Many companies invest their time and money on exhibitions. These can make great returns for your company and is a clever method to promoting your company's service. However, if it is not organised and presented in the right way then this could easily fall as a waste of time and money. One thing that is important with holding an event like this is getting all exhibition stands, marketing and objectives planned months in advance.
The first step to take before running an exhibition is to list out the aims and objectives of this exhibition. It is no good to start ordering you display and exhibition stands prior to this, as you will lose sight of why you are investing in the first place. Make a list of the reasons why you will be holding this exhibition and what objectives you intend to meet at the end of it.
Your aims should be set to benefit the company, with a further strategy plan to meet them. You can set yourself reasons why you are exhibiting but with this you must follow the plan through. The reasons for an exhibition could be as follows: To promote or launch a new product; To provide free samples or present a demonstration of a new product; To meet new clients; To meet Existing clients; To promote your company using exhibition stands; and finally to meet resellers or distributors.
Whatever the reason, you must follow this through with an objective. These could be as follows: To bring in 100 new clients; To sell a certain number of products during the show; To make a certain number of client appointments for the future; To give out a specific number of samples; To reach a target of meeting a number of distributors or resellers; and to gain marketing feedback from clients.
The second step is to draw up an exhibition budget plan, calculating the cost of the event and the amount you intend to make on your returns. A good way to budget your money is to work alongside with an experienced exhibition management company. You will need to do your research to find the right agency, so it is always best to approach them at least 6 months before the exhibition.
The third step is to research venues and exhibition spaces. This is essential because you may not find a venue nearer the time and you will need to calculate how many people are likely to attend. Research previous shows and exhibitors; ask questions about the attendance rate and the outcome of the event. This will give an idea on what the venue was like to exhibit in, which rooms attracted more attention and how best to put on the displays.
The fourth step is to decide on how much space is required and the kind of exhibition stands needed for your company. Once again, you can approach an experienced exhibition company to help you organise and design the graphics for your banners. Look at examples of the best way to display products and always get a preview of any graphics and banner stands. You must also make sure that displays match the theme of your company, promoting the aim of the exhibition and promotes your brand clearly.
Finally, once you are better prepared for the event, you should aim to promote the exhibition yourself. This could be through mailing posters, advertising with the local press, advertising on your website and using press releases. It is also important that you draw up a plan of action for the day, delegating tasks to staff and making a plan of managing leads on the day. You will also need to make sure you have organised stand management, so prepare your staff for the day in advance, making sure they are clear with what to do, how to greet clients and what to present to clients.
Anna Stenning is an expert on picking the right exhibition stands and organising company exhibitions.