When Murphy’s Law decides to ply its magic to your trade show strategy you need a contingency. It’s called your Plan B Having a back-up in place is always a good idea; so much so that in 2006 movie actor Brad Pitt named his production company Plan B Productions. More recently the infamous morning after birth control pill has been dubbed Plan B.
Do the math. Assume the next trade show you participate in expects a total audience of 10,000 people over a period of 20 hours. The number of people you can expect to walk past your booth each hour on average is 500. Now divide that number by 60 which results in the possibility of having 8 + people walk by every minute. It’s a pretty daunting thought.
E-advertising is often measured as a Cost Per Impression (CPI) or Cost Per Thousand Impressions (CPM). This is not a new technique, traditional marketers have been using something similar for ages. Whether you advertise on television, radio, magazines, newspapers or billboards you will often look to CPI as your justification for the cost.
For example if you know that your advertisement will be seen by one million people and you are quoted a CPM of $ 10.00 your total advertising cost will be $ 10,000. The CPI then divides this number by 1,000 so that a $10.00 CPM equates to a $ .01 CPI.
A dilemma many exhibitors face is how much information to include in their trade show display. For small exhibitors with one or two product offerings the answer can be difficult. For larger exhibitors with a multitude of products and services which might also include several departments, the answer can become a nightmare. There is often so much to tell and the exhibitor wants to make sure the visitors get the right message. The solution starts by taking a step back and looking at the display from the visitor’s perspective.
Which would you rather have: 500 mediocre leads or 25 – 30 high value leads? The answer is obvious and yet many exhibitors who attend trade shows try to talk to as many people as possible then go back to the office with a fist full of business cards and say; “see what I accomplished.”
The cost of following up on these so-called business leads is enormous and it leaves your sales reps often disheartened with the number of rejections they receive. The solution is three fold:
In her book Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, JK Rowling wrote: “Enter, stranger, but take heed Of what awaits the sin of greed, For those who take, but do not earn, Must pay most dearly in their turn. So if you seek beneath our floors, A treasure that was never yours, Thief, you have been warned, beware Of finding more than treasure there.”
Say No! Yes, I mean it!! If your client or prospect (or customer) wants to buy something that is not in their best interest (it’s too small, it won’t satisfy their needs), say, “NO, I don’t want to sell that to you,” and make sure to add something like, “I’d rather you be unhappy with my competitor than with me.”
A while back I posted a question on the TSEA (Trade Show Exhibitors Association) Group on LinkedIn about the use of promotional products. There were 45 comments soon after and the discussion is still going strong. Comments ranged from those who thought promotional products were a waste of time and resources to those at the other end of the spectrum who found them very useful.
Tote bags, pens, mouse pads, lanyards, CD’s, note pads, candy, gizmo’s for your computer, stress balls, luggage tags, buttons, pins, card holders, golf tees, sweat bands, mugs… don’t you just love it? Lots of people do. Ask visitors why then attend certain shows or what they remember best and they say – “all those cool giveaways.”
Thinking back to one of the great cult films of the 1980s…Caddyshack. There is a conversation between Ty Webb (Chevy Chase) and Judge Smails (Ted Knight) in the locker room after Ty has just finished a round of golf. Judge Smails asks Ty what he shot that day and Ty responds by telling the Judge that he doesn’t keep score. Puzzled, Judge Smails says, “How do you measure yourself with other golfers?” Ty responds by saying, “By height.”