10 Effective Ways to Attract Visitors to Your Exhibition Stand
Here are our 10 effective ways to attract visitors to your exhibition stand, it ranges from the stand design and build to effective use of staff and even tips and techniques to entice those all important delegates away from your competitor’s exhibition stand and over to yours.
You’ve probably been to hundreds of exhibitions and business expos at exhibition centres throughout the country and generally there is a theme that runs through them all. They all pretty much look the same. You know how it is, endless rows of companies demonstrating their wares, bright coloured cheap carpet covering the concrete floor and a plethora of exhibition stand designs trying to entice you in.
Modern exhibition stands can look like almost anything you want them to but good exhibition stand design companies will advise on what is the best thing for your business and work with you to get exhibition ideas that will help your business get the best results. Event stand design doesn’t need to be over complicated, it just needs to serve your needs according to your event goals and objectives i.e. fulfil what you are specifically looking to achieve at your exhibition and also appeal to your target audience in order that they actually want to visit your display stand. So, if you’re wondering how are exhibition stands made then it’s not just about how to build an exhibition stand but display stand design and layout too.
So here are 10 effective ways to attract visitors and generate more leads & sales while exhibiting
- The Giveaway
Yes, this is the most obvious and can be the most cheesy, the most pointless and the most forgettable part of a conference or exhibition. But if done well then it can be a lasting memory of your business for weeks, months and even years after those amazing exhibition stands have been designed, built, used and dismantled. We’ve all returned home from an expo with the obligatory tote bag full of leaflets, brochures and branded goods. From pens and sweets to stress balls, USB sticks and cuddly toys there is more choice than ever. However if you really think about your target audience, who they are, who you want to attract to your stand then you can find a promotional giveaway that could really hit the mark. If you can, try and stay on brand so it compliments what you do or there is at least a logical link to your company. I once received a branded Frisbee from an insurance company and to this day I still have no idea why.
It may cost more to find a quality gift but if you get it right, that gift will not only attract the right people to your stand but it will mean that your audience will leave impressed and satisfied and also your gift will keep your business in the front of their minds way after the exhibition has finished.
- The Time Out
You can sell and promote your business without getting in the face of your audience. Offering a place that is away from the rugby scrum that exhibitions can be, could work wonders for you and will keep people on your exhibition stand for longer. Comfortable seating, refreshments, peace and quiet are all in short supply at expos (without paying through the nose for them) so if you can offer a section of your event stand to relative calmness and relaxation then you’ll attract a hell of a lot of people seeking to escape the madness.
Once your visitors are relaxed they very often will open up, talk more freely and you just might get that deal, order or lead that you’re looking for. Everyone knows what exhibition and conference stand designs are set up for and why your company is exhibiting there but it doesn’t mean that you can’t be a bit more subtle about it and treat your potential customers with a little TLC.
- The Memory
This may not be necessarily about attracting visitors to your stand but more about ensuring that they leave with a lasting impression of you and your brand. If you have the budget, think about something like a photo booth or photo set up that visitors can then have something to take away with them or it can be emailed to them. Possibly run a competition or challenge that encourages people to check back on a leaderboard.
This is where your creative juices can run riot and you can offer all kinds of wacky activities to your visitors. The key principles are to create positive impressions, try and keep it on brand and try and keep it meaningful – even fun stuff can have a link back to your company. I still have a photo on my computer desktop of taking part in a cricket challenge from a leisure expo which reminds me about the company every time I switch my computer on. Believe me, people do keep things like this if it hits the right note.
- The Resource
Think about your stand being something useful to your visitors and prospects. Much like in the online world, if you can provide something of use to your visitors it will be very much welcomed. The stand could become the ‘go to’ place of the exhibition if you have a white paper or report to give away. If its related to the actual exhibition then it’s an on-hand resource for delegates to make use of there and then but if it’s something related to your industry that delegates can refer to in their daily work routine then it will be a constant reminder of your company.
Setting up the resource giveaway can focus on delegates visiting your exhibition stand, leaving their details or placing an order and if it’s of really high value then word will soon get around that your stand is the place to be. It will also help place your company as a thought leader or prominent voice in the industry especially if delegates need to continually refer back to the document and then you’re placed constantly at the front of their minds.
