Trade shows offer construction companies a unique way to connect with their target audiences for a little face-to-face time. There’s really nothing like it today. Businesses of any size get to experience exposure to a large number of potential customers with the ability to interact with them personally.
For larger brand manufacturers trade shows are often a staple component in their overall marketing strategy mix. They are also often one of their marketing’s biggest line items. With average exhibit space costs anywhere from $2,000 to $20,000 per event, booth displays going from $3,500 to $15,000, shipping, marketing materials, promotions & giveaways, staffing, and travel expenses – your investment is clearly significant.
Remember though, trade shows can attract thousands of prospects and customers. Let’s not forget they also attract channel partners, editors, influencers, prospective employees and other valuable contacts. Furthermore, they provide you with the opportunity to gain and share knowledge about improved ways of building and doing business through attendee educational sessions, hands-on demonstrations, and networking events.
Companies Need Tradeshow Guidance
So while trade shows are undoubtedly valuable, companies still struggle to deliver ROI. According to a Regalix B2B Event Marketing Survey Report, 40 percent of marketers state a lack of conversion-optimized event marketing strategies is their biggest hurdle. Many companies haven’t quite figured out how to maximize their presence to garner the best results for their businesses.
Customer engagement will be at its highest when attendees and company representatives have some time to begin communicating and building relationships.
For construction companies this means having several key trade show pieces in place, including preshow communication tactics, a well-designed display space that grabs attendees’ attention, great customer interaction inside the booth, an effective drawing or contest and marketing collateral, proper post show follow-up and measurement metrics. If you do these things well, you’ll leave a lasting impression that can produce results months down the road and year-over-year.
Tradeshow Investments Worth Making
A strategic approach construction companies can take involves implementing multi-channel event marketing for your preshow and post-show communication. Getting your message out digitally will improve your reach to prospects and potential attendees and help convert them to customers after the event. Here are three tactics that will help you produce solid leads from your next tradeshow.
Create impactful messaging
Preshow – To drive booth traffic and engagement, craft creative calls to action that can be used in emails, a microsite, blog posts, tweets, and all your communications about the event. Describe how your construction products and services can help prospective customers and the value they’ll receive by visiting your booth.
Post-show – Emails are a great tool for follow-ups and the first one should be sent with 24-48 hours of the event. Be sure to include a call to action that is laser focused because if you try to promote too many things it may confusing for the prospect. Personalize your follow-up emails and include the name of the representative that spoke with him or her at the event.
Develop an event microsite
Preshow – Create relevant content for an event you will be exhibiting at in the future to increase brand awareness and promote attendance. The microsite should include all the essentials about the trade show, booth location and promotions. Target copy to your audience and include calls to action that will get potential attendees to interact with your brand.
Post-show – Thank all the attendees who visited your booth and include a picture of your booth to help them remember you. Also present a gated offer for prospects to receive an industry white paper, demo or estimate to help you qualify your leads, plus determine the hottest ones.
Generate buzz with event-related social posts
Preshow – Utilize social platforms to talk about what you will be featuring at the event. Write blog posts on topics about event sessions, speakers, breakout sessions, etc. Consider using LinkedIn to promote posts as sponsored content to garner more interest in visiting your booth. Also, post to Facebook and Twitter to reach different audiences and emphasize event promotions.
During and Post-show – Share some fun photos from your booth or a quick video highlighting the event on Instagram and Snapchat. They may even have a filter to help you identify the event. Write a follow-up blog about a education session or interesting information you learned that others in the construction industry will find useful.
These tactics are all about spreading the word in advance of the event, during the event and for keeping in touch after the event. You’ll generate an active and receptive audience before the show that in turn can increase high-quality interactions during the event. Timely, impactful post-show communication will help create lasting relationships with prospects and engage them with your brand until they become customers. Multi-channel event marketing provides a solid strategy to help construction companies produce a positive ROI from their tradeshow efforts in 2019.