10 Tips for Making the Most of Social Media at Trade Shows - Social Media Explorer
10 Tips for Making the Most of Social Media at Trade Shows
10 Tips for Making the Most of Social Media at Trade Shows

Most people are used to tweeting, liking, and friend-requesting while doing a million other things. Social media doesn’t work that way at marketing events.

Here are 10 action points for making any exhibit the talk of the trade show.

1. Define the goals.

Measuring success is a tough job to do if concrete goals aren’t in place. Before starting any campaign, deciding the end-goal first is essential.

There is no time to be vague. Listing specific goals such as “Increasing the number of Twitter followers by 30 percent.” will keep one tied to it and help run the campaign on track.

2. Stick to the plan.

Planning every phase of the trade show in detail is a sure shot way to end it successfully. How, when, or at which stage will social media incorporate?

Creating a buzz beforehand by announcing contests or giveaways is an excellent way to kickstart. Making sure that the pre-show teasers include relevant information is essential. The exhibit may go unnoticed if the booth number is omitted.

Letting up during the show won’t affect the results as it should have. Posting stimulating content that generates traffic and reacts to trending topics is the way to go. If the handle’s continuously engaged at the event, the followers will be too.

Recapping the event and sharing the impressions will engage the attendees. Thanking every individual, asking for feedback, and engaging with new contacts on LinkedIn is imperative for a good outcome.

With careful planning and follow-through, a robust and lasting impression can be made.

3. Bring everyone on board.

With any luck, things will get chaotic at the booth during the show. There won’t be any time to monitor or update the feed.

Designating a social media leader should be a priority if a team is to be headed up. Getting everyone involved in posting using the show’s official hashtag should be social media handler’s target.

4. Provide value.

Keeping variety and value in mind while posting is necessary. A constant stream of sales pitches is as worthless as spam.

Including quote for each day, sharing impressive survey results or blogs written by industry experts are some excellent options.

The expert need not be modest. The expert must join discussions, field questions, and share valuable advice if asked.

Providing value is sometimes as simple as pointing out-of-towners to the best local restaurants.

5. Mind your hashtags.

Trade show hashtags are as valuable to exhibitors as footprints are to detectives.

Trending hashtags will help one connect with attendees and gauge their interest in their brand. One can find out what the attendees hope to experience and what information they lack. Being in a prime position to serve will pay off.

One can also find out what their competitors are up to.

Hashtags are most prevalent on Twitter, of course, but neglecting them on Instagram or Facebook is a fool’s mistake.

Giving meaning to the hashtag will pull people to use it. Hosting a Twitter chat is one possibility.

6. Be selective.

Facebook isn’t necessarily the best place to post running updates. Using it primarily for end-of-day recaps and photos will be more practical.

Instagram is ideal for pictures of the booth and videos of product demos. Showing off those custom portable trade show displays will be mesmerizing.

For lightning-speed updates, Twitter is the best amongst all. Killing two birds with one stone by linking other social media accounts with Twitter is a smart move.

There’s more to Pinterest than recipes and seasonal home décor. Boosting traffic with eye-catching graphics and engaging blogs from web pages will be clever. While scrolling there, one can find valuable resources for their next exhibit.

One can reach out to contacts in the industry before the show, and chime them in on group discussions as well.

7. Make it personal.

One ought not be a robot or corporate mouthpiece. People don’t like it. Maybe some do, but not the most.

One needs to be human, warm, and genuine. Let the winner’s personality resonate in every post.

8. Get out more.

Social media is not the only thing during a trade show.

One must take short breaks from insanely busy exhibit whenever possible. Making the rounds and chatting with as many people as possible will build connections as well as business cards.

Following up on leads soon after the show implies interest. There’s nothing wrong with pursuing social connections as well.

9. Show your work.

People love engaging in a project from start to finish.

Posting photos, videos, and commentary as the exhibit are being built is a great way to showcase. Creating suspense; Finishing up with a fun before-and-after post is all that individuals expect of the social media.

10. Tweet in person.

As the show nears its end, organizing a tweetup is a bright idea. That’s a planned get-together of Twitter group members.

Meeting in person can be awkward or intimidating at first. Choosing a casual setting and inviting as many people as possible will light it up. Some fun icebreakers or engaging topics of conversation ahead of time can save the day.

Avoiding discussions regarding business or products is the best way to build a relation. Making it fun should be the goal.

What to Do When the Dust Settles

Wrapping up with what was impressive and what was educating is one of the first things to do.

Dropping hints about future products and/or services, and engaging with new leads and acquaintances is a value-giver as well.

When the dust settles, reviewing the performance based on the “List of goals” is crucial.

Which goals were achieved? Which weren’t? Were any off-target, to begin with? What could be done differently for second chances?

Pinpointing areas where improvement can be made will come in handy for the next exhibit.

Till then, Continuing to expand the circle of influence by providing value in the social media community should the prime intention.

Being patient if responses take a while is a sign of maturity. Giving people a chance to engage in every possible way is the sure shot way to not let the buzz go away.

One’s brand will be the first thing to spring off the mind when the requirement of a certain product or service comes.

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About the Author

David van der Ende is a full-time blogger and part-time graphic design enthusiast. He loves to write about a broad range of topics, but his professional background in both legal and finance drives him to write on these two subjects most frequently.

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