The big trade show is coming up and your head has been spinning with awesome ideas for your exhibit. Not so fast though, a crucial step in ensuring that your trade show experience ends up being worth the time and money is focusing in on one or two goals you would like to accomplish post-show. Many companies make the mistake of having too many goals and their direction becomes watered down, leaving them with a mediocre, lackluster exhibit.

Here are 8 questions to help you establish your top goals for the next trade show:

Do you want your exhibit to align with your current marketing plan?

Some companies use trade shows as an opportunity to launch new marketing techniques and brand personality traits. This can sound like an exciting goal, but make sure that it’s the right time and place before you make a drastic change. If you’ve been talking about a re-vamp for some time, the trade show might be the perfect place to experiment. However, if the thought comes about because someone in the creative meeting has a great idea for a fun, interactive experience, or some form of entertainment that will draw people towards your booth, check in to make sure this grand idea coincides with the company’s marketing strategy. It’s only a good idea if it aligns with your overall marketing goals.

Are you launching a new product or service?

Does the upcoming trade show also mark the grand entrance of your new product or service? If so, you’ll want to make it the centerpiece of your booth. People love novelty, that’s just a fact. The same way your interest piques when a new TV show is added to your Netflix queue, the trade show attendees will be highly intrigued by your company debuting something new. Everyone loves to investigate the latest and greatest draw. If you build your exhibit concept around your new product alone, you’ll no doubt have a successful experience at the next trade show.

By how much are you hoping to increase sales through trade show interactions?

If sales are your primary objective for your next trade show, be sure to have a quiet area somewhere in your exhibit you can use to chat up potential prospects. You’ll also want to have a lot of pamphlets and packages of information on hand that people can leaf through in case they’re interested.

Are you hoping to educate the trade show audience on your product or service?

If you’re a start-up or lesser-known company, your top priority may be educating people on what you’re all about. In this case, a great strategy is to have several reps on hand to answer questions and have plenty of information available at your booth that attendees can take with them. Be careful of assuming that people will be interested based on your product. Putting a ton of effort and focus into the education of your product/service, especially if you’re new to the game, is a great goal to focus on and you’ll find that the time and money you invest in this particular avenue is well worth it in the end.

Are you looking to expand your contact list?

One topic that might come up while setting trade show goals is the amount of email addresses you hope to acquire for your contact list. Offering different activities like photo booths, personality quizzes, or interactive games are perfect opportunities to acquire email addresses. For example, at the end of a photo booth session, the prospect could type in their email address to receive the photo. In order to enter a trivia contest, the prospect could tap in their email address on a touch screen. This is one of the best ways to reach your goal of expanding your contact list.

How many new clients do you hope to obtain from this show?

When setting trade show goals, it’s a good idea to nail down how many new clients or business partners you’d like to sign on with you. If you’re hoping to expand your roster in a big way, there are several factors to keep in mind. Those with smaller budgets should prioritize education and staffing. Those with larger budgets can splurge on fun extras like games or attractions to really get business booming.

Are you there to research your competition?

When setting trade show goals, you might choose to focus on scouting out the competition. If this is the case, you may want to get a pass for an employee to do it for you. Have them visit the other booths and take note of different strategies you’re competitors are trying. It’s a great way to collect information that can help inform your own company’s plan!

Are you hoping to increase booth attendance?

Setting trade show goals requires careful thought and consideration, but one goal that seems to resonate with almost every company is to attract as many attendees to the booth as possible. Unique exhibit elements and attractions are the best way to do this. Don’t be afraid to think out of the box! At Evo Exhibits, our team of experts can help you bring your next trade show booth to the next level. Contact us today to start brainstorming!

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