You’ve made the decision and investment to be where the latest tradeshow action is. Your exhibition stand is looking brighter than before and you’re delighted with the way your brand is standing out.
Yet, there are so many other marketing aspects to consider when present at an event – all with the key objective of driving traction, awareness and ultimately, new business.
Your marketing activity around your exhibition stand starts way before you’re on the stand at the tradeshow or exhibition. There’s marketing to do – pre, during and indeed post your event to ensure that you turn all those chats, eyeballs and positive buying signals into new business.
In this article we look at 5 simple ways you can integrate social media marketing into your exhibition marketing to get the conversation started and keep it bubbling along, long after the event has ended.
- Get connected. Do people attending the event know you’re going to be there? Be sure to tell your clients and prospects that you’re going to be at the exhibition or tradeshow. Add posts to your social media channels that make it clear where you are and how people can come and get involved with you on your exhibition stand. If you’re running a talk at the show and people have to pre-register – be sure to grab their social media handles as part of the registration process. That way you can start to connect with them before the event – tag them and tell them you’re looking forward to speaking to them – and encourage them to drop by the stand and say ‘Hi’. Generally, you can keep your social audiences updated on what’s going to be happening at the event, and even ask questions and start engaging before the event has even started.
- Jump in on the Hashtag. Most exhibitions now have their own hashtag – think #MWC2020 or #BusWorld19 #websummit19. The hashtag is a great way to engage with everyone attending or engaged with the event in any other way – pre, during and post the event.
- Get showcased. There are now some really innovative and highly practical uses of social media activity at play when it comes to ‘during the event’ activity. Speakers are often encouraged to share their Twitter or Instagram tags so that audiences can interact with them during talks, raising questions for them to answer in Q&As. There are also ‘social notice boards’ whereby the latest tweets using the hashtag get mentioned. This gives you the opportunity to keep your brand bubbling along with the conversation. Share video, share images, stories – be the ‘man on the ground’ roving reporter showcasing what’s happening on your stand or at a talk your hosting. It’s likely that the show hosts will share and retweet your content if it’s great – so keep in on the live action as it happens.
- Create a social database. Back to jumping on the hashtag… – create a Twitter List of all the people using the exhibition show hashtag. That way you can tune in to all the hashtag chatter specific to the event. This is a great way to reach and engage with others at the event – either those that used the hashtag or mentioned the event name or retweeted etc. This way you get to collect a list of all those engaging with the hashtag – so that you can see the specific chatter going on around the event. Useful for during and post the event for any follow ups.
- Continuous conversations. Social media is great for continuing conversations once the ‘party’ has ended. Many valuable relationships start on social media. Create the opportunity to stay connected with people who have attended the event, been at your stand or engaged with you perhaps at one of your talks. Give visitors a reason to stay connected – perhaps there’s something you are going to follow up with – eg: competition winner – or if you gave a talk, there are going to be some slides that you are going to share – or perhaps a live Q&A sessions over on Facebook – so share your questions with us. Whatever it is that you can use to encourage the conversation to continue – then get creative and build it in to your event marketing activity.
These are just a few very simple ways you can integrate social media into your exhibition marketing activities – so get creative – and think about what you can be doing pre, during and post the event to maximise on your investment.
If you’d like to take your exhibition stand or tradeshow presence to another dimension, then our 4D team would love to hear from you Email Suzanne Malhotra on firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on +44(0)1494 680088. Visit www.4d-design.co.uk to see our work, creds and to get in touch.