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5 Custom Tradeshow Booth Ideas Guaranteed To Attract Clients

You’ve expanded your marketing budget, signed up for the relevant trade shows in your market, and put your dream team together to draw in leads. Now, all you have to do is put up a fancy display, show up, and watch the money flow in, right? 

As you know, attracting clients is never that easy. Tradeshows are the most popular form of meeting for businesses in North America, so you have to deal with competitors working hard to attract the same people you’re targeting. The good news is that there are steps you can take to maximize your marketing budget’s ROI. 

Read on to learn 5 custom tradeshow booth ideas that will help you attract clients and dominate your competition. We’ll also examine the mindset you need to take as a business to set up a successful display.

Customer Engagement is More Than a Catch Phrase

There isn’t a business in the world that doesn’t talk about customer engagement. Businesses build their entire marketing strategy around the idea of ‘taking care of the customer’ or ‘treating their customers like family’, but how many of them actually practice what they preach? 

How many businesses actually take the time to get to know their customers beyond superficial marketing tactics? How many view their business through the eyes of potential clients? 

Unfortunately, not many. 

Businesses spend millions of dollars trying to figure out what their customers want and still have a hard time answering that question. In reality, it’s easy to find out what potential clients want without having to dedicate massive resources. 

Before focusing on custom tradeshow booth ideas, you need to know what your customers want. Here’s how you can find out more about your customers to better serve their needs. 

Ask Them!

There are many companies that spend thousands of dollars on trying to figure out what their customers want, but for some reason they never get around to asking them. 

If you want to know how potential clients or customers perceive you, the best way to find out is to ask for feedback. You can do this in several ways. 

First, you could take advantage of your mailing list to get feedback. Send out a message to everyone with two links: one for existing customers and one for potential clients. 

For your current customers, ask them about their experience with your company. What are you doing well and what could you do better? What convinced your existing clients to do business with you? How well are you meeting their needs, and what advice would they have for you in the future?

For potential clients, you want to know what’s holding them back. What could you do to build trust with them? What interested them enough in your services to sign up for your mailing list, and what holds them back from committing? Asks questions geared towards these two ideas to see what you’re doing well and where you have room for improvement. 

The main thing when you ask these questions is to emphasize two things. First, make sure that respondents know that their responses are anonymous. Next, make sure that the participants know that you aren’t trying to pressure them into a decision, but that you’re only trying to gather information to help your business. 

Become a Customer Yourself

If you really want to know how to improve your customer’s experience and discover where you can improve, become a customer. 

First, create a fake account and sign up for your own products and services. See what the sign up process is like. Are you making it easy for your customers to get started? Are you giving them enough information to make an informed decision? 

Next, see how the delivery of the service takes place. Make sure that your team reaches out to new clients to answer any questions they have. Make sure that the customer gets what they expected. 

You’ll want to create a few accounts to make sure that what you experience isn’t a one-time thing. You’ll also want to examine multiple products, as often you have different people in charge of these services. Make sure every department works together to give your customers a positive experience. 

If you find it hard to do this with an open mind, get an outsider to do this. Have a friend or family member sign up for the services and see what they say. You can also workshop this step and have several people so that you can compare notes on what works and what doesn’t. 

Never assume that your processes work. Always look for ways to improve. You should always remember that your competitors work to improve upon what you do, meaning that you should also do the same. In business, stagnation kills. 

Use Customer Analytics to Inform Decisions

Using tools like Google Analytics can help you determine what your customers like and don’t like about your website and company. 

Anytime customers visit your site, you can evaluate what pages they visit, stay on the longest, and leave to see what they view as valuable. Since the goal of a business is to provide value to their customers, you can use this information to see what you should give your customers more of and what to scale back on. 

This also helps you understand the customer journey. What pages on your website do they visit before they sign up? If they get to the checkout phase, look at something, and then leave without converting, what is it that scares them away? 

For example, let’s say you offer the customer a trial period. When it comes time to check out, if they go to your pricing page to see what they’ll pay after the trial period and click away, you may need to consider your prices. 

Are prices too high, or do they not think that they’re getting enough value for what they’ll pay? This information helps you make informed and data-driven decisions later on. 

This information helps you improve both your website and your booth design. Trade show attendees are like online shoppers. They have several choices and it’s your job to convince them to choose you. Figuring out what works online will help you at shows and conventions. 

Check out Online Forums 

One of the best ways to find out what your customers need is to check out online forums. Sites like Quora and Reddit are the best places to start because of the number of users. 

