As someone heavily involved in putting together a couple of marketing events for 2012, I have been interested in branding at events.
The way a business represents itself at a tradeshow can greatly affect its reputation amongst its target audience. Tradeshows are the time for big announcements and making a business known in their preferred industry.
- Banner Stands
Not only are advertising graphics such as banner stands often convenient and easy to transport, they are also much more flexible when it comes to creating a display at a tradeshow. With the more flexible types of stand such as pop up banners, it can be very easy to set a display into different floor arrangements, as well as organize it to create some positive contrast between the business and its competitors.
Utilising display stands will also provide the opportunity to make a business stand out physically as well as visually. A much more three-dimensional display can be created with a pop-up banner as opposed to a more traditional stand.
- Outreach Campaign
Even with the greatest exhibition stand in the world, it needs to have the visual appeal to attract tradeshow attendees from a distance. This is known as an ‘outreach campaign’. It is important for a business to use a slightly different strategy to their competitors, who often deploy foot soldiers to flyer indiscriminately in the hallways. In order for a business to distinguish itself and stand out, it can branch out and use less recognised strategies such as multimedia.
Due to technological advancements, it is now easier than ever for a business to reach its audience with mobile phone applications and downloads. These are inexpensive giveaways - although the upfront cost might be a little more than promotional products such as key rings, they are there to be given away indefinitely. Specific people who might be more willing to make a purchase can also be targeted with these applications, rather than purchasing bulk promotional items that could be picked up by disinterested customers.
The overall company presence will also make a huge difference to tradeshow performance. For the purposes of this argument, we can define "overall presence" as the time spent around other tradeshow participants that doesn’t involve a hard sell opportunity. That is, during speakers, lunch and other extracurricular events, a business ought to be interacting with people on a personal level without selling to them at all.
If there is any other time that people remember more than the hard sell set up, it is the time in which a business representative can prove themselves to be sociable and interactive with the community that they wish to appeal to. This can give an edge when it comes to attendees remembering a brand; regardless of the technology and banner stand set ups, business is still a highly personal affair.
With an appropriate and visually appealing banner stand, an effective and unique outreach campaign, and to simply be present at the event, tradeshows can deliver the desired results of attracting new business without resorting to hard sell tactics.