Business Exhibitions & Visitor Events Are Huge Business. But Exhibitors Often Don’t Understand How to Make Exhibitions Work For Businesses & Fail to Get Good Results & ROI on Their Exhibition Spend.
A few days ago I went to an Exhibition and saw both good and bad practice. With the cost of exhibiting, staff travel and subsistence and all the other extras being so high, it pays to be aware of good practice and some of the pitfalls.
Last year I attended an exhibition and re-learnt a lesson I’ve taught for many years.
My mind went back to it today when a client asked for some advice on how to make exhibitions work for his business.
When you are one of dozens, or maybe hundreds, of businesses at an event you have to stand out from the crowd. Look at this early morning picture and tell me which stand you’d visit. The problem is they all look the same.
You have 5 seconds to attract visitors
Visitors often go to an event for a whole day. But as they slowly walk up and down the aisles you have 5-8 seconds to attract their attention. That is how long it takes to walk past your stand. Try it. Walk slowly across a room and see how long it takes to walk past the average two metre wide stand. Not long!
If the stand next to yours stands out they may not even notice you.
Now look at this exhibition stand
It may not be totally clear what they do but obviously it is about beer and whiskey.
This stand is much clearer than any of the others in the hall and will attract beer drinkers to take a second look, maybe stop to look at the different beers .. and get in conversation with the exhibitor.
That has to be much better than people walking by.
Before you email and ask what I did to make my stand stand out I’ll tell you.
Before the event I emailed lots of people to say I’d be there. I also ran an event workshop on marketing that saw a lot of pre-event bookings and at the end of the workshop invited people to visit my stand. I also sent out Facebook and Twitter posts as I ran the workshop (this was set up in advance and sent out automatically).
Finally my stand had a big screen that streamed YouTube videos of a hand writing and drawing pictures on the screen. People saw this and stopped as they had never seen this sort of thing before. My assistant started to tell everyone that it was all done by a small child we had sat under the table .. and people started to talk to us!
I have just completed reading Stefan’s book on the marketing of hospitality. I found it outstanding from both the strategic point of view Stefan adopted and the many practical suggestions he offered. And his wonderful, slightly quirky self shone through, which added delight to the entire experience. Check Molly’s Place, A Bar & Grill, in Grenada, MS a year from now and see how we are doing!
I have had the pleasure of working with Stefan on two occasions and was thoroughly impressed both times. His marketing knowledge is excellent and he has the ability to execute a task to a high standard all the way through to completion.
I've had the privilege of working with Stefan on two book projects, and I have also benefited from his marketing wisdom in a private mastermind group. The man is a consummate professional, and he backs it up with a hilarious sense of humor. I highly recommend him.
Stefan is very thorough in his research and understanding of a clients requirements. He has a proven record of delivering comprehensive strategic marketing plans that address education / FE issues critical to the ongoing success of a college. I would recommend considering Stefan for any project that involves strategic planning, communication or digital marketing.