Tag Archives: offline promotion

Tips on Marketing and Publicity for Exhibitors – Promoting your Exhibition

Your marketing and publicity should be part of your whole marketing plan for exhibiting. Trade shows are a powerful element of the marketing mix in that they enable you to have face to face conversations with your customers and prospects, and to gather sales leads.

Your business and brand needs to be known to potential customers who are attending the trade show. The attendees will gravitate towards the brands that are familiar, visible and readily available to them. You want as many of the right kind of attendees to come to your stand.

Image result for photos marketing exhibitions

You need to ensure that you meet the right people, set up productive meetings and drive traffic to your stand. To do this you need to make sure that your marketing is targeted to the right attendees: those who will be interested in your products and who could potentially lead to a sale.

Image result for photos marketing exhibitions

Depending on your budget there are different types of marketing and ways of promoting your exhibit at a trade show. Some are free and others are chargeable. There are also different ways of marketing and promoting your presence at a trade show.

We will look at the various ways of promoting your event in this tip blog  and then in the next blog tip we will look at the different types of traditional and on-line marketing that you should consider using.

When you start the planning process you need to finalise the theme of the exhibition. All the marketing and communications of the company exhibition and promotion should have the same branding and look-and-feel. All communication about the exhibition should make consistent use of the appearance and branding. If you are highlighting new products then the communications and graphics should reflect the same graphical design.

The Promotion of the Event

  • The marketing of your exhibition is not just about the promotion of the stand and brand but it is also integral to promoting your business, services, and expertise.
  • Whatever marketing methods you adopt make sure you measure the results. This is so that you can determine the most effective method of getting people to your stand and so that you can analyse your Return on Investment (ROI).
  • Make sure that all your promotion is highly focused and correctly targeted.
  • Consider all possible methods of communication because different people like to receive communication in different ways. Use the full range of traditional offline promotion as well as online promotion and social media.

We will outline the marketing and promotion of exhibitions in three sections:

  • Promotion through the Trade Show organisation. (This blog)
  • Traditional Marketing Media promotion. (next blog tip)
  • On-line, Social Media. (next blog tip)

Promotion through a Trade Show Organisation

If you are exhibiting at a trade show then you should not just rely on the organising company to promote the event because you want to stand out from the other competitors and companies who will be promoted at the same time. Do, however, take advantage of their promotional publication to advertise your company stand and products because they will use their large database of previous and new attendees who are already targeted into your market. Promotional opportunities provided by the organisers will vary from trade show to trade show but usually consist of:

  • Promotion of your company in their catalogue of exhibitors. This usually requires a short abstract about your company, what it is that you are promoting, a list of products, photos of the products, and stand location and contact details.
  • An entry onto their website again listing your company products and contact information. Remember products can be searched and products cross-linked.
  • PR article for their newsletter promotion.
  • Advertising on website or pre-event magazine.
  • Sponsorship opportunities. These will be chargeable, but your brand or company name will be promoted on banners, on part of the website, on promotion media and at the exhibition.
  • Taking advantage of speaker opportunities that may arise if the trade show is running an educational seminar or is associated with a specific conference connected to the market segment into which you are marketing.
  • Use the trade show logo on your in-house marketing material and emails to advertise that your company will be exhibiting.

In summary you need to use the best method of promoting your trade show attendance to your market and potential customers. The main point is to make your attendance at the show known so that those coming are aware of your presence and want to visit your stand. It does not matter how good your stand and products are if you don’t get footfall and generate leads to your products.

Tips how to run a Successful Conference: Event Management and Planning Logistics, The invitation Process

The Invitation Process

 The marketing and creativity side of the invitation process was covered in part 4 of tips; here we will concentrate on the process.

the invitation is not only a way of inviting delegates but also a way to confirm name and contact address of potential delegate and open a dialogue for further communications before and after the event.

for this you need a database, depending on the event this can be a database of your own employees, a prospect list from your CSR system, sales records, website inquiries about your products or services, commercial lists although these are not always so successful and you cannot always know how clean and up to date these are.  Third party lists from your partner or distributors, can also be invited.  Remember you need to invite far more people than you actually want to attend and there is often a 25% drop out rate.

Software products are available on the market for the actual process of administrating the attendees, and if you do several events a year it is worthwhile investing in a package.

