Tradeshow Marketing

5 Digital Marketing Strategies to Promote Your Booth at Trade Shows

Searching for ways to promote your trade show booth? Check out this post for 5 digital marketing strategies that can help boost your trade show ROI.

The B2B exhibition industry in the US has more or less recovered from the severe downturn caused by COVID-19. According to CEIR, the cancellation rate for in-person B2B events stood at 9.2% in Q1 of 2022. In Q1 of 2021, 91.3% of events were canceled. 

But while the exhibition industry continues to improve, the pandemic has significantly impacted consumer behavior. For instance, the digital surge reached record highs as people were locked into their homes. 

As per a Pew Research Center Survey, 53% of US adults agreed that the internet has been essential for them during the pandemic.

Digital Marketing to Promote Trade Show Participation

Be it entertainment, getting the latest news updates, staying connected with family and friends, or working, the internet has become essential to our everyday lives. While you no longer need to only rely on virtual events as physical trade shows are back to normal, you definitely can use digital channels for trade show promotion.  

After all, according to DataReportal data, an average American spends around 7 hours looking at screens every day. And if you want more people to know about your booth at an upcoming exhibition, you have to be present where people are spending a significant chunk of their daily lives.

So, How to Use Digital Strategies to Promote Trade Show Participation?

Here are 5 strategies that can help-

1- Share Videos and Photos

Visual content like videos and photos rule the digital landscape. The extensive popularity of social media and platforms like YouTube and TikTok attest to their popularity.

Whether you’re working on your pre-trade show marketing strategy or the event is already underway, you can use visual content in many different ways to promote your booth.

[READ: Trade Show Planning Guide]

Here are some examples-

  • Share video and photo updates through your social media handle
  • Send pre-show emails with a link to a video explaining your product/service
  • Create and share infographics that highlight the USPs of your brand and product/service
  • Upload event videos/photos on the homepage of your website

And if you’re concerned about the cost of professional-quality videos and photos, know that there are several online tools that allow you to do it for free. For instance, you can use Canva to create banners, posters, collages, video intros, and a lot more.

Rest assured, you won't need anything more than a smartphone and some creativity to create appealing visual content.

2- Work on an Email Strategy

An email strategy is vital for the pre and post-trade show marketing stages. While the pre-show emails work towards getting more traffic to your booth, post-show emails support your conversion goals.

Pre-Show Emails

You can send pre-show emails a few weeks before the event to let people know you're participating in the upcoming trade show. Once the event is only a few days away, you can also send reminder emails.

Here are a few tips for pre-show emails-

  • Create an email calendar and coordinate it with your social media calendar
  • Start sending emails at least 6-8 weeks in advance
  • Ensure every email contains a CTA (Call-To-Action)
  • Send emails to current customers and event contacts from your previous shows

Post-Show Emails

Once the trade show is over, don’t wait too long to send follow-up emails to all the leads. For the best results, you can divide the leads into hot, warm, and cold and create individual follow-up strategies for all three.

[READ: Trade Show Lead Management Planning]

Here are a few tips to help you with your post-show email strategy-

  • Know the objective before you start writing the emails
  • Use an eye-catching subject line
  • Use strong openers that provide an instant context of the email
  • End the email with a CTA

3- Use Your Website for Trade Show Promotion

An often overlooked trade show digital marketing strategy is using your website. If your website receives plenty of traffic, you can use it in many different ways to promote your booth.

A few examples are-

  • Promote your participation on your website’s homepage.
  • Use banners or pop-ups to let website visitors know you’re participating in an upcoming exhibition.
  • Create a separate page with detailed information about your booth.
  • Create a lead collection form where people interested in visiting your booth can submit their contact details in return for a special preview/giveaway/discount that can be availed at the booth.
  • Write blog posts highlighting your trade show participation and the things visitors can expect from your booth, like product/service presentations, keynote speakers, giveaways, booth games, etc.  

4- Go Live During the Event

Going live on social media is one of the best strategies if you're looking for exhibition marketing ideas during the event. Popular platforms like YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram now have the live video feature.          

You can pre-set the time and date of the live trade show booth coverage and promote the same before the event. 

For instance, you can include this information in your pre-show emails and social media updates so that even people who couldn’t attend physically can at least experience your booth virtually. 

The live coverage from the booth can include-

  • Product/service presentation or demo
  • Keynote speech
  • Interviews
  • QnA session
  • Attendees enjoying the booth activity

5- Deploy Custom Trade Show Trivia to Digitize Lead Collection

While this is not really a digital event promotion strategy like the ones discussed above, it can definitely turn the tide in your favor on a busy trade show floor.

Booth activities like a custom quiz work as a crowd puller. With most others relying on overused strategies to attract booth visitors, you can stand apart by offering something unique and engaging.

[READ: 5 Reasons Why Gamification is So Effective at Live Events]

Moreover, such activities also allow you to digitize the lead collection process. Here’s how it works-

  1. Booth visitors fill up a simple lead collection form before playing the game
  2. Quiz is connected to an online lead collection platform where the lead details are securely stored
  3. Once the event is over, the trivia provider shares lead data with the exhibitor
  4. Alternatively, exhibitors can also access the data by logging in to their online quiz account

Using Digital Strategies to Succeed at Trade Shows

As can be seen, digital channels can play a vital role in your trade show marketing strategy. If you’re currently working on your exhibition plan, take advantage of these digital strategies to ensure you leave no stone unturned in your bid to succeed at the event.

If you’re looking for a fun and engaging booth activity that could help you with your event objectives, our custom trade show trivia can help. Register for a demo to know more.

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