Does the show belong in the lineup?

Does the show belong in the lineup?

It’s the hardest first question to ask and the one that can change your entire next year, budget and strategy. Should we exhibit?

Determining your exhibit program for the coming year isn’t a simple equation. Some of the tradeshows may be a slam dunk in your program because of past success. But, others may be questionable.

How can you determine if a show should be in your marketing mix?

  1. Set clear goals for your program. Are you trying to collect leads, generate meetings, or sell product at the show? You can have more than one goal but understanding your goals will help you determine if the show is right for you.
  2. Research the event. Ask the tradeshow producer if they have a tradeshow audit available. Or, see if a list of past attendees is available.
  3. Consider the timing and location. Does the event fit with your company’s sales cycle? Will its location add costs to your budget that will negatively affect the ROI? When deciding between one show in Las Vegas and another in London with the same audience, cost can be the deciding factor.

Validate your decision

At the show, check your data to decide if your research rings true on the show floor.

  1. Review your leads. Qualify your leads whether you are using a form or badging system. Are you seeing your target audience? What percentage do you see compared to other events?
  2. At-show surveys. Consider survey takers in your exhibit to survey your visitors. Ask them questions related your strategy and their goals in attending the show. Do they match up? Are they looking for the types of products/services that you offer? Are they here to buy if you are attending to sell?
  3. Check the competition. How are your competitors doing? They will most likely have objectives similar to yours. Consider conducting a competitive audit to determine which competitors are faring the best. If you find your competitors struggling compared to non-related exhibitors, you may be at a show with attendees who are not looking for your product category.

While it may take trying a trade show to determine if it belongs in your mix, if you measure its performance you shouldn’t have to make a repeat performance to make your final decision.

Exhibitors Connection, nationwide tradeshow and event marketing, specializes in creating an on-site, event marketing team that will best represent your brand, your company and be a natural extension of your team. Let us know if we can help you pick the right team for your next event, 773.631.9465.