Some businesses are taking a step back from tradeshows. They believe that tradeshows are a thing of the past. I beg to differ.
Things are changing, that is true, and marketing your business has changed too. With social media and the cost of print ads, we all need to be more creative with how to reach our audience.
So what is the answer? Even though many businesses feel they can market their business primarily through social media, the truth is that we still like human interaction. The missing link in online marketing is face-to-face interaction, which is why video is rocking the marketing world right now. Real conversation and the building of a relationship made through meeting a representative of a company trumps online marketing every time. Also being able to touch, and use the 5 senses to experience a product or service is essential.
Research shows that it is generally the decision makers who attend tradeshows. Tradeshows provide you the opportunity to speak directly to the decision maker and possibly build a relationship with them. This is especially true with the baby boomers.
Attending tradeshows to market your business is still the right approach. Yes, you do need to have new strategies and ways to reach your customers at the show. Building awareness is not the main goal for attending a tradeshow anymore.
Number one suggestion; pick a tradeshow that is drawing your perfect demographic. Being in every tradeshow that comes along may not be the answer, pick and choose and go all out to have the best booth and let everyone know you are displaying at the tradeshow. Use your social media to build relationships with the other vendors, cross promote and work on building that strong collaboration with the show and the other businesses before the show even starts.
Some stats for you:
The #1 reason for attending (not exhibiting) trade shows is to see new products. 92% of tradeshow attendees say they are looking for new products. It has been the number one reason to attend for 25 years! So trade shows are a great place to introduce or feature your newest products. Source: CEIR: The Role and Value of Face to Face - See more at: http://www.tsnn.com/news-blogs/16-powerful-stats-value-trade-shows#sthash.yrfXSSKa.dpuf
67% of all attendees represent a new prospect and potential customer for exhibiting companies. This means trade shows are always rich in new business targets for you. Source: Exhibit Surveys, Inc. - See more at: http://www.tsnn.com/news-blogs/16-powerful-stats-value-trade-shows#sthash.yrfXSSKa.dpuf
83% of exhibitors agreed that “Building, expanding brand awareness” is a high-priority marketing-related objective for trade shows. The next two objectives tied at 63%: “New product promotions, launches” and “Brand awareness reinforcement.” Source: CEIR Changing Environment Study - See more at: http://www.tsnn.com/news-blogs/16-powerful-stats-value-trade-shows#sthash.yrfXSSKa.dpuf
81% of tradeshow attendees have buying authority. Which means more than 4 out of 5 people walking the aisles are potential customers for exhibitors. Source: CEIR: The Spend Decision: Analyzing How Exhibits Fit Into The Overall Marketing Budget - See more at: http://www.tsnn.com/news-blogs/16-powerful-stats-value-trade-shows#sthash.yrfXSSKa.dpuf
Dianna Bowes is the founder of Fabulous@50 and the Creative Director of Be Fabulous! Magazine.
Dianna has won numerous awards such as the 2011 YWCA Women of Distinction Award (Turning Point category) 2014 Leaders of Tomorrow Business Award, 2015 Stevie Bronze - Canadian Entrepreneur of the Year. She is a creative soul, who loves connecting people and embracing life. Travel, great food, family, friends and a long bike ride on a sunny day is her definition of great life. For more information on Dianna Bowes click here.