The invitation mailing should be creative and follow the theme of the event, it should encourage acceptance, and give the essential information an attendee requires before deciding to attend:

  • Name, title, address of delegate
  • Date and location of event, map and rail/road/air connections
  • Start and finish times
  • Theme of the conference and why they should attend
  • Guest speakers if famous or a renowned authority on the subject
  • Personalisation from the conference sponsors
  • Reply device, with space for delegate contact details and any special needs

the timing of sending out the invitation is important and this should be built into your invitation plan and further reminders of the event should also be planned before the event and added to your time line.  Certain audiences may require at least three months notice of the event, with reminders sent out to the undecided as you near the event.

confirmation of attendance, this should be done immediately as you need to build up a communication channel to the delegate leading up to the event both to promote your company and also to reduce the inevitable drop-out rate.  Communication should be regular and involve email messages, news letters telephone and further details on the programme, joining instructions, travel and accommodation details, hospitality arrangements and other relevant information you would like the delegate to receive before the event.  If you are using web based registration you can add their own personal login and ability to communicate with other attendees and find out information on the event.

the registration system will be used to create badges for the delegates that can be created by the software package you are using and colour coordinated if required to show the different categories of delegates, sponsors, speakers, staff, exhibitors etc.

The delegate attendee list will also be created from the registration list and can be analysed and produced as required.  The contact list is most important if there is a crisis during the event and should be up to date and available to all those concerned in dealing with a situation if the needs arises.

Tips on How to Run a Successful Conference or Seminar – Part 4A How to Market a conference

The last blogs have reviewed the reasons for having a conference, how to plan for a conference and how to budget for a conference. There can be many business reasons why a company should consider having a conference, not least are that events are an important part of the marketing mix. We will now outline the main check points to consider when planning a conference:

Having decided on your objectives and established a relevant theme, you need to consider the conference or seminar logo and the overall event branding and the invitation process for delegates.

The Promotion of the event

  • This is the most important aspect of all the planning, as you need to make sure that you have the relevant number of attendees.
  • The marketing of your event is not just the promotion of the event but integral to promoting your business, services, and expertise.
  • What ever marketing methods you adopt make sure you measure the results, so that you know what is the most effective method of getting people to attend.
  • Make sure that all your promotion is highly targeted.
  • Consider all possible methods of communication as different people like to receive different methods of communication.  Use the full range of traditional offline promotion as well as online  promotion as well as registration method for the delegates:-

Offline promotion

  • Advertising in newspapers, trade press, effectiveness of the advertisement  will depend on the clarity of the advertisement,, perceived value and targeting the degree of benefits for a person to attend.  You need to have a properly organized advertising plan and campaign.
  • Direct mail – addressed to specific recipient, which allows one to be more targeted.  You need to think who your target market is and adapt your message and language accordingly.  Unaddressed mail can also be effective but again needs to be carefully targeted.  Leaflets are a good medium for unaddressed mail.
  • Leaflet drops
  • Posters
  • Postcards, can be used as teasers to announce the date
  • Telephone, good for marketing to existing clients
  • TV & radio advertising
  • Audio and video, produce a CD that may show some of the speakers and their expertise.
  • Business introducers, using  face to face communication
  • PR, promoting the event with a press release that needs to be newsworthy i.e. different, entertaining or significant to grab the editors attention.
  • General correspondence, make sure your event is mentioned in some shape or form on all correspondence that leaves the office, such as fax header, note pads, compliment slips, leaflets to include in any correspondence sent out.  You can also use giveaways to promote the event.
  • SMS messaging, short texts are great way of reminding attendees of the event, and sending updates of what is happening.

Online promotion

  • Email, is an excellent way to market your event if you already have permission to contact the customer or prospect, often the collection of contact details through the website for newsletters can be excellent in sending electronic invitations.  The event can be promoted on every email sent from the office with an additional line on the signature.
  • Website this can be used to promote all your events on your corporate website under a specific tab heading of events.  You can also now use external website specifically designed to promote your event, provide additional information on the event and register the attendees, automate confirmation and joining instructions and send reminders if people have not responded, as well as statistics of registration and the  attendees profile.
  • Pop-Ups, on your website to convince people that your seminar is worth attending.
  • Social Media, such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn
  • Phone Apps programmed for your event where delegates can link with other registered delegates and get the latest information and promotion

Further blogs on how to run a successful business event that has ROI will follow.  To receive these valuable ideas and make sure that you do not miss any of the articles we will deliver them to your in-box free, when you sign up.   The blogs will be full of tips and ideas, to help you and your business in event management.

Reference reading:

John G Fisher – How to run a Successful Conference
Philip Calvert – Successful Seminar Selling