On these sites, people can ask questions about anything and get answers. Here, you can find out what people that use or need your service are looking for and what they think about different companies. 

First, find out what people want to know about your industry. See what they’re asking, find out what they think, and figure out what they like and don’t like about your competitors. 

You should also try to find patterns in the questions that posters ask. When setting up your custom tradeshow booth design, think of ways to answer these questions. Use these questions to inform your marketing strategy and guide customers through the buyer’s journey, and you’ll be well on your way to attracting new clients. 

Questions To Ask Yourself Before A Tradeshow

When thinking about your credit tradeshow booth, there are certain questions you should ask yourself based on the information you’ve gathered.

You should always base your design around your customers. One of the primary reasons that places like Walmart and Target are successful is because of their dedication to their customer’s needs. They design their stores and displays based on their customer’s needs instead of their own. 

You should take the same approach to your custom tradeshow booth. Let’s look at some questions you need to ask before designing custom booths. 

What Are the Pain Points for Potential Customers?

Successful businesses solve problems for their customers. What that problem is depends on the industry. 

Before a tradeshow, ask yourself what problems you solve for your customer. Do you make it easy for them to design a website? Does your business give them a cheaper alternative to hiring an in-house IT team?

Once you figure out the primary problem that your business solves, make it the main focus of your display.

A lot of businesses go for a general approach so that they can attract the most people, but it’s best to focus on the quality of leads over the quantity. Getting 100 visitors to your booth is irrelevant if you aren’t able to convert them. Focus on getting people to your booth who need your service and that are looking to buy. 

What Separates My Company From My Competitors? 

One of the most important things you can do when it comes to attracting quality leads is to lean in to what sets you apart. What makes your business different from your competitors? 

Think of the things that you offer that others don’t and what you do differently. Every company has something that sets them apart, whether it’s the way they perform a service or an innovative product that no one else has. 

When dealing with potential leads in a tradeshow setting, lead with what makes you different. This is what provides value to your customers. 

How Can I Reach Customers in Different Stages of the Sales Funnel? 

There are several types of customers that attend tradeshows. Some are there looking for information to take back to their buyers while others have the authority to buy now. Of those ready to buy now, some are more confident than others. 

How can you reach each of these types? 

First, don’t be afraid to ask your display’s visitors where they are in the funnel. They’ll let you know if they’re ready to buy now or looking for information. You should have information prepared for all types. If they’re collecting information, give it to them. Have flyers or brochures ready to give out to different types of visitors. You should also have business cards ready to hand out. 

Being prepared will show potential clients that you’ve thought of them in advance. 

Designing a Custom Tradeshow Booth That Brings in Leads

Now that we’ve discussed how to learn about potential customers and some of the things you should consider before setting up a tradeshow, it’s time to put that information together for your booth design. 

The main thing to remember is that you want to focus on your customer. You can’t appeal to everyone, but you can target your message towards those that will benefit from the service you provide. When developing your booth, focus on what your customer wants and what your goals are.

The Customer’s Story 

One of the most effective ways to attract customers is to take them through the customer’s journey. The goal is to have them picture themselves as your client so that they understand the value you offer. 

There are a few ways to do this. First, you can tell the story of your business by building a timeline of your accomplishments. 

Take them through the idea and founding of your business. Talk about your first customer, your first store or website, and your first convention. Show them the highlights of your business, and then end it with the day they sign up. Putting your booth’s visitors into your story will show them how much you value your customers.

You can also show them that you understand your customers by telling them the story of your target audience. Tell the story of the customer; what they do on an average day, how they attempt to solve their pain points, and then end with your business and how it makes their life easier. 

These types of custom tradeshow booths create memorable experiences by personalizing the experience. It allows visitors to visualize themselves as a part of your company’s history and culture.    

Custom Flooring

At tradeshows, a lot of businesses will set up their booth with all the bells and whistles: elaborate displays with ‘50 LCD TVs, money displays people can stand in and grab cash, expensive grab bags, and more. These things are great at attracting a large number of people, but are they attracting clients? 

Furthermore, these types of custom booths almost always ignore a large part of their space: the floor. 

You can do a lot with the floor area around your custom tradeshow booth that will help attract clients. The best part is that using this space isn’t as expensive as some of the other tricks you’ll see competitors use. 

There are a few things you can do. First, create a path with directionals for your display. When you’re telling a story using your booth, use the floor to take people through your sales funnel. You can also use this to encourage social distancing for safety.  

Tell your visitors which way to go using directions on the floor so that you can lead them through your process. Have them start at the information gathering stage through the process of becoming a customer. Use each section of your display to give them the relevant information they need to know about your business. 

