Should you attend exhibitions?
The clear, resounding truth is YES, you should. Exhibitions and trade shows can offer a wealth of benefits to your business and missing out on them may also mean missing out on great opportunities for growth.
Exhibitions can be incredibly rewarding forms of marketing when done the right way, so what exactly are the advantages of attending an exhibition?
1. Meet and Connect with Potential Clients
Networking is a biggie, no matter which industry you’re in. Growing your audience means growing your business, and attending an exhibition helps with that. Standing out from the crowd and getting your voice heard can be challenging, and, if you’re trying to get new clients with just cold calling and emails, for example, you may find yourself being ignored.
Meeting someone face-to-face, however, it’s another matter. A trade show allows you to meet with a potential customer and connect with them and, while some people will buy your products during the exhibition, others won’t – but they may be a lot more responsive to your sales pitch once they know you.
2. Increase Your Brand Awareness
Attending exhibitions allows you to get in front of your target audience, which is the perfect opportunity to showcase your brand, boost your business’ image, gain media (and social media) exposure, and, overall, draw attention to your business.
While you’re at the exhibition, make sure to give away freebies with your branding and message, as that can help to increase brand awareness and exposure.
Exhibitions can be a great way to stay up-to-date with what’s going on in your industry at any given moment.
3. Gain More Knowledge of Your Industry
This is because relevant people and businesses in your field are often in attendance, so you can see what everyone is up to and which trends are growing – basically, it allows you to see how the industry is shifting. It also allows you to gain knowledge of new products and resources and make business decisions that may include them.
4. Benefit from Cost-Effective Marketing
Instead of having to spend a big budget on advertising your services and products, exhibitions can be an inexpensive way to promote your business. After all, you are showcasing what you and your business are about to an audience that is more than receptive, meaning you don’t have to go out of your way (and budget) to draw them in with TV ads or other expensive marketing efforts.
5. Close Deals
While this is not always the case, you may also have the opportunity to sell to your target market during an exhibition or trade show. When you have a gathering of people already interested in the products and services you provide – and looking for great deals, which are often found in these types of events –, it’s easier to sell to them.
Compare that with emailing a Purchasing Manager or speaking to them on the phone, for example; they’re likely to have responsibilities to deal with and may not be as interested as they are when attending an exhibition in their field
6. You Learn What Works and What Doesn’t
Exhibitions provide you with the chance to check out what your competitors are doing, as well as to see which direction your industry is going. Have a look at other exhibitors and note down things like their sales strategy or their price lists, as that can help you to form a picture of what is working and what isn’t – especially when you compare it to your own efforts.
This means exhibitions can help you to streamline your business strategy, as well as your marketing!
7. Launch a New Product
What better time to launch a new product or service than at an exhibition or trade show? When you introduce something new to your target market, don’t forget to explain what you’re offering and why it’s unique and innovative.
You also have the opportunity to gauge the success of the launch and the product during such an event, as you’re able to quickly get feedback from your audience.
There are many benefits to be had when going to trade shows and exhibitions, so don’t waive these opportunities when they come up!