Trade shows, fairs and events are often seen as an opportunity for businesses to showcase their products or service to a large audience. To exhibit.
However, they are much more than that. Trade shows are essentially hundreds of client meetings packed into a single venue.
In this article we will dive into benefits of trade shows and shed light on how they are essentially a series of client meetings in disguise. We’ll end with 6 quick tips to book more client meetings.
First of all, trade shows (and other face-to-face activities) are all about building deep trust and meaningful relationships with guests.
Each interaction at a trade show or in-person event, whether it’s a conversation at a booth or a formal meeting in an assigned room, is an opportunity for businesses to engage with guests on a personal level, who already has shown an interest in that specific industry or niche.
No other marketing channel or activity allows for this in the same way.
Trade shows also provide a unique platform for businesses to showcase their products or service in an interactive manner with live demonstrations of their products, allowing guests to see, touch, and experience them firsthand. To really get all the senses going.
From this, they can get feedback directly from guests, which in return teaches them about their pain points, challenges, and preferences that they can use in the follow-up process and to improve their offer.
Trade shows and events offer a unique opportunity for networking.
Attendees, including potential customers, industry experts, and business partners, come from all over the world to meet, providing an excellent opportunity for businesses to make connections they may not have had access to otherwise and expand their network of contacts.
These interactions are invaluable for businesses as they can lead to new business opportunities, collaborations, and partnerships, making trade shows true treasures of client meetings in disguise.
It’s also worth mentioning that trade shows can be a cost-effective way to host multiple client meetings in a short span of time.
Instead of traveling to multiple locations to meet clients individually, businesses can bring their products, services, and ambassadors to a single venue and book numerous client meetings.
This not only saves time and resources, but also allows businesses to reach a wider audience and maximize their client engagement efforts in a short timeframe.
With explicit goals and a well-defined target group, motivated staff, and systematic (and digital) collection of leads, the follow-up will be piece of cake. The only thing it requires is that you have complete control over these 5 areas:
Which leads do you need to take home to achieve your goals – what characterizes a good, hot lead for you?
What information do you need to collect about your guests/leads, in order to be able to follow up purposefully – what do you need to remember to get answers to and permission for?
What will you follow up with and how will you send out the material? Have brochures, prices, pdfs, etc. ready before you leave.
How do you collect leads to streamlining the following-up process – do you have the right (digital) tools available?
Who does what, when? How do you easily and quickly get your leads into your CRM so that they are part of the existing sales process?
Easy and targeted follow-up starts before the fair. Mindset, ownership, internship, and time in the calendar must be aligned and fine-tuned so that your promises do not become unmanageable to keep when you return from the fair.
And just to return to my friend from the Euro Shop – my path to becoming a customer with him, could have been much smoother if he had been completely focused on the above 5 areas – and had he kept what he promised …
Having a well-trained staff can make all the difference in ensuring the right skills, mindset, and tools to be confident and excel at the fair.