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How Jacob Tyler Does Trade Show Marketing For Clients — 21st Century Style.

People think trade shows are boring, jam-packed with forgettable booths, and always headlined by some act that couldn’t headline a county fair.

And … they’re right. 

But hear me out, I actually think that’s a good thing. Because prospective customers are going to the trade show regardless, because they need to scope the latest industry tools, products, or tech. So, it’s kind of a necessary evil right? While we can’t fix the entertainment part (we always duck out and hit the nearest wine bar anyway), we can make sure that our clients stand out by not being boring, banal, and forgettable. So let me share a bit of what we do in case you’re planning your next tradeshow appearance. Oh, and by the way, this is an extremely simplified overview. A ton more thinking goes into this stuff. Ok, let’s do it.

Understand that design matters, a lot.

Booth design is marketing. It’s advertising. It’s sales. You don’t settle for cookie-cutter ads or signage in any other place do you? (Call us right now if you do.) We always make sure that our clients have a presence that is rooted in their overarching brand identity, the product strategy and that it’s always built out with a creative design that will make passersby stop and think “Whoa, what’s this?! I should stop” But it’s not just signage, it’s the booth experience as a whole as well — from colors and materials used, to interactive elements, to lighting and event-goer flow. Repeat after me: design matters. 

Embrace social media advertising.

Promoting your presence using social ads is such an obvious and effective tactic and it’s so underutilized at these events that our clients ALWAYS see huge results. With geographic targeting, custom email list audiences, and a plethora of interest-based targeting, it’s just a no-brainer. We break the social ad comms strategy into three Ps: Presence, Product, and People.

  • Presence – Let people know that you’re there and where you are. Booth number is particularly important.
  • Product – You’re there to showcase something, so tell the audience about it. Create content that makes it clear why you’re worth visiting.
  • People – The people from your company at the tradeshow are often experts who have tons of knowledge and experience. Maybe they’re even speaking or presenting outside of the trade booth itself. The event-goers want to know this stuff, even if they don’t know it yet. Create content for each person.

Obviously there’s so much more to this, but we save the tactics for paying clients. 

Go beyond the convention center.

We love it when a client wants to think bigger than the tradeshow. Killer happy hours, IV drips the morning after the killer happy hours (JOKING … actually, that’s a decent idea), coffee and donut meet-ups, or even a product seminar with a Q&A will get people out of their convention floor sensory overload and into you customer data base. Does it cost more and require more time and effort to put together? Definitely, but any experience that’s interesting and informative will always win the day.

That’s it in a nutshell. It sounds simple, but zig when everyone else zags and you’re gonna stand out. And we’d like to help you get there. Send us a message. And hey, why not tell a friend about this blog post?

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