Small Business Info

How to Market Your Small Business at Tradeshows

You’ve established your business, created a website, printed your business cards, and even have a few loyal customers. It’s time to grow your small business even more. Take your company to the next step by taking it on the road! No, we’re not talking about a trapeze act or an invisible man act (seriously … so cool). We’re talking about packing your bags and taking your small business to a trade show! Here’s 7 tips to make sure your trade show exposition is a hit:

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Attention. Picture that little kid who is too short to be seen in a large crowd jumping up and down when you think about “attention.” Your booth should lure people over to you, be it with banners, giveaways, prize drawings, free literature, demonstrations, or surveys. Take note of the time of year and incorporate it into a fun, interesting theme for your booth and incorporate some of your key marketing messages.

Research. Know what trade shows are going on in your area and which would be good for your business. Pay attention to the number of businesses that will be there, average number of attendees, attendee demographics, etc. You can even take it a step further and reach out to previous businesses who have exhibited there and get their feedback on the event!

Registration. Register early! Some events will even offer advanced registration discounts.

Objectives. Set objectives for your trade show efforts and list them in order of importance. Determine what needs to be done in order to obtain them. For example, gathering a certain number of leads via a survey. You could even consider gathering research on your competitors as one of your goals.

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Publicity. Extra, Extra! Read all about it! Make sure everyone knows that you’ll be attending the trade show. Send out flyers, announce it on your website, run an email campaign, write a blog article and share it on social media. Make sure to mention any incentives you’ll be offering (i.e. giveaways or contests).

Contests. Contests are a great way to engage potential customers. Have the attendees fill out a survey in order to be entered into a contest or drawing. Make sure you chose a prize that is relevant to both your business and your industry. After the trade show, follow up with all entrants! You could even consider offering a consolation prize or exclusive offer.

Preparation. As far as trade shows go, less is NOT more! Be sure to bring more than enough supplies for your booth. Generate enthusiasm with your staff who will be manning the booth. Have a pow-wow with your employees before the trade show to ensure they’re knowledgeable about your company and your products. Encourage them to interact with the attendees and work with you in obtaining your objectives.

Has your small business ever attended a trade show? Let us know in the comments below!

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