Interestingly, many surveys and studies have shown that business technology marketers use trade shows more than any other tactic to promote business. Sometimes, the planning system is extremely complex and arrangements are made up to a year before the event takes place. In recognition of the importance of the event, companies are willing to pay for several employees to visit trade fairs despite the travelling distances being sometimes quite large. However, business representatives of companies of all sizes are very rarely satisfied with the result of trade fairs. The main reason for such negative feedback is that they tend to view the fairs as single events rather than see them as part of a bigger picture in the company’s image. There is a number of tips to avoid such disappointment.
Firstly, it is imperative that marketers see the right objectives of the fair. The objective is often viewed wrongly as merely showing up, or promoting a new product to anybody who happens to be passing by. The main objective should nearly always be to get in contact with the right customers. After all, the customers are more important than anybody else at the fair. A concrete plan should always be drawn up before travelling to such an event.
Secondly, let’s not neglect the importance of choosing the right show. A common mistake for organisers is to place too much stress on the relevance of the conference title. The title is often a detail, whereas emphasis should be placed on the question of who is attending.
Further vital elements of preparation involve carrying out pre-show marketing investment schemes, i.e. contacting potential customers through direct mail or email and simultaneously doing research into their needs and demands. It is said that the vast majority of work at trade fairs involves preparation, with the work on the day being of less importance.