ESCAPING THE EXHIBITION MARKET STALL TRAP
It is said ‘Britain is a nation of shopkeepers’ and never has this been more evident than when I tour exhibitions and see how companies exhibit themselves at B2B trade shows.
The notion is that all a company needs to do is to buy an exhibition stand, set out their products, display their brand, a few posters here and there.. and simply sit back and wait for people to come on to their exhibition stand to do business and purchase – is wrong! This is not an exhibition stand. This is what I call is a ‘market stall’, you have fallen into the ‘market stall trap’. This is not an exhibition stand for today’s exhibition and trade show marketing environment.
Essential Exhibition Facts –
- Exhibitions are a highly competitive business environments – fact.
- Exhibitions attract visitors to the event with hundreds of exhibitors attending and limited time to attend – why should visitors spend their valuable time on your stand and not other exhibition stands?
- Exhibition visitors want we we all want – benefits. They need to IMMEDIATELY see a good reason why they should stop and spend their valuable event time on your exhibition stand with you.
- In passing your exhibition stand, if visitors cannot immediately see (at a glance) the benefit for them to stop and visit your stand – they will pass your stand by and you lose the potential for a sales lead and contact – this is where you need effective exhibition stand communications and positioning strategy to connect with event footfall..
- Exhibitors make the mistake of giving their company name and brand/logo too much prominence on the stand usually taking central prime position – wrong. Exhibition visitors have not the time to seek out what you do and what you offer. They will keep walking – proven fact.
- Exhibition stand position is crucial to event success – location, location, location.
- The term ‘exhibition stand’ is wrong – you cannot afford to just ‘stand’ around – you only have a limited time to attract passing visitors, engage and get the business done – or someone else will.
- Each exhibition requires a pre-show, show, post show strategy for success, realise maximum potential and realise (exceed) ROI – fact.
- Each exhibition requires an organised managed sales strategy – a properly conceived exhibition stand is a ‘selling environment’ for the customers, stand visitors, products, brand, message, offer and to generate company business.
- Each exhibition requires forward planning up to 12 months ahead – essential fact – if you do not have 12 months planning time then a different exhibitions ‘Parkinson’s Law’ approach is required.
Returning from taking the lead at a major automation trade show in Mumbai the client typically generated 30-50 sales leads over a 3 day exhibition. Adopting my exhibition strategy and management the client generated over 250 sales leads over the same 3 days of the same exhibition-fact.