s better if you invest in a stand that has your company’s logo and color scheme, since this will be more interesting than having only a table with a tablecloth and some flyers.
You have to own your space, make it shine, so everyone can identify your startup. Be creative and ambitious with your stand, since it’ll be the first thing that everybody’s going to look.
The display of your stand will depend on what your startup does, and you have to focus on that to let people know the services that you offer or the products that you’re selling.
If you’re a service company, make sure to include a presentation board where you can show all the information about the services you provide.
If you’re selling a product, you can arrange a display table with some samples including smaller items in the front and larger item in the back, so everyone can see them all.
The reason why you’re in a trade show is that you want people to know your startup and what you do, so you need to have informational materials that you can supply to the visitors.
It’s better if you use promotional material that is engaging, which means that is colorful and interesting, so people will feel interested in reading it. Make sure to include all the essential details and your contact information.
If you have the chance, take a TV monitor with you so you can display a video or slideshow about your startup since this will be very engaging to the visitors. It’s an easy and sure way to draw attention to your stand and also to show all the information related to your startup.
You can also arrange a portfolio of your work as part of your display, and this works great if you’re a startup that offers services related to art, audiovisual or photography. You just have to print off your work and exhibit it in a place that visitors can see it, perhaps in a wall or in a separate stand.
Giveaways are important
One of the most important aspects of participating in a trade show is that you have the opportunity of showing your business to the world, and you have to make it memorable.
This is why giveaways are essentials since the visitors that come to your stand will take with them a piece of information about your startup so they can remember your name even after the event has ended.
You have a lot of options, but you have to plan this ahead of time so you can have everything you need at the event.
Most people who are attending a trade show expect to take some goods with them, so make sure to make useful items with your logo on it. These are some giveaways ideas:
- Business cards, flyers, and brochures: make sure to include all your contact information.
- Pen, magnets, cups, mousepads, and office decorations: include your company name and logo.
- Food: pack food in a plastic bag that has your logo and company information.
- Gift certificates and coupons: offer discounts for some of your services so your customers get a deal and come back for more.
Make other activities
Even though you´re participating in a business event, it doesn’t mean that your stand has to be boring, you can include some activities that keep visitors engaged and enjoying their time.
You want people to talk about your booth, so you have to offer something extra to keep the visitors coming.
There are many things you can do, like hosting games or have a draw for a prize, since this will keep them interested and your startup will gain all the attention that you want.
This is also great because it’ll help you measure your audience response, so you’ll know what they want and how you can improve your interactions with them
Greet your visitors
If your stand has the best display in the event, you have prepared excellent giveaways, and you are planning some fun activities for the trade show, there’s something that it’s very important to reach success, and is that you have to be friendly with all of the visitors.
You’re the main image of your startup, so you have to dress properly, talk nicely, and always be nice with everyone that approaches your stand.
Prepare a short introductory speech so you can start the conversation, and always try to keep with a smile, this way people will feel comfortable around you and they’ll want to listen to what you have to say about your startup.
If you have enough cash flow, you can hire an assistant that can help you deal with the visitors and to make sure that everyone is getting attention.