Trade shows and expos build customer relationships, introduce potential new customers to your business and give your company a real face, along with names, which customers can relate to.
Twitter is literally a zero cost way to make your trade show appearance a resounding success.
Below are seven steps to take on Twitter to make your appearance everything it can be:
1. Announce Your Trade Show on TweVite
Tweet Invitation Photo via Shutterstock
A successful trade show is like any other marketing campaign – it’s important to build interest before the event, during it and afterwards.
As soon as you book your booth, send out TweVites to your customers and let them know what booth you’ll be in and what you’re offering there.
2. Network With Others in the Show
Network Photo via Shutterstock
Don’t just depend on TweVites to bring customers in. Take the extra step and begin networking with others involved in the trade show.
Be willing to get out interesting information on the other vendors and they’ll think of you when someone comes by their booth or business in need of something you have to offer.
3. Host a Retweet Contest
Retweet Photo via Shutterstock
Offer a price or discount for the Twitter follower who retweets your posts about the trade show the most times.
This gives them an incentive to do your advertising for you, and allows your message to reach hundreds or thousands more people than your tweets alone could reach.
4. Post TwitPics
Event Photo via Shutterstock
Today’s consumer is more visual than ever before. If you have photos of the trade show or event from last year, post them on TwitPics before the event to build interest and excitement.
Continue to post pictures during the event, so people can see what great fun they’re missing. Attendees are likely to retweet these pictures (because they’re part of the action), giving you even more exposure.
5. Post Twitter Updates During the Show
Twitter Update Photo via Shutterstock
Continuing to post updates does two things: it generates interest in people who haven’t attended the show yet. It also attracts others at the show who haven’t visited your booth.
If trade show organizers have established a Twitter hashtag for the event, such as #OurTradeShow, be sure to include this in your tweet to draw in more new faces.
6.Tweet a Secret Password
Secret Photo via Shutterstock
People love to be “in the know.” A secret password they can use and pass around to get a special discount, sign up for a drawing or get free goodies is a great way to create interest and get people buzzing about your booth.
Knock, knock, let me in.
What’s the secret password?
7. Don’t Stop After the Show
Follow Me Photo via Shutterstock
If you’ve done everything else, you’ll likely gain a whole new following during the show. You’ll want to build relationships with these new contacts and keep in touch. Successful Twitter marketing means you’re always tweeting relevant industry information, news about your sales and new product offerings and recognizing your customer base.
Social media is the ideal way to keep people on your mind when they aren’t making purchase decisions, because that means you’ll be the first one they think of when they are ready to buy. Be sure to thank people who went out of their way to make the show (and your booth) a success.
Keep tweeting throughout the year to assure your booth a super turnout at the trade show next year.
I would add that it’s great because it’s so mobile friendly. Attendees at trade shows don’t have their desktops and rarely are on their laptops, so the mobile-friendly nature of Twitter plays in your favor.
I agree Robert, the mobile capability these days with smart phones, being able to take a picture, capture a video clip & then tweet about it is a powerful opportunity with Twitter. 🙂
I have to check out TweVite. One issue that the trade show place has to look into is the internet connection. I have attended fair events there you had a hard time to use Twitter due to the problem with the connection to the mobile operation and to the net.
I suggest that you have a special hashtag for the trade show and that you follow it along on Tagboard.
Yeah Martin, sometimes it’s hard when the event has poor internet access.
Great suggestion too. 🙂
Thanks for the comment.
Timothy: Thanks for your kind words! 🙂 Do you have a favorite trade show? Have you been at the Swedish Fair in Gothenburg?
I’ve had great success using Twitter while at conferences. In fact, I didn’t really “get it” until I was at BlogWorld 2008 and started using Twitter heavily. Now I and my clients get more followers and contacts from Twitter during a show.
That’s awesome Susan & what a great place to “get it”…while at BlogWorld! 🙂
Twitter is a powerful in a trade show. I’d even suggest businesses have their Twitter handle on their trade show display, a QR code that links back to their Twitter account. It’s an amazing way to continue the conversation/relationship with prospects/customers.
Bob's Trade Show Marketing
8. Offer Incentives for People To Tweet / Foursquare their Location When They are In Your Booth.
9. You’d Never EVER Just Tweet Out: “Microsoft.” Why Do It On Your Trade Show Displays? Craft An Imagination Challenging Headline For Your Booth Banners.
10. Make An App That Automatically Makes People
Subscribe to You
Incent them to download this app via a simple SHORT URL and a BIG GIFT.
I was at a large expo in the UK recently and all sorts of visitors were live tweeting. It not only made things far more exciting – and helped you to see who was visiting – but the expo actually became a trending topic on Twitter for a few hours which no doubt drove far more attention. After all, the better a show is marketed, the more we all benefit from it.