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How to Prepare for Your First Trade Show Exhibit

by Anastasia

If your company is thinking about hosting its first exhibit at a trade show, you might feel overwhelmed trying to figure out the logistics. Where should you start? How will you get people to check out your booth? What does your business stand to gain?

Here are a few trade show tips to help make your first exhibit a success.

1. Decide on Your Goals and Budget

The first thing to do when preparing for your first trade show exhibit is to establish your goals. What do you hope to achieve?

  • Are you mostly looking to raise people’s awareness of your business?
  • If your clients are mostly other businesses, is your goal is to network with other exhibitors?
  • Are you there to generate new leads or see how other businesses in your industry market themselves?

You can’t design an effective booth until you know what you’re trying to achieve. Start there. Then, determine what your budget is for the event and decide how to allocate your funds. Trade show exhibit rentals can help you cut costs, while also offering several other benefits.

2. Choose the Right Booth Location

Booth location matters. You want to be in the most visible area you can find. Here are some tips to help you choose the right spot for your booth:

  • Reserve your spot as early as possible.
  • Spots near major sponsors or other exhibits people are likely to flock to are a good choice.
  • Consider locations near the entrance because your booth will be the first one everyone sees.

Each trade show’s setup is different, so review the layout carefully and identify areas that are more likely to have a lot of foot traffic before you pay to reserve a spot.

3. Design Your Trade Show Exhibit Booth

When it comes to exhibiting at trade shows, you can’t just wing it. If you want your booth to perform well, you have to put serious thought into its design.

Come up with a theme related to your company or the promotion you plan on running. Then, decide if you’re going to build your own trade show display or hire a trade show design firm to assist you with banners, tables, backdrops, or more customized displays.

4. Come Up With Your Exhibit Marketing Plan

Once you’ve set your goals, you can build an exhibit marketing plan around them. This is a way of organizing and implementing your ideas for attracting people to your booth and making yourself more memorable.

This includes things like:

  • Promotional giveaways
  • Attractive visuals
  • Email list sign-ups
  • Videos
  • Interactive displays
  • Product demonstrations

Choose the tactics that best align with your business and goals.

5. Prepare Your Team

Finally, you’ll want to choose the right team to represent your company at your booth. You can help them prepare by going over the demonstrations that they’ll be expected to perform as well as preparing them for the types of questions attendees might have.

If you plan to bring in outside help, you should start this process earlier so that you have time to bring them up to speed.

Your first trade show exhibit might feel nerve-wracking, but it can also be a fun and effective way to promote your business. A little preparation can go a long way in helping you generate buzz in your industry and build a fresh set of warm leads.

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