PRE-SHOW MARKETING(Download this page in printable PDF format.)
IF YOU ASK THEM, THEY WILL COME!
76% of trade show attendees decide before they leave for the show which displays they will visit. Many of these decisions are based on the information or invitations provided by exhibitors. This means your efforts can have a tremendous impact on your trade show performance. Give your company the competitive edge by alerting current and prospective customers about your WSA Show participation.
BUILD YOUR PROMOTIONAL EFFORTS FROM THE INSIDE OUT
Don't underestimate the power of in-house promotion. Encourage staff members to spread the word about your participation to current and potential customers by personally inviting them to your booth. Word-of-mouth is the most important source of information attendees use when selecting shows to attend. Verbal invitations indicate a high level of personal service and are looked upon favorably by prospects.
Be sure to promote your WSA participation in your company newsletter or at a company meeting.
LEAVE SOME TIME
There are new customers looking for you and your product. Leave some time available to meet with new retailers and introduce your brand to them.
You probably already place print ads in various publications about your products, services and/or company. Why not coordinate your advertising efforts with your WSA exhibit to reap even larger rewards?
- Take advantage of advertising programs offered by show management in the show publications; like the Directories and Show Dailies.
- Include your booth number and show logo in all of your promotional materials. Downloadable logos and banner ads are available here.
- Keep your message and graphic theme consistent and tie them in to your on-site display. This will help build booth traffic.
- If you volunteer everything in your advertising, such as product specifications and pricing, prospects have little reason to stop by your booth. Instead, design your ads to answer the customer question, "How can this product help me sell more or conduct my business better?"
Direct mail can be a very effective promotion that increases booth traffic and produces sales leads. Don't assume that one mailing will be enough to spark interest in prospects. Studies show that it takes at least three mailings to make a lasting impression with a prospect.* Plus, multiple mailings will establish your company as a major force in the industry and will drive home the point that your exhibit is worth seeing. A pre-registered attendee list is available for purchase. For more information, please contact Beth Gordon at 818.379.9460 or [email protected].
- Target individuals who have made an inquiry to your company in the past year, individuals who visited your display last year, and pre-registered show attendees.
* According to the Center for Exhibition Industry Research
GUEST PASSES/ANNOUNCEMENT CARDS
WSA offers guest passes/announcement cards free of charge for our exhibitors to mail out to their customers. These cards are a quick and easy way to invite your customers to the show and direct them to your booth. You will receive these cards in the mail upon request. Download the Order Form (pdf).
EXPLORE SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES
On-site sponsorships effectively generate booth traffic and promote your company's prominence and commitment to the footwear & accessories marketplace. Plus, you'll get extra mileage from your marketing dollars through mentions in the show's promotional materials. For more information, please contact Beth Gordon at 818.379.9460 or [email protected].
MAKE YOUR BOOTH "EVENT-FULL"
Stand out from the crowd by organizing an "event" at your booth. Transform your exhibit from "ho-hum" to exciting with fashion shows, celebrity autograph signings, raffles, visitor competitions, giveaways or presentations.
- Once you've "invented" an event, be sure to promote it.
- Add signage to your booth.
- Advertise your "show-stopping" activity in regular ads.
One of the most effective ways you have to grab attention is the booth itself. Your exhibit design should transmit your marketing message to the attendee in a few seconds and should generate interest for additional information. From there, your staff should have a thorough understanding of your products and how to present them.
- Remember to phrase your signage to answer this customer question, "How can this product help me to sell more or to conduct my business better?"
- Make sure that your exhibit design leaves enough room for prospects to walk around and see your products. A good booth set-up allots substantial room for flow space.
- Put the spotlight on any new products or services with high-impact graphics, special placement, live displays or event tie-ins.
- Keep your graphics consistent and related to your marketing message.
- Attendees won't stop to read a lengthy run-down on your products. Keep text brief and to the point.
- Have your staff wear similar clothing. It's an easy way to identify your personnel and to increase your company's visibility on the show floor.
WSA works hard to get the most exposure and media coverage we can for our show exhibitors. We are securing press coverage from both local and national media outlets and are looking forward to receiving great press this year! Below are a few tips on how to deal most effectively with the industry press in order top obtain maximum exposure and secure news coverage for your company while exhibiting at WSA.
Arranging Press Interviews
Everyone wants attention from the press, but most are not proactive about getting it. Let them know about you before they get to the show. To gain news coverage or news briefs in post-show issues of the industry publications, we suggest arranging press interviews in your booth for general information purposes, follow-up to a recently announced product, or for a "hot product" showing. Call ahead and set an appointment! The press should be contacted prior to the show to schedule a meeting, since their calendars are usually full by the week prior to the show.
Tell your story! Exhibitors are encouraged to display their information kits in the press room for easy access by the media. Access is restricted to accredited members of the working press. Up to 25 kits may be placed in the press room.
The WSA press list will be available to all exhibitors prior to the show. You may request the press list by sending an email to [email protected]
- General Tips
- Be sure to always include the show name The WSA Show in your releases. This will make it clear to the media where you are announcing or demonstrating your product as well as add credibility to your release.
- To avoid missing an opportunity, always contact your key media sources to book appointments in your booth even if they are not on the pre-registered press list. Keep in mind that many press register on-site.
- Remember to show excitement for your products and services when talking to the press. If you don't show excitement for your products, neither will they.
To encourage inclusion in any articles that will be written about WSA, we suggest issuing a press release summarizing your participation in the show (i.e. new product announcements, new product demonstrations, booth activities, sponsorship events, conference and keynote participation, etc.). If you are unable to announce your news before the show, you should still distribute news releases to your media contacts during or following the show. (HINT: Giveaways are always a great way to make the press remember your booth and your company or service.)