Having a booth at a technology tradeshow can be expensive. As a minimum, you’re going to spend several thousand dollars for a small booth, and large ones can reach into the tens of thousands of dollars. Therefore, before you make that sort of investment, you need to make sure that you are going to get everything out of it that you expect.
There are many different types of technology trade shows out there, ranging from small local shows to national events. You need to pick the ones that are going to give you the best results – and this doesn’t necessarily mean picking the largest one. Before you jump in and book your booth, sit down and think about your target audience. If you are looking to capture new customers, then what is their profile? Are you looking for CIOs, or software developers? If you are looking for investors, then you need to make sure that investors go to the show. On the other hand, you may be looking for partners to distribute your products – and if so, are you looking for B2B service companies who can integrate your product into their overall offering, or a big-box store chain who can sell your product to consumers?
Once you have answered all of these questions, then go to the company that is organizing the tradeshow, and ask them some questions. First, find out who exhibited at the show last year, so you can see if firms similar to yours have been there in the past. Second, ask them for attendance figures over the last several years, so you can see if attendance has been increasing or declining. Finally, ask them for a breakdown of the different types of attendees – they collect this information when people register to attend the show, so there is no reason why they shouldn’t give it to you.
Once you are at the show, you need to stand out from the crowd. Obviously, having a good booth design is part of this, but you also need to attract attention. For example, you could put up a big banner which provides key information about your product right in front of your booth where everyone can see it – even from a distance. You can get these online and have them customized to your exact needs from a supplier such as bannerstandpros.com.
Finally, think about how you are going to operate your booth. Make sure that you have a highly knowledgeable member of your staff on your booth at all times, so that potential customers can always get an answer to their questions. Also make sure that you present a professional image at all times – for instance, make it clear to your staff that they have to remain on the booth for the duration of their shifts, and that eating or drinking is not permitted during this time. Similarly, if you have salesmen on the booth, they may have to take calls from customers, but they need to step off the booth if they do.