Tag Archives: Event Marketing

Get Social at Your Next Trade Show: How to Use Social Media to Boost Your Event Marketing

10 Aug


Even in an increasingly digitized marketing world, a well-executed trade show presence is an indispensable part of a solid marketing strategy for any B2B company. And just because trade shows are a more traditional way of getting the word out about your product or brand doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of the benefits of real-time communication and instant exposure made possible through social media.

Social Media Plays a Key Role in B2B Marketing

According to the Content Marketing Institute’s 2017 B2B report, 68% of B2B marketers incorporate trade shows and similar in-person events as part of their marketing plan—but just 36% report that their events are effective.

A well-executed social media campaign can dramatically change that.

When done with a bit of planning and creativity, social media can help maximize visibility and attendance at your next big event. As an added bonus, it offers a convenient platform for repurposing your content and leveraging your trade show investment long after the event wraps up.

Check out a few of our favorite tips on getting the most out of your trade show through social media:

Customize Twitter Hashtags, Livestream to Engage Event Attendees, and Follow Up with LinkedIn Connections 

Depending on your level of participation in your trade show, you may have access to a list of contacts for partners, key speakers, and potential attendees. Leverage your contact list with these steps:

  • Follow them on Twitter and add them to a Twitter List
  • Create a company-specific hashtag and use it alongside the event’s official hashtag to tweet about your upcoming event
  • Start tweeting early—even as early as a few months before the event—to build relationships with partners, key players, and attendees and to increase the visibility of your event.

During set-up and while the event is taking place, engage employees and booth visitors with photos and video—and then use your hashtags to get your content where you want it via live tweets.

Twitter Tip:

If you think you’ll be too busy to manage social media at the event, consider using a social media management platform or hiring a social media partner to schedule bulk tweets beforehand. Then, add to those with live tweets as often as possible during the show.

Leverage Live Streaming: Offer Contests, Product Demos, and Giveaways to Engage Your Followers

Take some time to learn how livestream works in advance of the event. Whether you’re using Instagram Live, Facebook Live, or YouTube, do a few livestream trial runs beforehand: stream a production run, a project completion, or a customer testimonial to liven up your social feed on a regular workday.

By the time the event rolls around, livestreaming will be second nature!

At the Trade Show

Take advantage of the real-time opportunities for livestreaming during the event. Ask customers for testimonials, interview employees about their trade show activities, and engage partners in conversations about the benefits of your product and your company.

Livestreaming offers a great way to bring the trade show to those that couldn’t be there in person, and allows you to add some action and authenticity to your social presence.

After the Trade Show

Repurpose your livestream content to create a trade show recap that highlights your customers’ experience with your product and your company. Clip short snippets from the stream for future posts when you’re looking to show off your company’s personality.

LinkedIn for Long-Lasting Trade Show Connections

LinkedIn can be a bit cumbersome to use in real-time at the event, but it makes a great follow-up tool to reconnect with key players and potential clients long after the event shuts its doors.

If your contact is already a LinkedIn connection (and in limited cases even when they aren’t), you can use the “InMail” feature for direct messaging. Shoot your contacts a brief note thanking them for their time and interest, or simply to say that you’re glad you had a chance to talk and you’d like to keep in touch. You can also use the message as to segue way to offer access to a white paper or an invitation to an upcoming networking event.

If your contact is not yet a LinkedIn connection, go to their profile and click on the ellipsis at the top right. Click “Personalize Invitation” and write a brief message in the text box before sending your connection request.

Follow the above tips to integrate traditional in-person marketing strategies with the far-reaching capabilities of social media. If you need help designing and deploying your social media strategy, reach out to us for advice!

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10 Trade Show Tips That Speak for Themselves

22 Dec

Be in the Know Before the Show

Trade Show Gift

When you’ve been in the building products industry for long enough, you learn some valuable lessons about attending a trade show and making the most of your time there. That’s how I know that every year, January marks more than just the start of the new year—it’s also the start of what we in the building products industry call “trade show season.”

Trade shows are fun and an  teffective way to meet prospects; they’re also hectic and crazy. Over the years, I’ve lost count of all the trade shows I’ve attended, but the lessons learned have stuck with me.

I’ve compiled a quick list of tips for attending a trade show that need no further explanation:

  1. Follow all the handles/hashtags for the event to keep current—before, during, and after an event.
  2. Visit the website before the show to view the map against the schedule of speakers you’d like to attend. Don’t be that freshman who schedules back-to-back classes across campus.
  3. Download the app for the show beforehand (if they have one).
  4. Wear comfortable shoes—you’ll be walking. Hint: if your feet are hurting, seek out the booths that paid extra for carpet padding.
  5. Bring enough business cards.
  6. Have a plan for how you’re going to follow up with the prospects you meet. Then, follow through with it.
  7. Pack a backup phone battery and bring it with you. Thank me later.
  8. Don’t be that guy who eats your lunch at a table in a booth. Sit with prospects and meet new people.
  9. Know how long it takes to get to the nearest bathroom and back so you don’t miss something important.
  10. Wi-Fi isn’t always a given. Plan accordingly.

I’ve had to learn some of these lessons the hard way—but follow these tips and you won’t have to. Consider it my trade show season gift to you.

For more trade show tips and tricks, see my last roundup post here.

Bonus tip for those who made it to the bottom of this post: If you take nothing else away from this, remember that the Lowe’s booth always has fresh-baked cookies. Just be careful not to burn your mouth if they’re fresh out of the oven.

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