How to Launch a Successful Trade Show

Ryan Farquharson

Ryan Farquharson Co-founder and CEO at ExpoCart

Friday, July 5, 2019

If you plan to launch a trade show, then you know it takes a lot of effort and time to ensure that everything will run smoothly.

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Trade shows done in the right manner hold a lot of potential for business. To get it right, you need to start with the basics like where to hire furniture for individual booths and how to get enough businesses to purchase stands from the event.

1. Plan in advance

If a trade show is to succeed, you need to formulate a plan months ahead of the event. Inform the whole team of travel dates so that everyone can book flights. Consider securing a room block before the hotel sells out; most trade shows are held at similar times of the year and in similar locations, which can make finding last-minute accommodation a challenge. 
Pre-event campaign planning is also important. If there are going to be launches of new products, potential attendees need to know about them in advance. This will help them make the right plans and not miss the launch. Prepare emails and ads for mass media, which start to air weeks in advance; it will help the audience get excited about coming to the trade show. 

2. Offer a discount for pre-show training

Exhibitors who agree to get pre-show training deserve a discount. Remember, you want to ensure that they come back next year. However, this’ll only happen if they get the right training. With the right training, you’ll be ensuring the exhibition is a success and as a result, they’ll come back. No matter how much the discount might be, it’s better than losing their booking if they choose to not re-book the following year. 

3. Look for a sponsor

You could plan the finest trade show ever but if no one comes, it’s a failure, and you’ll need help to promote the event, especially if it’s your first one. In this scenario, a sponsor can prove to be a great help. Ideally, you need a company who has proven expertise in your niche. If you can find a recognized expert, this’ll work out better, and the sponsor can promote the event on their site and social media, which will help to attract exhibitors. 
When it comes to creating the on-site marketing material and pre-event ads, you should include the name of the sponsor for additional exposure. 
In return, you could offer the sponsor a booth in a prime location for free.

4. Location is everything

Once you decide you’re going to host a trade show, you’ll need to start thinking about venue. Consider the potential attendees, the speeches and much more; this will help you decide the size of your venue and the amenities you’ll require.

You’ll want to ensure it’s easy to get to. For instance, it should be close to an airport and close to hotels. Try to strike the perfect balance between these two. You also don’t want to be on the wrong side of town; traffic could cause huge delays to the schedule. However, you also don’t want to be unrealistically far from transportation hubs either.

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