Trade shows create a unique opportunity to interface with thousands of customers in one day. When businesses take advantage of this chance they can reach beyond normal sales and seek out consumers they never thought possible.

Time, planning, and hard work are all going to be important factors if you plan on putting together a successful trade show.

The first thing you will want to do when beginning to plan your trade show booth is research the trade show. This can involve talking to the coordinators of the trade show to find out what audiences are involved, how big your booth will be, whether you will have access to outlets, etc. The more you know about the show before going into it the better prepared you can be.

The next step is pre-show marketing. Often the trade show will have contact listings for those pre-registered for the show available to show participants. Take advantage of this list and send out a mailer to peak the participants interest before the show. That way when they get to the show they will already be thinking of your company’s name.

Plan a successful trade show meetingWhile at the show it is important to have a well put together booth. Three seconds is all your company has to attract the attention of the customers passing by. Keep your booth clean, clear, and simple. Pick a focal point using large graphics and easy to read text. Incorporating a number of elements such as a hanging sign, power point, and display aids, will enhance your booth.

Have plenty of useful giveaways that will advertise for you. Make sure your company name and logo are on all things you give away. It is also important to put thought into your giveaways, it is best if you make them something your customer can actually use. Creativity counts here so take some time to think outside the box.

Lastly once the show is over it is tempting to want to kick back and relax over a successful showing. Make sure during your celebration you don’t forget the most important part of what you gained from your trade show which is the contacts of potential customers. Follow-up with them the week after the show, this will carry your company name from the trade show back into their business. It’s an essential part of doing trade shows, that many companies often overlook.

So use trade shows to your company’s advantage. If you take the time to do it right, you will gain more than you put into it.

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