Trade shows are either events to be feared or exciting opportunities. After all, you’re potentially getting WAY more than your money’s worth in great face-to-face PR. But it’s also face-to-face, and it requires a lot of schmoozing. Those who don’t like public speaking may very well be quaking in their boots. But have no fear, trade shows are painless and even fun events, as long as you’ve got all the necessary gear and a great booth to back you up. So don’t waste time! Consider these tips.
Plan your booth
Your first step should be to gather a team from your company or a group of trusted designers and begin planning your booth. Make sure you know what size you’re being allotted, then go for a design that’s eye-catching but also reassuring. Garish colors might draw attention, but not the kind you probably want.
Create a media kit
Creating a media kit (sometimes called a press kit) is a breeze, although its contents will vary depending on your industry. You’ll want to make sure it includes a brief biography of your organization, samples of your product or services, photos and/or a catalogue, web information, business cards, already published press reviews and extensive information. You can also include fun promotional products. Personalized pens or custom magnets bearing your brand or product name are great ideas.
Order extra tradeshow giveaways
Along with the media kit’s promotional items, invest in some other giveaways to draw attention to your booth. Custom T-shirts are always a popular choice, but there’s a slew of great promotional tradeshow giveaways to choose from.
Practice your routine (but not too much!)
Okay, here comes the hard part. You need a spiel. The trick is to not be too practiced or too obviously repeat your pitch by rote. Instead, make sure you’ve got the basics down and go over your routine with friends, family and coworkers (have them ask you questions). What’s most important is that you be friendly, fun and confident. Trusting in yourself will help others trust in you.
Break a leg
Remember, trade shows aren’t all bad – chances are you’ll even have fun! Have faith in your brand, product and/or company, then watch as the immense interest swells. You’ll be a trade show veteran in no time!