I recently attended the Brisbane Boat Show where 2 things caught my eye the most but not before they caught the eye of my kids. Fusion blow up aliens were everywhere and blow up lifetubes (life saving tubes whatever you like to call them). These things were big enough so that they were noticed by anyone who seen them. Within seconds of entering the Convention centre my kids said “can we get one of those dad?” When we reached the fusion stand my heart sank as they were selling these things for $5 a pop……. I bought the kids one each anyway just to shut them up. I was then asked three times as we made our way through the expo “where do you get those from?” So they definately got the attention they were supposed to get.
If you are going to give something away make it a worthwhile item. I think lollies, balloons etc are these days just going to be seen as junk. Visitors are bored with that however will jump at anything that is a little different…. they may even pay for it.
2. Pre Marketing
A must do is to let people know before the event where your stand is. Use email campaigns, direct mail and social media to let existing clients know that you will be at the event and even better if you can give them a reason to come see you at stand number XX. Make sure you tell your customers verbally as well. It never hurts also to ask the event organisers if they can give you a plug in the marketing campaign they are running to promote the event.
3. Sponsor the Exhibition
Having your advertising on the signage within the event will also help. Most event coordinators will also publish a map or booklet in which a sponsors logo and business information will be prominent. Of course there is a cost associated with this but if you want to be recognised as a major player at the Expo it can bring results. Make sure you find out what opportunities there are to sponsor events and what you get for your money.
I doubt people would like to get naked at a tradeshow for a full body massage but I have often thought myself when halfway around a big exhibition “man I could do with a footrub right now!” Tired visitors will line up for it. A good foot massage, neck and shoulder massage or even calf muscle rubs are all something which can be easily performed at a tradeshow to attract visitors. On top of that it is at a time when visitors need it most.
There is no doubt that a magic show, a mascot, a juggler or street performer will get people to stop and watch at your stand. Finding the right type of performer to coincide with your business though can be difficult. I also wonder how difficult it would be for staff at a petroleum products tradeshow stand to connect with a client and keep the clients attention while the firebreather is blowing 6 foot flames in the background.
6. Promo Girls/Guys
When I was younger and single I may have been open to stopping for a chat with the cute babes standing in front of a display with their big boots and short skirts and glittery jackets that are half open. I guess if I were at a tradeshow which was for something fun like a leisure boating or a health and fitness exhibition this tactic may seem appropriate however I find nothing more frustrating than approaching a tradeshow stand which has something specialised or requires expert knowledge only to have to talk to a 19 year old Lady GaGa lookalike who can only respond to my questions with generic responses regarding the weather and is more interested in forcing me to take a brochure and ask me about my weekend……….