The Value of Conventions & Tradeshows


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Conventional Wisdom: How to Publicize Products & Services at Conventions

Conventions and trade shows are the most cost-effective methods to publicize many types of products and services. This section presents strategies and action plans to help ensure that you achieve maximum coverage.

Attending or exhibiting at a trade show or convention can be expensive, but the benefits from the exposure can be well worth it. This chapter discusses the planning, preparations, and activities you need to complete in advance in order to get the most out of any show.

The Value of Conventions and Trade Shows

Conventions and trade shows offer the greatest opportunity for companies to get press coverage. Imagine 400-500 of the most influential reporters from the key magazines being in the same city and hotel for a week and their assignment is to find out what is new and interesting. Remember, they need you as much as you need them! They have to fill thousands of pages with news, so they’re eager to find interesting stories. Your job is to find out who they are, get their attention and make your story interesting.

There are a variety of ways to meet and talk to the press at a convention.

You can demonstrate your product to reporters at your booth or hospitality suite. You can talk with reporters as they emerge from the press room, walk about the convention floor, or stand in line for a taxi ride to a party. No other gathering offers as many opportunities for press contact as a convention.

The payoff for publicizing at trade shows and conventions is great. News articles in trade publications can lead to thousands of requests for product information, and more important, thousands of orders. Products can become overnight sensations when you follow the right strategy. They may die an obscure death if you don’t.

The techniques and strategies presented have been developed by participating at some of the largest trade shows in the world, where it’s easy for people and products to get lost in the shuffle. After working through this section, you’ll be armed with proven strategies for getting noticed. You can apply these strategies at large trade shows, national association conventions, as well as regional and local trade shows or fairs, and create the attention you want for your product and company.