If you’re worried about low turnout at your trade show exhibit, you can stop fretting and start doing something to boost interest. By using social media tools, you can actually pre-build traffic to your exhibit. That way, you’ll have plenty of people stopping by your display throughout the day.
Having a background all these years in social media marketing, sales & networking give me a bit of an edge in helping companies who are taking their business to a trade show display exhibition hall or convention. Here are five ways you and your company can use social media to pre-build some buzz and traffic to your booth.
Post a Video on YouTube
Image via Flickr by JM3
Giving people a taste of what your business offers can encourage them to learn more by visiting you at a trade show. YouTube videos make it easy for you to show potential customers, investors, and partners the basics of your business. Videos also let you add personality to your presentation. A brochure might feel stodgy, but a video feels personal and fun.
Use Hashtags in Twitter Posts
Image via Flickr by Maryland GovPics
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Twitter lets you reach thousands, or even millions, of people instantly. To get the most out of your tweets, though, you need to include the proper hashtags. Hashtags use the “#” symbol combined with keywords to organize Twitter posts. This makes it easier for people to find the tweets that interest them. Use the trade show’s name as a hashtag to reach people who already plan to attend. Boost attendance by using other keywords. If you own a beer distribution company for instance, you could use “#beer.” If you sell clothes, “#fashion” might work well for your tweets.
Spread the Word With a Contest
Image via Flickr by 401(K) 2013
Trade show attendance goes up when more people learn that the event is happening. Don’t rely on the event coordinators to spread the word. Use a contest to boost attendance and generate interest in your display. One popular contest involves asking people to “share” an image on Facebook. As people share the image to join the contest, their friends will see it. If they want a chance to win, then they will share it, too. If you have a good prize, your contest image could spread exponentially within hours.
Make Professional Connections
Image via Flickr by TheSeaFarer
Facebook and Google+ are fun ways for businesses to connect with their customers. If you want to reach people working inside your industry, though, you should consider setting up a profile on LinkedIn. In fact, you should probably encourage all of your employees to set up profiles. That way, your connections can spread faster. Use LinkedIn to find people who might take an interest in visiting your trade show display. Once you’re connected, you can keep them updated on future events and encourage them to attend.
Image via Flickr by LaMenta3
Don’t expect people to come to you. You might have an excellent blog or Facebook page that offers exciting information about upcoming trade shows, but you can’t count on other people to miraculously visit your site. Search for blogs run by companies that work in your industry. When you find some that interest you, start posting comments about posts. This is a great way to start conversations and build relationships online. It also gives you a chance to promote upcoming trade shows.