Brand The Floor Around Your Custom Tradeshow Booth

You should also have your logo on the floor around your booth. Take every opportunity you can to market your business. You can even use phrases such as ‘now approaching x’ or ‘you’re about to pass up an opportunity to x’ depending on what your business does. 

This helps solidify your message to attendees looking for specific services. You’re telling them what you have to offer without having to stop every person that walks by, which is impossible to do at larger conventions. 

If allowed, you can use the flooring to change the texture of the floor, attracting attention as well. Vinyl flooring will make your area stand out, especially if it’s branded. Remember, you’re paying for the entire space at the convention/tradeshow. If you don’t use all the space, you’re throwing away money!

Integrate Social Media into Your Display 

It seems like everyone has Twitter, Facebook, Tik Tok, or some other form of social media. In fact, 68% of people in the U.S. have a Facebook account, 24% have Twitter, and Tik Tok has over a billion users worldwide. Why not use it to your advantage? 

Create a space at your display that allows people to connect through social media. Generate buzz online with attendees by allowing people to tweet, post, and dance their way onto other people’s timelines at your display. 

Set up an area with different backgrounds (branded of course) where people can create a video for social media. Encourage them to use a branded hashtag that has to do with the convention so that other attendees can find the video. 

You can also encourage visitors to use your social media station to tell others about your business once they sign up for services. Use your station as the last stop in your ‘story’ built display. 

If you take them through the sales funnel, you can have them sign up for your services at the end and then ‘tell a friend’ online using language like ‘I just saved 65% on video marketing costs using x at #VidfestExpo2021!” This allows other attendees to see your business online and creates a buzz around your booth. 

Have Some Fun!

Knowing your customer will help you figure out what will attract them to your booth. 

While a lot of businesses focus on presenting a serious button down approach to conventions and trade shows, you shouldn’t be afraid to have a good time. Companies that take themselves to seriously come off as stodgy and outdated, pushing millennials away from their business.

Set up entertaining displays that allow people to take a break from the chaos and have some fun. If you’re in the technology or engineering niche for example, set up video game stations for your visitors. 

You can have a mario kart tournament where the winner receives something for free. You can also target the type of game you have for your audience. Engineering firms can have games like ‘bridge simulator’. Digital marketing firms can have “PC builder” games on display. There’s a game for almost every niche!

Games at your booth will both attract people and allow you to sell your product in a fun way. It cements your company as the ones who understands their customers and helps clients remember your business. 

Think about it: as an attendee, would you rather deal with someone who spends 20 minutes hard pitching you, or would you rather deal with someone who spends 20 minutes playing Madden with you, taking the time to get to know you, and then 10 minutes talking about their business? 

Your booth should focus on building connections first and selling second. Having fun will help you get to know your clients and create a lasting impression on them. 

Go Bold To Catch Attendees Attention 

Have you ever seen billboards on the side of the road that feature cute animals and a bold message telling you to advertise there? Of course you have, because they’re designed with the simple idea of going bold. 

Those signs are more effective than you may think. Think about billboards for a second and a few will pop into your mind: the Chik’ Fil’ A cows, the Lamar advertisements (You could advertise here!), or the Miss Me Yet billboards of 2008 featuring George W. Bush. 

These billboards tell a simple story in a bold way. More importantly, they make the viewer curious because of bold visuals. 

You can apply the same ideas to your tradeshow design. Use signs to draw people to your booth. Depending on what kind of service you provide, you can create signs that draw attention to your brand. 

First, think about the problem that your business solves. What is the primary pain point that your customers face? You’ll want to make a sign that draws attention to that. 

If you’re an IT firm, create a sign with a destroyed computer and (fake) wires hanging down. Have a simple message accompany it, such as “Yeah, we can fix this” or “When turning it on and off again doesn’t work” followed by your logo. Signs like these catch the attention of people looking for a particular service. 

Remember, it’s all about connecting with your audience and using up as much space as possible to get your message across. Creative signage grabs attention and uses up the space you paid for. 

Rockway Exhibits Is Here To Help

If you’re looking to improve the ROI you see from your advertising budget, Rockway is here to help. We help businesses create bold and ambitious visions that attract new leads that convert to clients. 

When we say “Be Bold”, we mean it. We take a customer centric approach to everything that we do and use innovative approaches to give your booth a competitive edge over your competition. If you’re ready to create a custom tradeshow booth that will stand out during your next convention, get in touch with us today! 

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