Exhibitions and trade shows are a great way to promote your company, to gain new clients and retain existing ones.  Below are some top tips to help you get it right!

1. Tell Everyone!

Let everyone know you are going to an event, the more the merrier, right? Research has shown that 76% of visitors attending a show will plan which companies they want to visit prior to the event. If a visitor doesn’t know you’re going to be there, they won’t come and see your stand, so let them know where you are and why they should come and visit you.

2. Preparation is Key

If you have had a stressful morning, whether it be down to traffic or a broken banner, you don’t want to carry that into meeting your new clients. Make sure to de- stress with a coffee and plan some basic background answers for passers-by so you are prepared when the customers start to arrive.

3. The Location

A good spot to set up is near or in sight of the entrance, this will guarantee you catch the customers eye as soon as they walk in and make them more likely to come and see you. Alternatively, you could set up in the busiest area of the event, here you’re likely to pick up passers-by just because your stand is near them.

4. Presentation

This one is slightly obvious, but visuals are important. The average time it takes for a visitor to walk past your stand and decide whether to stop and talk is 3-5 seconds, so a good first impression is crucial. The way both you and your stand look could encourage or deter customers from visiting you. Make sure your exhibition is eye-catching and you are dressed smartly. *

* A note to the business women attending events- although heels may look good, after eight hours standing up, your feet will thank you for choosing flat shoes.

5. Freebies

We all know everyone loves to get a freebie from their day out, and exhibition stands are known for their bowls of branded pens, keyrings and notebooks. But stick to displaying the simple gifts, don’t give all your good gifts away to the passers-by, save them for the more valuable clients who show an interest in investing in your time and what your company has to offer.

6. Competitions

Some people need the extra push to get involved, and competitions do just that. Set up a ‘Guess how many sweets are in this jar’ game and give out prizes unrelated to your business, like an iPad for example. Use marketing to your advantage by getting people to write their answers on the back of their business cards- now you have their details too!

7. Flyers and Business Cards

Passers-by often grab information on their way past a stand so they can review them later. Having business cards and flyers ready for their eager hands means that your company information is likely to stay in their minds, or their wallets! Cards and flyers are likely to be read after the show, even if no contact is made during the event. Make sure they are engaging and contain all the relevant information about what you do. If you get chance to chat to them, make sure you explain how your work could benefit them to ensure they remember you and consider your company in the future.

8. Brochures

If the customer is showing  signs that they’re really interested, give them a brochure. This allows them to see a wider range of your products and at greater detail, meaning you could potentially get more custom and you are more likely to be remembered afterwards.

9. Drinks and Nibbles

The best way to please customers! Choose wisely though- they may not want to wait around for your coffee machine to finish making a fancy Late, so maybe water and a bowl of sweets or chocolates is a better option. While eating your nibbles, customers will be taking in their surroundings so this would help with advertising.

10. Follow up!

Following up contacts made at the show is your number one priority.  You have collected their details at the event so make sure to call them or email them a week later to ensure you are still in their minds. That way you can start to build your relationship with them. Otherwise, you spent all that time finding new customers on achy feet for nothing.

And one last thing….For any follow up emails, why not add a photo of your set up at the event to your email signature? This will help to remind people where they saw you and who you are.

If you have a forthcoming event or exhibition then why not give the team at Raphael Design a call to arrange a free consultation. Contact us on 01543 261220 or send us an email

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The above information was taken from an article published in the PPD Magazine Issue 91 March 18.




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