7 reasons why you need to exhibit at a trade show this year
Even in today’s world of social media networking and mobile computing, when it comes to ROI for your sales & marketing efforts, it’s hard to beat the face to face element of trade shows. If you’re asking, “Why should I exhibit at a trade show this year?” consider the following seven benefits of trade shows.
Actually, all of the answers to “Why should I exhibit at a trade show?” relate to this first reason: Personal contact is still the best way to build relationships. Electronic communication is wonderfully convenient and efficient, but face-to-face is always more powerful.
Think about it: If you shake someone’s hand and discuss business for a few minutes, aren’t you much more likely to respond to further sales efforts than if you had simply received a promotional email? One result of the digital revolution is that people are bombarded now more than ever with messages of all types—it takes something special to make a message stand out, and the personal touch of a trade show exhibit fits the bill.
For executives, trade shows are a chance to network with other executives in ways that will prove valuable—and not necessarily in sales. For example, a supplier relationship could take root as key people meet and informally discuss opportunities for mutual profit. Big deals can come from trade shows.
For everyone representing the company, trade booths and the surrounding event provide an ideal occasion to begin and develop mutually advantageous business relationships.
You shouldn’t only ask yourself, “Why should I exhibit at a trade show?” you should also ask “why should I attend a trade show?” The reason is to learn about what’s happening in the industry—new products, services, technologies, and competitors! You don’t have to exhibit to gain this benefit; you can simply attend. But why waste the opportunity to do both? If you’re going to pay the expense of having the right people attend, the ROI from exhibiting will help offset the cost.
Particularly if a trade show is a big deal in your industry (vertical or horizontal), your absence will give the impression that your company is disengaged from the industry. And you’ll be giving your competitors the opportunity to favorably compare their products and services against yours without any opportunity to present the advantages of your offerings. When you’re not at an event, you not only lose the chance to affect perceptions of your company, you give that power to your competitors.
Trade shows are excellent for the launch of a new product, service, or marketing campaign. Combined with other marketing (e.g., social media, direct mailing, advertising), you can begin building anticipation for your exhibit months before the show. With a little exhibit creativity and public relations work, you might be able to get some positive press, too. The importance of this type of buzz in brand building can’t be overemphasized.
At a trade show, you can get hundreds of qualified leads in a matter of hours—a rate not possible through any telecommunication method. You’ll know the number of legitimate leads will be relatively high because that’s the nature of a trade show—only the people who are directly involved in that industry attend, and once there, they will seek out the booths they’re genuinely interested in.
When answering the question, “Why should I exhibit at a trade show?” don’t overlook the actual sales that can occur at these events. Depending on the product or service, trade shows can be a highly effective tool to get immediate conversions, particularly with enticing promotional offers.
Are you ready to start exploring the benefits that exhibiting at trade shows can have for your business? We’re happy to help! Contact GraphiColor Exhibits today for a complimentary trade show evaluation.