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Every business needs more customers to survive.  The way in which you acquire these customers is through your brand strategy.  Your brand strategy is the process you use to generate new leads or customers.  This can be through marketing, public relations, advertising, or trade shows.

Exhibiting at trade shows can significantly expand your brand strategy if you know how to effectively harness your brand positioning and engagement.  What better way to get in front of your most desired customers if you’re not a giant in the industry?  We may not all have blue chip companies’ advertising budgets, so trade shows are often one of the best ways to get in front of potential customers. Consider the following ways you can use trade shows to expand your brand strategy:

Cut Through Industry Noise with Your Brand Strategy Prior to a Show

Once your team has settled on a trade show to attend, it’s important to make marketing your presence at the trade show a part of your brand strategy.  This could involve a number of different techniques such as email marketing to the trade show attendee list, working social media to promote your presence using the show hashtag, pay per click advertising, or even a well-timed press release. The point is to ensure your desired customers know that you’ll be attending the trade show and to encourage that they visit your trade show booth.

inbound marketing trade show booth rental

On Brand Trade Show Display Design

Superior trade show display design should be an important part of your brand strategy at your next trade show.  Your display should be the living embodiment of your brand.  This could be accomplished with a themed trade show display to communicate your brand story visually.  Alternatively, it could also involve a design that communicates the emotions you want your customers to feel as a result of your brand strategy such as young, fun, and vivacious.  It’s important that your exhibit house partner captures the spirit of your brand and communicates that visually as a part of your brand strategy.  Take the necessary time to design your display early so you’re not left scrambling to try and take on this endeavor while marketing your presence and planning the rest of the logistics of a trade show.

Synology technology trade show booth

Brand Activations and Experiential Marketing Events

You can tell someone what your business is about multiple times, but they won’t necessarily get it unless they experience it for themselves.  This is why increasingly, exhibitors are making brand activations and experiential marketing events a part of their brand strategy while on the show floor.  These kinds of experiences allow show attendees to experience your brand instead of being talked at as they pass by.  Examples of these can include photo ops with large branded props, viewing life on the farm where you grow your products, testing out products as they race around a go kart track, interactive play, or gamification to let customers experience your brand for themselves. Your event or activation should ultimately fit into your overall brand strategy but it doesn’t need to be too outlandish to give people a sense of your products or services.

trade show exhibit painting

Branded Giveaways

Giveaways are more than just pens and tote bags with your company’s logo on them.  Instead, your giveaways should fit into your brand strategy.  Consider a medical business that’s seeking to connect with hospital administrators.  Administrators wouldn’t be encouraged to remember your business because you gave them a pen.  They would be far more likely to form a positive memory and brand association with something like distinctive cold care kits instead.  You don’t have to buy a stack of new iPads to impress your prospective leads.  Your cost per customer acquisition would certainly be far too high.  Instead, keep your branded giveaways simpler but closely aligned with your brand strategy.

unique trade show giveaways

Prior to selecting your next trade show, keep these suggestions in mind.  Don’t forget to ask your exhibit house partner for more suggestions.  With decades of experience, they’ve literally seen and heard it all and can offer more nuanced suggestions for your industry.

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