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The Awakening of a Proactive Trade Show Marketer
Mike Thimmesch / Skyline Trade Show Tips / July 8, 2013
At some point during the career of fortunate exhibit marketers, they have a startling revelation: They don’t have to remain “the victim” who manages an out-of-control trade show program. They can push back against all the forces of chaos, make good, informed decisions, and significantly improve their company’s trade shows performance. They can “be the change.”
Before the awakening, the reactive trade show manager focused just getting through the day-to-day hustle of managing the logistics of their trade show booths. It was all about reacting to requests and emergencies made by other people who perhaps did not see the entire trade show picture – and its greater potential.
Let’s look at how evolving from a reactive to a proactive trade show manager improves decisions and results for all the key aspects of their trade show program.
1. Set Objectives and Measure Results: Know why you exhibit
Before the awakening, the reactive trade show manager did not even know why their company was exhibiting at all, and even if they did, they didn’t make an effort to find out if they achieved those goals. The phrase, “We are at that show because we’ve always exhibited there” is commonly heard. Without set objectives to aim for, decisions are made aimlessly, like a ship without a rudder. They shrug their shoulders and say, “We had a good show, right?” without having any good data to back it up.
After the awakening, this is no longer good enough. Proactive trade show managers always know why they are exhibiting. They set goals and objectives for each show – and then measure if they met or exceeded them. Budget items no longer are sacred cows. Everything becomes either a help or a hindrance towards exhibiting success. With that view, they cut budget items that don’t pull their weight, and expand items that increase their results. Plan, do, measure, adjust. Again and again.