Tradeshow Marketing: Debunking 6 Common Myths page 1
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Tradeshow Marketing: Debunking 6 Common Myths

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    Debunking 6 Tradeshow Marketing Myths

    In ancient times, people found long ivory horns washed up on ocean beaches and wonderedwhat creature could have left behind such a beautiful object. From this, the legend of theunicorna mythical flying horse with a horn on its headwas born. In reality, the horn camenot from a mythical creature at all, but from a narwhal, a relative of the walrus.

    Okay, so what do unicorns and narwhals have to do with tradeshow marketing? If the idea ofprofitable tradeshow marketing seems more like a mythical creature to you than an effectiveway to target potential customers and build your business, then perhaps youve given in to oneof these six tradeshow marketing myths:

    Debunking 6 Tradeshow Marketing Myths

    1. One tradeshow is the same as any other.

    If you believe this, then your tradeshow marketing efforts are already in trouble. The fact is thatevery tradeshow has a specific audience, and if you dont know how to reach them, youreunlikely to have much success.

  • Early in the planning process, look into the attendee and exhibitor data for any shows youreconsidering attending to find out whether that show is the right one for your brand.

    2. There is lots of downtime after hours.

    Although tradeshows are often held in locations known for their tourist or leisure activities (e.g.New York, Vegas or Orlando), youre not there to party. Youre there for one reason and onereason only: to develop relationships, build new contacts, and turn those contacts intocustomers.

    Every activity you undertake at a tradeshow should support this. Are we saying that the socialgatherings that are so often part of trade shows arent important? No, were actually saying theopposite. Attending after-hours events associated with the show can be a huge opportunity tonetwork, and it goes without saying that your approach to these events should remainprofessional. Take a pass on that second glass of wine, and listen carefully to the sound ofopportunity knocking.

    3. Theres nothing special about tradeshow marketing.

    Many companies think that tradeshow marketing simply means taking a booth, some marketingcollateral and a few samples to the convention center. Wrong.

    Companies need to fully understand why they attend tradeshows: its not just to stand around inthe booth handing out pamphlets. Its to actively engage attendees, capture leads, and maybeeven meet with prospects that youve already scheduled appointments with. Theres more tothis than meets the eye, so youll need to do your research and strategize well in advance toensure success.

    4. Anyone can staff a booth.

    Although its true that technical expertise isnt necessarily a requirement to be an effective tradeshow booth staffer, your booth personnel should be well-trained in what yourand theirgoalsare for each and every show. Theres nothing worse than investing in a booth, shipping, andtravel expenses, only to have your booth staff standing idle as attendees walk by.

    5. Tradeshows are a waste of time.

    Exhibitors whove been unsuccessful at tradeshows in the past may feel that they are a wasteof time, or that they take away from more important business activities. But consider this:according to a recent survey, more than 75% of tradeshow attendees ask for quotes at theshow, and more than 22% are likely to sign a purchase order. Does that really sound like awaste of time?

    The truth is that tradeshows are like most activities: what you get out of them is directlyproportional to what you put in. If you approach a show as an opportunity to gather leads,develop relationships and make some important sales, you are more likely to get those results.

  • 6. Smaller brands cant make a splash at tradeshows.

    Although its easy to feel like a small fish in a big pond when it comes to tradeshow marketing,dont let that persuade you that trade shows are only for big brands. Smaller brands simplyneed to be more strategic as they select and prepare for the shows that they will exhibit at. Ifyour budget wont let you make a big splash at the biggest shows, consider regional or moretargeted shows.

    Dont give into these trade show myths. If you need more facts to encourage you to get outthere, keep in mind that 81% of tradeshow attendees have buying authority, and 92% of themare looking for new products. 46% of them will only attend one show. These facts mean itsimportant to take every show seriously as a real marketing and sales opportunity for yourbusiness.

    Is your brand planning to do any tradeshow marketing this year? Why or why not? Let us knowabout it in the comments.Post originally located at:

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