Dear Mr. Hill:
My company does trade shows, but they don’t seem to follow what you preach, about how important the Pre-Show effort is, inviting your clients, prospects and suspects to your booth. The multiple ways you can use to contact these people, and what group of people you want to invite.
The VP of Sales says that they get a lot of traffic at their booth and since all of the shows that they attend are major 3-4 day shows, why waste time, effort and money on doing mailings, or e-mail blasts, when the show producer is doing a lot more advertising, and mailing to all of the industry people then we can afford. Is he right, or could we do better?
Very truly yours,
Brian F., Chicago, IL
Your VP of Sales is absolutely right; the Trade Show producers of these major trade shows do a lot of mailing and advertising, to all of the industry members not necessarily to your clients, or prospects. Granted, you may get mail, or e-mails from the Trade Show producer but it is general in nature not specific. They speak about the whole trade show, not necessary what you know your clients or prospects would be interested.
When the Trade Show producer sends an invitation it’s to come to the show. When you send an invitation to your clients, prospects or suspects it is to come to your Booth, and see the latest in what your company has to offer. It’s not to see the whole show; it’s to see my contribution, what my company has to offer in this industry trade show. You get a personal invitation from someone in your company, saying I look forward to meeting you at my booth # 1234. This invitation has to be worded in such a way to take into consideration the WIIFM factor (What’s in it for me) of your client. Why you are inviting him or her, what they will see that’s different then anyone else has at this trade show, and it is something that can be used by their organization that will increase their profitability, and reduce their costs! Now this is an invitation, you have given your client, prospect or suspect a reason for attending this trade show, stopping at your booth, and hopefully meeting up with the salesperson that invited him or her, and getting a presentation on your companies latest and greatest.
I hope this gives you some ideas that you can pass on to your VP.
To your continued trade show success
John Hill, Trade Show Coach