Marketing people love to exhibit or sponsor tradeshows, but they’re a lot of work. They’re also expensive. It’s not out of the ordinary that you’ll spend a lot of money just for brand awareness … not actual leads or qualified leads. We wanted to make our next tradeshow count.
We attended a tradeshow — Marketo’s Marketing Nation Summit 2016. We knew this was THE marketing event of the year — one we ReadyTalkers couldn’t miss. As a sponsor of the 2016 show, we decided to take a different approach to our sponsorship in order to attract quality leads. We started by brainstorming new and creative ways to drive traffic to the booth. Here’s how we made the tradeshow count:
1. Keep your message consistent.
This year the Summit took place in Las Vegas. To play off that idea, we created all of our messaging, artwork and entertainment around the theme of gambling, and hedging your bets. We found that a consistent message = a lasting impression on attendees.
2. Keep it entertaining.
Make it fun! This year ReadyTalk created a prize wheel. People were lined up to spin the wheel to get cash, which caused numerous bystanders walking by to gravitate toward the booth to check it out for themselves.
3. Go get your audience.
Your audience shouldn’t be limited by your booth size, sponsorship level, or location. Think outside the box and find creative ways to get attendees to your booth. This year we used ReadyTalk poker chips with our booth # and a call out to “claim your prize.” We passed these out during breaks, happy hours, sessions we attended and sessions we presented at.
We saw a direct correlation of booth traffic after each of these designated hand-out times.
4. Have awesome swag and prizes.
Even though every marketer likes a good pen, we also know that it’s not going to get someone to come to your booth. Understand your audience and select a giveaway that they’ll love. Our prize wheel consisted of cash giveaways on the spot. Let me tell you — people like cash.
5. Keep your audience engaged after the show.
One way that we captured leads after the event was through our poker chip. We included a link to a landing page on the back of each chip to enter to win even more cash. (I explained they like cash, right?) This was a great alternative for attendees who received the poker chip but didn’t have time to stop by our booth.
More than that, we’re continuing to keep up with them now — even after the summit.
6. Get your audience to create content.
Another way booth visitors could win cash was through a 30-second video. If they were a customer, they’d tell us about “Why they love ReadyTalk.” If they weren’t an existing customer, they’d let us know about their “their worst webinar experience.” (There were some doozies we’ll be sharing.) We generated over 50 videos we’ll use for marketing.
7. Have a customer represent you.
This one is big: Have one of your top customers’ join you in your booth to speak about your products with prospects. We found that attendees benefited from speaking with someone about an experience versus an offering. This made it easy for natural conversation among booth visitors. And they’re more apt to trust that customer. They can speak to pain points and issues, too. Read more about why that worked.
8. Make it a team effort.
Utilize your team’s strengths and come together to create an awesome event experience. Do this, and you’ll leave a lasting impression on your leads.