- The Pre-Event Activity
This one takes some planning ahead and will need to be backed up with an exhibition stand that delivers what you promise. Working ahead with your exhibition stand designers would be a good option here to ensure that you not only talk the talk but you walk the walk too. If you know who is coming to the event then contacting them beforehand is a great way to attract visitors to your exhibition stand. You can tell them what they can expect to find, who they can meet, what they will do and so much more. It allows you to build up some excitement and anticipation to visiting your stand and even arrange meetings with prospects in advance.
It just means that whatever you say has to actually be there when they arrive! There’s no point promising amazing exhibition stands when you just have a table and a pop up display so be careful what you say. It is, however an excellent method of drawing visitors in and your sales team can email or call delegates to entice them in.
- The Meeting Place
This follows on from pre-event activity because you can use your stand as a meeting place. If you’ve been trying to co-ordinate diaries with that elusive prospect then why not invite them to your stand for a meeting. If you know they are going to be at the event then it’s like having a captive audience and you can offer an environment away from your office or theirs that is still business focused and yet is a little relaxed. Many delegates to conferences and exhibitions come to do business so use your stand as a place to do just that. But if you can, try and create a separate area on the stand for meetings as it can be a little off putting for potential visitors looking to visit a stand that is full of in-depth looking business meetings.
- The Layout
Another that requires working with your exhibition stand designers and your stand builders too. Think about the type of ambience and atmosphere that you want to create, is there a flow or pathway that you want people to follow? If so, when it comes to the exhibition stand design, look at what that flow will look like and if there is a natural movement for stand visitors. Similarly if you are looking for delegates to come and stay on your stand then the exhibition stand designer needs to take this into account. We mentioned earlier about the stand being a meeting place or somewhere where delegates can relax, if this is an objective for your exhibition stand then the layout, design and build need to reflect that.
Exhibition stand designers and builders need to know exactly what your objectives are in order to provide the best possible stand for you. There will always be examples from other events that show the best and worst of how these stands will work. They will have the knowledge and experience so use it to your advantage.
- The Special Offer
Everybody loves a deal or a bargain so think about offering an ‘exhibition only’ deal to attract visitors to your stand. If you can provide an exclusive or something that only visitors to your stand will benefit from then it could be a great way to drive traffic. What’s more, once word gets around the exhibition then it will serve as the perfect word of mouth marketing campaign. Especially good if you are exhibiting an FMCG but a deal or offer works across pretty much any product or service. Most importantly, if it’s driving footfall to your stand then not only is it generating sales but its increasing brand awareness too.
- The Design
We’ve talked about it earlier but before the stand builders get going, the exhibition stand designers need to lay out what it needs to look like. This can include everything from the finish of the structure, the colour of the carpet and even the types of seating. Once you have an idea of the look and feel, probably guided by your company’s brand colours, you need to think about the flow of the stand. It’s important to think about how to engage with you visitors and to include content that will keep visitors interested and happy to stay on your stand. Before the build and installation even take place you should have a pretty good idea of how it will look thanks to your stand designers’ 3D visuals, detailed drawings and possibly a number of alternatives too for how it could look.
Depending on the nature of the event and the products or services, how big a part is technology going play on the stand? From TVs and presentations to tablets, it’s important to use items like this for an actual purpose rather than simply a gimmick so think about if they add value because if they don’t, don’t use them. Exhibition stands with screens/TVs can look odd if you’re not utilising the screens to the best you can.
- The Staff
Above everything else, the staff on your exhibition stand can make or break how well received your stand is. If they are interacting with visitors then all the technology and giveaways in the world will pale into insignificance if your staff are rude or don’t do their job. Think about everything from their appearance to how they address visitors because it will all have a lasting impression on anyone they come into contact with. If you’re using staff from your company then they should be aware of everything that your brand does and stands for but if you’re bring in agency staff or promotional staff then make sure that they are fully briefed and ‘on message’ with what you are trying to communicate.
Think about your target audience too, it’s important to have staff that your visitors can relate to and can communicate with on their level. Uniforms can also make a huge difference and ensuring that everyone looks consistent and on brand is a simple but very effective thing to consider.
So, if you’re thinking about an exhibition stand design hopefully there’s a few tips that will help to bring delegates to your stand. Here at T2 Display we think it’s all about working with you to produce what you want. We know it’s probably one of the biggest dates in your calendar and we’ll be with you every step of the way, starting at the design phase before our highly skilled carpenters, electricians and fabricators get on with the build phase before we install your exhibition stand at the venue.
Get in touch with us now to see how we can work with you to make your next exhibition a success.