As an Exhibit Manager, your goal is to get a return on objective (ROO) at each event you participate in. The objective for each event can vary depending on its scope, audience, and format. While it is commonly assumed that the goal of a show is to gain qualified leads (and it can often be that), there are other reasons why an organization chooses to exhibit. Identifying those reasons, and sharing with your exhibit staff, will help you establish how to approach the event and measure the outcomes.
What are you trying to get out of your show?
- Generate qualified sales leads
Pro Tip: Ensure your staff is well trained to qualify leads. In this case, quality is more important than quantity because a qualified lead has a much higher chance of becoming a customer, and ultimately that is the goal.
- Sell on the show floor
Pro Tip: Ensure buying from you is easy. Double check your credit card processing or order acquisition so buyers can simply buy right then.
- Build brand awareness
Pro Tip: Consistency is key! Your brand and look must be the same across all marketing platforms – from your lobby to your web site and all the way to the show floor. You want someone to walk off the show floor, go to your web site, and feel it is simply another extension of who you are.
- Reach a specific audience
Pro Tip: Make it very clear who you are and what you do with impactful, to-the-point graphics. If these are potential new customers, you will want to communicate what makes you unique and a better choice than your competition.
- Personally meet your current customers and suppliers
Pro Tip: Seating is crucial! If you want to sit down and talk with someone, use lounge or bar furniture for casual conversations and an enclosed meeting space with a conference table and chairs for private meetings. Don’t have enough space in your exhibit space? Most shows offer rooms just off the conventional hall floor that you can rent for meetings such as these.
- Introduce new products and/or services
Pro Tip: Social media and pre-show mailers are great tools for building a buzz about something new that you can unveil at the event.
- Demonstrate your product or service
Pro Tip: The show floor is a chance to demonstrate something that may not be possible using other marketing channels. Attendees don’t always have time to watch a long demonstration, so engage them with excited staff who demonstrate your product/service in a fun, informational and efficient manner.
- Recruit new employees
Pro Tip: Select show staff that are engaged, experienced, and a true reflection of what you are looking for in a potential candidate. Like-minded people will feel an instant connection with your team and organization.
Once you identify your objectives for your event, you can focus your energy on the tools necessary to encourage a positive ROO. Apple Rock can help you set those goals and determine the best course of action to meet them at your next event.
Alison James, Event Marketer & Brand Enthusiast
Alison has been with Apple Rock for 12 years. She is not only an industry expert, but also an experienced brand ambassador for all her clients. When she is not working hard for her clients she is enjoying the thrills of parenthood, along with her husband, to their 12 month old son.