8 Tricks of the Trade Show
Trade shows are a tried-and-true way to generate new prospects, capture qualified leads and close sales.
But you can make your next trade show even more effective with these technology-based tricks.
1. Create a trade-show specific landing page.If you do one thing on this list, do this. Naming and tagging a show-specific page on your site not only gives customers and prospects a place to get the latest show information, but it will increase your search engine optimization (SEO) for the show. So when people start Googling the show, your page should show up higher in the search results and garner more traffic. Name your page using the show name and year: abccompany.com/CoolTech2015. We recommend creating the page three to five months before the show.
2. Send out a pre-show survey.The best way to know what your customers and prospects are looking for is to ask. Set up a simple survey on your trade-show specific landing page and then email your customers and prospects a link to the survey. You can even use this as an opportunity to drive traffic to your booth. For example, offer them a small incentive for filling out the survey that they can claim at the trade show. We recommend sending the survey two to three months before the trade show.
3. Add trade show posts to your blog.Blogging is a great way to easily and cost-effectively generate trade show related content. It also gives your customers and prospects a way to comment on your latest product launch, video, etc. As an added bonus, blog posts will enhance your SEO credit. To further boost your SEO, find an industry blogger who’s willing to do a guest blog post and link to your site. You’ll also want to reach out to industry bloggers with product samples and other tidbits about your participation in the show.
4. Understand how to best use social media.There is a time and place for everything on social media, particularly when it comes to trade shows. Here are some general guidelines:
- Utilize LinkedIn for networking and joining/participating in groups.
- Share messages of a more personal nature with Facebook.
- Promote products, seminars, company info, etc using Twitter.
- Use YouTube to share your trade show video.
- Share your presentation with Slideshare.
- Do not post the exact same message on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
5. Create a social media calendar.Sure, you plan to tweet… but about what? How often? Where will your tweets lead your audience? To answer these questions, you’ll need a calendar. We’ve created a sample Trade Show Planner that helps you document everything from tweets to YouTube videos to guest blog posts.
6. Take advantage of LinkedIn groups.You can join or create special trade show related groups on LinkedIn. When you create a group, you not only appear organized – your group will appear in search engine results when attendees Google the show.
7. Create post-show nurturing campaigns.Lead-nurturing campaigns that are ready to roll prior to the show are invaluable. While you’re packing your bags and heading home, your lead-nurturing software can work behind the scenes to send follow-up emails. So while your prospects and customers are a captive audience – checking their smart phones at the airport – your follow-up messages will be delivered right to them.
8. Use software to track your goals and manage your tactics.Marketing automation software allows you to do two things: better manage your tactics and easily track their effectiveness. You can use a marketing automation software such as Hubspot to:
- Create trade show specific landing pages
- Create trade show specific lead-nurturing campaigns
- Manage social media messaging
- Track traffic
- Track leads
- Integrate with your customer relationship management (CRM) tool
Do you use any of the above tricks of the trade show? Do you have some new tricks up your sleeve? We’d love to hear about them.