In today’s digital marketplace, it might be difficult for a small business to see the value of a trade show. After all, potential customers have access to all they think they need to know about your business from your website and social media, reviews, and comparison shopping. Unfortunately, misperceptions are impossible to correct if a customer never approaches you with a question. Trade shows can be one way of putting a person in front of your customer to develop a trusting relationship that can lead to questions, answers, and sales.
Loyal customers are only loyal if they trust you and your business. It’s hard to develop that kind of relationship without face-to-face contact, but trade shows offer you that opportunity. It’s kind of like a first date. They’re checking you out, getting a feel for your integrity, the quality of what you’re offering, and if you are someone they’d want to have a relationship with. So friendly, knowledgable, and engaging staff at your trade show booth will go a long way in getting that all-important second date.
How do you approach a first date? Loud, flashy clothes? Talking about yourself too much? Of course not. And your trade show booth shouldn’t do this, either. Elegant, understated, yet highly professional booths are one key to making that good first impression and drawing potential customers to your display. Keep the “attraction” focused on your product, not on giveaways or unrelated activities. You will need to talk about yourself, your business, but remember that expressing interest in the customer is even more important. When a customer believes you have an interest in helping them achieve a goal, they will trust you and become a loyal customer.
At the trade show, you have an opportunity to talk to customers about things they won’t find on your website or social media page. By asking questions, you discover things about your customers that will help you find the right product or service to fit their needs. No website can do that the way a personal interaction can. Make the most of your time on the floor to get to know customers and let them get to know you. The customer loyalty returns will be huge and your time at the exhibition will have been well spent.