What Startups Need to Know for a Successful Trade Show

Startups Trade Show Booths

Being in a startup business can be a lot of fun. You have the ability to turn your ship on a dime, so to speak, and move with agility as your business demands it. But let’s face it, being a startup means you’ve got passion and you’re ready to do great things. That also means there’s a lot of work that needs to be done, especially when it comes to marketing your business.

Online exposure is best left to be navigated by professionals. It’s a competitive space that most startups don’t have the bandwidth or resources to manage right off the bat. Even with most people on the verge of digital overload in their personal lives there’s no better way to meet a potential customer than face to face. One of the best ways to put yourself and get great exposure out there as a startup is to exhibit at a trade show. Here’s what startups need to know about successful trade show exhibition.

Trade Show Budgets and Pre Planning

You have a budget, should you choose to accept it. Don’t let your budget self-destruct. The first step is developing a trade show budget that covers costs like drayage, travel expenses, trade show booth, marketing materials, and more.

When planning for the trade show, consider what your motivation and overall goal is. Are you exhibiting to raise brand awareness, make sales, or build your lead generation sales funnel? Knowing what your overall strategy is will go a long way to ensuring you’re consistent with your brand’s message and presence. People do love consistency!

Are your palms already clammy at the thought of exhibiting at a trade show? Get first hand knowledge and experience simply by visiting a trade show near you.

Start Your Trade Show Search Locally

Your own backyard, figuratively speaking, is a perfect place to start exposing your brand to potential customers. Exhibiting at a local trade show allows you to present the human side of your brand. Allowing customers to see the people behind the products or services gives them the ability to humanize your brand. Gaining a customer’s’ trust can be tough, but once you have it you can turn them into a brand ambassador.

Staying local also means you can keep your budget intact. Without the uncertainty of travel delays, how on earth will you sleep at night?

Choose Your Trade Show  Wisely

Selecting the perfect trade show for your business is essential to ensuring that you’re placing yourself in front of prospects that are interested in what you have to offer. Exhibiting your revolutionary new cotton candy machine at a medical device trade show may not be the best use of your time, money and resources. Choose your trade show wisely. Do your research and due diligence to make sure your business compliments those at the trade show. One quick way to test this is to see where your competitors are exhibiting.

Walk in Your Customer’s Shoes

If you were your own customer, would you be able to positively identify the following when approaching your exhibit at a trade show:

  • What are they selling?
  • What are the benefits of the product / service?
  • Are the booth staff smiling and approachable?

Consider the pain points of your customers and tailor your trade show exhibit around answering those questions and addressing those needs.

Make Post Show Plans

You made some sales, some friends, and hopefully some leads. Now what? Don’t let that hard work go to waste. Make sure your follow up with your leads; as time passes your ability to connect with them decreases rapidly.

Trade shows can be extremely beneficial to a business and should be considered in your marketing plans. If you’d like more information on how to have the best trade show booth, or tips on how to have a great show, all you have to do is contact us today!


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