The second quarter is coming to a close and companies are already weighing in with their positive expectations about trade show marketing and marketing in general for the remainder of the year. Exhibitor Online shared the results of a recent survey in which they asked event planners and marketing leaders detailed questions about their marketing budgets for this year.
Notice in the graphic below that the two ways businesses are most increasing their budget for trade show marketing is in Exhibit Space and Exhibit Properties.
Great news for those in charge of expanding or updating their existing trade show displaydesign. If your boss likes to see numbers on what other successful businesses are doing as it relates to their trade show and in-person marketing, just print off a copy of this newsletter and show them…confidence is on the rise and marketing departments across the U.S. are spending more on trade show than ever before.
In fact, of all the businesses surveyed, only 25% are decreasing their advertising spend.
Focus continues to be with the in-person sales conversation and the number one benefit of the trade show experience is the fact that you sales team is exposed to thousands of potential customers within a short period of time.
Why Is In-Person Better than Digital?
You might feel that the sales funnel benefits more from the social or digital engagement and yet, it is the in-person relationship building that brings more qualified sales to the table. Why is that?
Rene Shimada Siegel, Founder of High Tech Connect wrote an article entitled 5 Reasons You Need to Meet in Person:
1. You’re off the record. In Silicon Valley and many other places, there are few private offices. Many of my clients work in cubes and can’t have private telephone conversations with me or anyone else. This means that when I talk to them on the phone, I might not get to hear the most important information they can share: the unique team dynamics or executive’s personality quirks that would make or break our ability to match an expert consultant. Over sushi or a latte or a walk around the block, my clients can let me know more — with more color — than they can over the telephone or in an email.
2. Make use of not-so-small talk. Most business conversations are focused on solving a problem quickly and efficiently, while business relationships are built when people take the time to share and learn more about each other. That happens more naturally in person than over the phone or in an email. What cements a bond between people? Small talk about a favorite team, passion for pecan pie, parenting challenges, and the other bits and pieces that make us unique and interesting.
3. Make an impression. I bought a new handbag. It’s faux ostrich and it’s pink. Really pink. I’ve received compliments on it from every woman (and one man) I’ve met with in the past two weeks. I had worried it was perhaps not professional enough for business. But the style and color were bold, “spring-y” and made me smile. Who knew my $60 knock-off handbag would be such a great conversation starter and deliver such a strong personal statement? How do you do that over Skype?
4. Read the body language. Facial expressions often communicate so much more than words. We host consultant coffees and invite a handful of independent consultants to our office in order to better understand the nuances of each professional in a relaxed setting. We need to know what isn’t on the resume that makes each person unique. In their eyes and in their body language, we can see confidence, empathy, fear, friendliness or sincerity. That ability to “read” a candidate beyond their keywords is a huge competitive advantage for us.
5. Learn where the action is. I find out so much when I visit one of my clients in their office. Is the lobby bright and inviting with recent accolades proudly displayed? Do employees seem happy? Is there free juice and healthy snacks in the cafeteria? Brand new Herman Miller chairs in the conference room? Is everyone moving in slow motion or is there a palpable buzz? The environment speaks volumes and may factor into your business proposal or plan. By understanding company dynamics, we can communicate more effectively to meet their needs.
Bottom Line:If your company is like most and increasing your trade show budget for 2015, it is not too late to make additions or modifications to your trade show display.
Also, if you are interested in learning about some of the trade show accessories and trade show graphics that are available to help with the interactive process, give us a call.
Give us a call – we are here to help.
If you would like to read the complete article from Exhibitor Online that includes an extensive infographic on marketing spend for 2015, click The 2015 Economic Outlook.