It’s a new year and everyone in the industry has been waiting to hear three words: “Trade shows are back!” We will hear this in 2021, hopefully sooner rather than later. But what does it mean and what will trade shows look like?
You get the green light, and now it’s time to prepare for an in-person event. Besides completing your usual tasks for an event, you still need encourage exhibitors to enhance their presence online. Attendees will be preparing and researching now more than ever before and will look to your show’s online directory and floor plan to answer questions they may have.
To get ready for your event, be sure to include resources for exhibitors such as webinars and best practices. It’s important for exhibitors to know all their options when it comes to enhancing their showroom so they can choose the right fit to educate the attendee on what they are offering before, during and after the show.
The next step is for exhibitors to add content. You will need to provide login information to each exhibitor giving them access to their Exhibitor Dashboard. Encourage exhibitors to get familiar with the dashboard and update their online profile as soon as possible. Here is an example of a robust, online profile!
What Can Your Attendees and Exhibitors Expect?
They have tested negative, cleared security and are finally on a plane for the first time in over a year. Now what? First, you should advise everyone to download the show mobile app. Encourage everyone to make themselves familiar with the app so they can stay current on show information, updates, and ways to connect through online profiles and dashboards.
Once everyone arrives at the show, they should expect to see socially distanced lines, capacity restrictions, a plethora of sanitizing stations, and eating areas with much more space between seats and tables. Depending on where your show is located, they can also expect to see varying degrees of face-mask guidelines. This is the new normal, and we should anticipate these changes.
Trade show interaction is going to be focused more on one-one meetings with more business being done at the show rather than larger gatherings outside/after hours. Therefore, it’s important that exhibitors leverage their preparation to schedule as many meetings as possible. The show may look different, but the goal is still the same: ABC (Always Be Closing).
It’s Time to Quarantine
The show is over, time to quarantine! Just kidding, but it is time to follow-up. Tell exhibitors to analyze their notes, dig into their leads and schedule Zoom follow-up calls. Congratulations – you made it through your first tradeshow in 2021. Tradeshows are back!