Whilst trade shows can be a somewhat time consuming and an expensive process, you have the ability to increase your customers dramatically over just a few days, gain leads and spread brand awareness. Executing a flawless trade show can lead to more funding, new customers and a real buzz around your brand and products, and if managed correctly from the start it can give you a much needed boost throughout all aspects in your business. To help you wow your customers and deliver a show stopping display at your next trade show here are 10 of our top tips that will help you execute a well managed and thought through trade show with ease!

#1. Plan Ahead

As the saying goes, if you fail to prepare, you prepare to fail. Preparation needs to happen at least 6 months before a trade show so you can ensure that everything is in place for it to be a success. Preparation needs to include a list of products that you want to include, what the display is going to look like, the overall appearance and all of the logistics that are involved in the set-up process.

#2. How Much Space Do You Need?

Whilst you may not be able to choose where you are located at the trade show, you do need to determine how much space is required for your display, how many people you want to fit into your booth at any one time, and what additional storage space you need for stock, visual equipment and for your sales people.

#3. Make Your Stand Inviting

In the planning process a lot of time needs to go into how you want your stand to look to make it inviting, and ultimately sell your products or service. Research beforehand and gather a list of potential ideas and brainstorm your ideal stand, ask yourself 'Would I be drawn to look at this stand?', If the answer is no you need to reconsider your plan and work out what will. Your display stand needs to be eye-catching enough and also provide enough storage so you can display your products without being hidden. Our range of Exhibition displays are all custom made, and we can work with your requirements to help produce a creative and effective exhibition stand that will help you stand out from the crowd, and really wow your audience.

#4. Dress Appropriately

Dress for the event and for your business, bear in mind that you'll probably be on your feet all day so you need to be dressed in something comfortable. A show stopping display can be ruined by poorly dressed staff, so dress to impress, don't go too over the top, and ultimately think of your comfort throughout the day. As if you're feeling tight and uncomfortable in something, it's likely to show through when you're speaking to customers.

#5. Checklist

Once all of the planning and preparation is done, arrive armed with a checklist so you can ensure everything is completed by the time the doors open and the real customers start to flood in. Getting to the stand early either the day before or on the day to setup will mean you can have a stress free run up, and smooth over any issues if anything does unfortunately pop up on the day.

#6. Make Friends With Your Neighbours

Whether you're at the trade show for a day or a few days, you'll have time to become accustomed to your neighbours. Whilst they may potentially be your competitors, get to know them, find out what their business is and network. You never know what opportunities could be looking straight at you!

#7. Get The Staff Right

Regardless to whether your trade show stand wows the customers or not, if you've not got the right sales people stood at the booth, sales are going to be a flop and no one's going to find your stand approachable. Pick the best people for the trade show that are approachable, confident, know what they're trying to sell and know how to close the deal. The trade show is all about getting your message out there about what you do, and it rightfully needs to be executed in the right way.

#8. Get The Pitch Right, But Don't Pounce

No one likes an over eager sales person that pounces as soon as you walk into the booth, neither does someone who doesn't know what they're talking about. Once you've selected the right staff, create an irresistible and friendly pitch that is really going to sell the product/service to your potential customers. Provide the customer with everything they need to know from the start, whilst making them realise that whatever you're trying to sell is a solution to the specific customer need.

#9. Get Social - Network, Network, Network

There is no faster way to spread the message than digitally these days. Get the low down on what the hashtags being used at the trade show are and use them throughout all of your posts, this will allow you to easily link up to potential customers coming to the trade show. Tweeting about where your stand is, what's on offer and setting up competitions for the event are great ways to drive traffic to the site even after the trade show has finished. It's a great way of building a network of customers and influencers up in a short period of time that will get them to visit you at your stand. Make all of your social links and handles visible to the customer too so that they can connect with you after the show.

#10. Conduct Feedback & Evaluation On The Trade Show

Gathering customer feedback throughout and analysing sales and interaction after the trade show will allow you to build on past experience and prepare for a trade show in the future. You can perhaps identify areas that you didn't do so well on and what you would improve upon next time. Having real feedback from customers is also imperative to the business, and gives you a brief indication to how your company/brand is appearing to consumers.

Armed with these 10 top tips for exhibiting at trade shows, you'll do what you set out to do - make connections, wow the crowds and pull in the sales! Check out our top 5 retail merchandising tips for even more help on how you can stand out from the crowd at your next trade show! Look out for our future blog posts on our Facebook page, twitter and Google +!