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Tips for a Successful United Fresh!
Dan’l making the most of “face-to-face” – photo courtesy of DMA Solutions
Ahhh… it’s tradeshow season. The smell of lanyards, giveaways and freshly printed business cards is in the air. So break out your comfy shoes, buy a new pack of breath mints and get ready to expose your company… in a good way, of course.
At DMA, we live for this sort of stuff and are committed to sharing what we have seen make or break some tradeshow exhibitors over the years (we won’t say how many). Sure, most of your “grunt work” is probably done by now, but these down-to-the-wire goodies can be the extra effort that takes you from good to great.
We’ve broken our list down into “Gotta’s” (things we think you gotta do) and “The Icing” (those extras that add just the right finishing touch to your presence). So here it is – free for the taking – some of the best advice for a remarkable United Fresh 2012 experience!
Go For The Goals
You’ve probably already set sales goals and identified your targets, but sales aren’t the only golden opportunities at most events, United Fresh included. Decide what you want to LEARN about and include sessions, networking events and specific meetings in your plan to achieve that. Plan to be INSPIRED, as well. New products, suppliers and emerging trends abound at these events and are perfect for giving you a fresh outlook on business as usual.
Educate your booth staffers
Don’t assume that your tradeshow team is totally in-tune with your current marketing messages. Make a quick list of the top three things that every booth visitor should walk away having learned from your booth/staff. Equip each booth staffer with the list and quiz them before each day of the show.
Bring plenty of business cards – more than you think you could ever need. Better yet, print up special cards just for tradeshow events so you stand out from the stack. Clever, unique cards will make you more memorable and lessen the likelihood that your paper swag will end up in the trash.
This sounds so simple, yet you’d be surprised how many people miss the memo on matching shirts. No matter how big or small your company, make sure all booth staffers are wearing similar attire. Branded golf shirts, dress shirts or even T-shirts will set you apart from booth groupies and stragglers letting legit visitors know who to talk to.
Spread the word
Last, but certainly not least, don’t forget to market your presence at United Fresh 2012 before, during and after the show.
Positive Press for the Taking!
Capitalize on all of United’s PR initiatives surrounding the Let’s Move Salad Bars to Schools campaign. Attend the press event at United Fresh recognizing salad bar donors and/or provide photos and quotes about your donation to be featured on the White House’s blog! All it takes to receive this potential press coverage is ONE salad bar donation.
Leverage Facebook, FourSquare, Pinterest and Twitter accounts using the event hashtag (#unitedfresh2012) to keep attendees updated about what’s happening. Tweets and posts can be scheduled ahead of time so that you aren’t glued to your laptop or smartphone during crucial networking hours.
No matter how many stressballs, chip clips and pens people collect at tradeshows they still expect freebies at each and every booth they visit. It is an unspoken rule: tradeshow swag is a must. People will undoubtedly stand in line for random promo items even if their only intention is to pawn it off on their kid as a souvenir. However, if you give away something USEFUL that also delivers your message, your freebie will continue to sell for you, even after the event.
Don’t eat in the booth
Nothing says, “Man, I’m here to make sales” like a booth worker munching on a big, juicy tradeshow bite. Not really. Save snack time for your walk around the show floor.
Go the boyscout route and be prepared for headaches, heartburn, paper cuts and bad breath by putting together a first-aid kit of your favorite pain reliever, band-aids and breath mints!
So What?: Nothing beats face-to-face interaction! So, no matter if you decide to “ice your cake” or stick to the “gotta’s”, the important thing is you’re there, you’re networking and you’re reaching out to other people in your industry. And if, in the end, nobody’s stopping at your booth, you can always heed the advice of Seth Godin, blog master extraordinaire, because he sums it up best:
“The easiest way in the world to attract a crowd at a trade show–hire some folks to film your booth, preferably with bright lights, Bauer battery packs and a big-ass camera. Sure enough, people will show up, like moths to a candle.”
Posted by: The DMA Solutions Team
Tags: #unitedfresh2012, foursquare, Let's Move, Let's Move Salad Bars to Schools, pinterest, Salad Bars, tradeshow goals, Tradeshow strategy, Tradeshow tips, tradeshows, Twitter, UFPA, United Fresh, United Fresh 2012, White House Blog