Don’t Let COVID-19 Stall Your Event Plans: Tips To Keep Momentum
Although we already had our office at the bottom of our garden, like many of you we’ve been trying to get used to the new normal and help support clients who have had events postponed or cancelled. Our main advice to them, as to you, is keep up the event plans, keep talking to those people you wanted to meet at the show, stay on their radar and ask what they need right now. It’s going to be a tough few months for everyone but already we’re hearing amazing stories of companies (previously strangers) helping each other. So for this edition we’re talking about how we can all make the most of the next few months.
Don’t Let Your Event Plans Stall – Help Yourself
Inevitably workloads are going to slow up and even with the greatest will in the world it can be tough to stay motivated. Events will be even more important in re-establishing engagement with those prospects who can help your business bounce back from the current challenges so what can you do now to help those events work as hard as possible in the future?
1. Identify your target audience
Do you know exactly who you want to meet at your event? What’s their job title and which sector are they in? If you don’t, now is the time to draw that portrait – try and be as specific as possible about their name, where they work, what their job role is and what problems they face every day – and then trawl your network, LinkedIn and all the other resources to identify them.
2. Introduce yourself
Once you know who you want to talk to, say hello. Tell them you’d hoped to meet them at the show but thought it would be a good opportunity to connect now, and then you can have a better conversation at the show when it does go ahead. Depending on how their business has been affected they may welcome the chance to take a break and chat for 10 minutes as opposed to staring at a screen whilst squeezed in the corner of their dining room.
3. Keep in touch
Don’t leave it until the new show dates have been announced to talk to customers and prospects. Use trade media, set up a blog page, offer to run an industry focus group, deliver some on-line training – find a way to keep visible and relevant to your wider audience and add value to either solve a problem or help them learn something new.
4. Trawl Instagram
No, not for endless pics of beach holidays you’re going to take when we’re out the other side. There are loads of great images and videos from stand designers, venues and organisers with examples of exhibition stands – start creating a file/list of elements you like, things you didn’t, different ideas and new technology. Why not get in touch with the originators to ask about their idea – they’d probably be glad to hear from you right now.
5. Read, read, read
We’d suggest The Exhibitionist is a good place to start to learn how to run a fantastic trade show campaign and just 10 minutes a day working through the Project Manager Journal will produce the perfect blueprint for success at your next event. But whether it’s on-line or in-print there are some amazing resources out there from stand design, to booth staffing, pre-show marketing to effective follow up – admittedly some of it can get quite ‘samey’ but keep digging as there are some real gems.
We want to do as much as we possibly can to help exhibitors bounce back stronger than ever, delivering even better returns – so how can we help you do that over the coming months?
The Exhibitionist Fast Flashes – we’re going to be recording a series of quick videos with some of the key advice and tips from our workshops for you to access free of charge and help you plan to make your next exhibition your best yet!
The Power Hour – usually £99 we’re dropping the price to £49 (+VAT) for you to get a personal 1:1 coaching session (via Zoom) that will address your specific trade show troubles! Just email us on [email protected] to book your session.
Research the Right Show / Audience – if you need some help in identifying which shows would give you the best chance of meeting your target audience we can do the ground work in providing you with a report on audience demographics, organiser flexibility, marketing opportunities and an attractiveness rating to achieve your SMART objectives.
Finding Your Voice – you might not know but the other half of our business is more traditional PR and specifically, trade comms so if you’re keen to keep talking to your audience but don’t know how – we can help! We can offer everything from running a full press office, through to simply writing a one-off press release. So whether you want to place some adverts, feature an interview with your CEO or get coverage in a feature why not get in touch.
Squad Training – if your team have time on their hands and access to a PC why not run a squad brainstorming or training session around how to get the most out of your next event. We can deliver this either as one webinar training session or e-modules. Things might happen quite quickly once exhibitions can be held again so why not take the time now to get your squad in the best possible shape for when you hit the show floor?
AND THIS IS WHERE WE ASK FOR YOUR HELP PLEASE!!
We’re all going to have to help each other during the coming weeks so as a valued client, connection or collaborator we’d like to ask if you could help with any of the following please?
Exhibitions 20:25 – the on-line survey for our research project in association with The UK Centre for Event Management remains open and we’d love to hear your thoughts – click here to complete it
Nominate a Podcast Guest – we haven’t run our planned Podcast episodes as it didn’t seem appropriate in the current climate – however we do want to keep them going as a source of advice and inspiration – if you know someone who would be valuable as a guest please let us know!
Share a Coffee – without any events on the horizon we’d love to have a coffee with new and existing contacts so please do get in touch and let’s book a date for a chat and a catch-up!
Refer Us – if you’ve worked with us in any capacity and like what we do it would be great if you could endorse us on LinkedIn, refer us to your contacts, send someone a copy of the book or send us a testimonial we can put on the website – it will all help when we’re back up and running!
Buy a Book or Journal – that revenue could really help over the coming months! If you are thinking of picking up a copy it would be great if you ordered directly from the website and we can personalise it for you.
And however you do help over the coming months – THANK YOU – we really appreciate it!
Here’s how to get in touch with us!
LinkedIn: Steve Reeder / Nichola Reeder