Are you getting your message across?

By Steve Lawrence

Of all the things you have to think about when planning for an event, your message is the most important.  The message you convey to stand visitors and passers-by gives them an idea of your organisation, what you do and the value they can get out of doing business with you.  In most cases, people will form an idea about your business and its people within a matter of seconds, you need to use all available channels to shape that idea and make sure that the message you put out there is the right one.

There are a number of ways you can communicate your message when exhibiting; here are our top 5:

Interactive Media

Allowing customers to really engage with your brand during an event can be achieved through interaction that stretches beyond face-to-face communication.  Making use of interactive technology such as touchscreen presentations, augmented reality and social walls drives deeper engagement and emotional connections between people and your business.  Rather than just telling them your message, let them experience and immerse themselves in it through hands-on interaction.  The more experiential your exhibition stand is, the more likely people are to take in your message and engage with it.

Collateral

Don’t let your leads go away from your stand empty-handed. Perhaps you had a great conversation with them and they expressed interest in your business, therefore you want to make it as easy and as attractive as possible for them to look you up, research your business and even contact you after the event.  Get creative with this.

Live Events

Demonstrations and presentations serve as visual cues and are very useful in attracting visitors to your stand.  Don’t just tell strangers what your business does – show them.  Sending out a limited number of “early-bird” or VIP invites to pre-register for live events throughout the day such as demos, seminars or talks with a guest speaker will optimise engagement.  Nothing drives peoples’ interest more than the idea that they are the first to see something exclusive and special, particularly if you create a sense of urgency around it e.g. “Only a few tickets left!”

Your Staff

Your staff will be the first interaction many people have with your business so use this to your advantage.  Ensure each team member shares a consistent, clear message – not only in the words they say but in how they dress, act and engage.  While you don’t want your staff to churn out exactly the same script word-for-word, it is good practice to ensure they are aware of the key points they need to get across when engaging with their audience.  Make an impact by integrating your staff’s wardrobe into your messaging.  Anyone walking by the booth area may ask why you are dressed differently; another excuse to talk about your theme and message.  As well as drawing people in and enticing visitors to engage with your stand, it will ensure that your business will linger in their mind once they leave the event, which leads onto the last point…

Creating a Lasting Impression

The majority of people at your event will have seen a lot of stands, talked to a lot of people and collected a lot of business cards, so the chances are they are not going to remember every single encounter.  Make sure you leave a lasting impression in their mind and leave them wanting more.  Every aspect of your event should convey the message that your company is different, stands out from the rest and is worth doing business with. Don’t blend in to the background – make it memorable.

 

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