Let’s face it. Trade shows are expensive. Between renting the booth space, paying for your team’s travel expenses, creating an attractive booth, printing literature, and purchasing giveaway items, trade shows can be a major investment and eat up a large portion of your overall marketing budget.
So why not maximize your spend by using public relations and social media at the show?
Here are 5 of the ways that we support our clients at tradeshows— before, during and after—with “SocialPR.”
1) Meet the press. Journalists in your industry are attending your trade shows and looking for new content to write about. Ask the show organizers for an attending press list and reach out to those journalists to set up appointments in your booth. Designate a subject matter expert to tell journalists about everything new happening with your company and find out what type of content they are looking for. Tradeshows are also a fantastic relationship-building tool for the media. Getting face time with them will help your cause when pitching news and positioning your company as the go-to expert in your industry.
2) Develop a press kit. Be sure to develop press releases around any and all new things your company has going on. Give the press kit to the journalists coming to the booth, leave them in the trade show’s pressroom and send to any journalists you were unable to meet with at the show. It can be printed, electronic or both, but many journalists don’t even want paper anymore.
3) Capture it with photos and videos. Tradeshows are a great opportunity to get compelling multimedia content that resonates with your audience. Snap photos of employees, customers and everything going on in the booth. Get your subject matter experts on video talking about what is new and exciting. Bonus points for getting a customer on camera! You can upload this content right away to your social media channels, both reaching customers at the event and others who were unable to go but can now attend “virtually.”
4) Get social. Start building excitement for the event about a month ahead of time on your social media channels. Then keep a steady stream of updates live from the event, making sure to use event hashtags (e.g. #RoofingShow) and engage with others using social media at the show. Finally, provide re-caps and photo albums once the show has wrapped up like this one from a show we attended last week.
5) Hold an in-booth survey. Arm your team with iPads and have them ask customers stopping by your booth questions about their business or an industry issue. You will get the most participation by entering participants in a raffle. After the show, analyze the results and release them on your social media channels as well as share the results with your industry’s journalists.
Don’t forget to measure your results and prove the value of your hard work. We look at things like circulation and ad equivalency of resulting articles, blog and website visits, and engagement on social media channels (e.g. likes, re-tweets, comments).
As you can see there are many ways to beef up your social media and PR efforts and get more “bang for your buck” while at trade shows.
How do you maximize your presence at trade shows with PR and social media?