Robyn Sachs has headed RMR & Associates since 1987. As one of the top practitioners of trade show marketing , she fully understands that to gain attention, marketing demands a higher order of creativity. But we also know your trade show marketing must sell. So we build accountability into every client’s program. Because we’re not just another one of the trade show marketing agencies. We realize that all of your marketing communications must be measurably productive.
Robyn Sachs, President of RMR & Associates, one of the leading woman-owned agencies and designers of trade show marketing, located in Rockville, MD says: If you’re looking for trade show marketing , no one will work harder for you to get the results you want than we will. And we have over 250 company and product roll-outs to prove it!
Says Sachs: Let me explain a little more about the way trade shows work when it comes to agencies and advertising creative and why you should go with RMR.
According to trade show authority Steve Miller, author of the best-seller How To Get the Most Out of Trade Shows, the average state, regional, and national trade show in the U.S. turns over 30-40% of its exhibitors every year … largely because companies don’t see any measurable return on their exhibiting investment. Yet for some companies who participate in the same shows year after year, exhibiting is one of their most important marketing activities.
Doing trade shows right is hard work. Here’s a checklist to help your next exhibit meet your expectations.
1. Set measurable objectives. Measurable means quantifiable. Whether your objective is to generate leads, make appointments for the weeks following the show, or sell product right on the show floor, set a specific goal of how many.
2. Establish a plan to achieve them. Are your objectives in line with the show’s audience size, the available exhibit hours, and your ability to spend sufficient time with prospects? Good. Now you have to devise a way to reach those objectives. Assign responsibilities to everybody on your trade show team.
3. Set a budget. Only with a budget equal to the task at hand can all your planning and objectives pay off. Costs of trade show participation include: space rental, the exhibit, shipping and storage, on-site services, travel, and pre-show promotion. How much should go to each item? Steve Miller’s rule of thumb is to assign half your budget to marketing and promotion efforts. That is, you should spend as much promoting your exhibit as you do building it.
4. Train your staff. The trade show floor is totally unlike any other selling environment. But according to research by the Trade Show Bureau, very few companies train their exhibit staffs. Without training, how else will your staff learn how to qualify a prospect? Gauge a customer’s needs? Follow up after the initial contact? Educating your staff could return more than any other part of your trade show investment.
5. Give prospects a reason to visit the company’s booth. This means promote your exhibit in advance. We could devote a whole page to this topic alone. And we have!
6. Be ready to gather information. You’ve got to be standing up and ready to talk with every customer who comes into your exhibit. Sitting down, chatting with your co-workers, and simply not paying attention are sure ways to reduce the leads you gather.
7. Follow up after the show. Make your staff accountable for post-show contact. Require written feedback on every follow-up call.
Robyn Sachs is the president of RMR & Associates, a full-service advertising, marketing and public relations firm based in the Washington metropolitan area that specializes in the high tech industry and is known nationally for its innovative campaigns. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. We welcome your comments or questions.