Tuning into the attendee’s agenda for a show, and particularly for your presence on the floor, can shed enormous light on their motivations and what you need to do to capture their attention.  Gathering research, analyzing the results will yield important factors on attendees preferences and how you can meet and exceed them.  But how do you go about gathering their attitudes and opinions?  Ask them.

There are several ways I will suggest that you gather insights from your audience who would be coming to your shows.

First, is your marketing department or product development group surveying your constituents?  If they are, ask them to add a couple of trade show questions onto the survey.  You could ask questions revolving around why they attend a certain show?  What are their goals for going?  What do they want to accomplish at the show?  Is there a current business  challenge or problem they are facing?

Secondly, you can conduct research within your booth.  I would recommend that you hire a third party research company so you can maintain objectivity.  The questions posed could cover:

  • Why did they stop into your booth – what attracted them to you?
  • What type of solution are they seeking today?
  • Is this the first time at the show or are they repeat attendees?
  • In your booth what did they find the most interesting?
  • How well did the booth personnel explain your solutions?
  • What would they like to see changed, enhanced, etc. in a future visit to your booth?
  • Compared to the other booths they have seen, how would they rate yours?

And lastly, create a customer marketing advisory panel.  The would look like a small group of core customers (10 – 12) who could come together via  conference calls on a quarterly basis. Not only could you pose questions about your booth, you could gather their ideas for other marketing campaigns.  The insights and wisdom which can be drawn for these avid customers will tweak and enhance you future marketing efforts, if you let it.

Gaining this knowledge from your research efforts will allow you to make better decisions and be “on target” with all of the prospects/customers.

Trade Show Image courtesy of Bigstock