In an increasingly competitive marketplace, leaders need to find new and effective strategies to promote ecommerce. Digital marketing may go a long way toward helping an ecommerce business thrive, but the best business relationships and transactions often happen in real time. One of the best ways to capitalize on these opportunities comes through trade shows.
Who Should Attend a Trade Show
Businesses of many types benefit from trade show appearances every year. Though the events take a large investment of time and money, they offer a large return on the investment, bringing in valuable partnership potential and new sales.
Often, trade shows are devoted to a single industry or area of expertise, but there are also shows that bring in audiences with broad interests, increasing the potential to attract new clients. These large events can benefit ecommerce businesses that deal with a single product or service, multiple products, or subscriptions, as well as business that deal in B2B or work with consumers. From manufacturing to wholesaling, there are opportunities for growth.
Trade shows give the ecommerce business a chance to showcase everything they have to offer, with the added perk of expanding their reach into new markets.
Businesses sign on for events in key locations across the globe and set up a eye-catching booths, where they can build brand awareness and grow their ecommerce customer base. During the trade shows, business leaders can take advantage of the opportunity to connect with large and energetic crowds, in an environment where people are in a purchasing mood. It gives the ecommerce business a chance to showcase everything they have to offer, with the added perk of expanding their reach into new markets.
Just make sure the trade shows on your agenda are a good match. While most trade shows are expensive to attend, some are more reputable than others and some work better for certain industries. Ask others in your line of work for recommendations on the best trade shows--and the best markets--to pursue. Exhibiting at the right trade shows from the start will put your ecommerce business in a much better position going forward.
Strategies for Trade Show Success
With thoughtful planning, appealing marketing collateral and unique products, any trade show booth will get off to a great start. Taking a strategic approach to these events can help ecommerce business leaders ensure they get the most out of the experience. Form a strategy in advance of the event, combined with realistic goals for your business, then put the plan into action during the trade show.
Every visitor to a trade show booth has the potential to become a new partner or, better yet, a new customer.
Every visitor to a trade show booth has the potential to become a new partner or, better yet, a new customer. Provide personalized interactions with the people who approach your ecommerce business, take notes on your interactions and follow up on those leads following the event. Display links to the ecommerce social media channels and distribute materials that will help people connect with your business after the trade show ends.
Keep an eye on competitors, observe new trends in the industry or the trade show itself and tour the booths to observe other businesses.
Another way to excel at trade shows is to learn from the other experts in the room. Keep an eye on competitors, observe new trends in the industry or the trade show itself and tour the booths to observe other businesses so you can learn from their approach to visitor interactions. If there's an approach that is working well for other ecommerce businesses, it might help to try that approach with your next interaction.
When possible, use a direct approach in your sales pitching, in order to try to close on new purchases or agreements during the event. Some trade shows may have guidelines that prevent this from happening during the event, but you can also offer to set up appointments or follow-up calls in order to move sales after the trade show has closed.
Benefits of Exhibiting at Trade Shows
There are countless benefits to attending a good trade show, ranging from small benefits that are hard to quantify to large, measurable impacts on your ecommerce company. Not only will you generate highly lucrative leads for your business that fall within your target audience, but you'll also come away with expanded lists and new business prospects.
Trade shows also offer the chance to develop and strengthen your brand.
Trade shows also offer the chance to develop and strengthen your brand. Whether you're interested in securing a niche in the marketplace or positioning your ecommerce business as a leader in the industry, the business exhibit at the trade show will go a long way in defining your brand's identity and your business goals to onlookers.
Even startups and small businesses can go a long way in expanding their potential with a trade show booth. To simplify the task of setting up, you can use a modular design for the booth exhibit and still make the company stand out. You can also keep costs low by negotiating the location and travel costs wisely, and budgeting for the displays and the materials you'll need to effectively market your ecommerce business during the event.
Once you've successfully strengthened your brand and grown your business at a trade show, take time to study the results.
Once you've successfully strengthened your brand and grown your business at a trade show, take time to study the results. Track the numbers from the show and measure any data you have to see how successful the ecommerce exhibit was. Standard measurements could include the number of new leads generated, the number of sales made, the increases seen on social media channels or even the hits on the ecommerce business website during and after the trade show.
With data in hand, you'll see that the gains the trade show offered to your business well outweigh the costs.
Have you ever taken your business to a trade show? Tell us about it in the comments!