With over 30 years of experience working in the trade show industry, at Best Displays & Graphics we’ve seen a lot of successes and a lot of failures.

And since putting together a trade show display is one of the most expensive form of marketing a company can invest in, your business can’t afford to make any mistakes!

Some of most common trade show mistakes we see are:

  1. Not setting business goals
  2. Attending the wrong shows
  3. Not reading the trade show manual
  4. DIY design
  5. Forgetting to bring a toolbox
  6. Not promoting upcoming trade shows
  7. Failing to train event staff

Let’s take a closer look at these common mistakes and how to avoid them at your next trade show or event.

  1. Not setting business goals

Before deciding on what shows to attend, or investing your booth display always begin your trade show planning by setting your event marketing goals. Your goals may be to educate your audience on a new product or service, increase brand awareness, or generate new business leads. Just make sure to pick a goal that supports your overarching marketing objectives.

Once you’ve set your trade show goals, let those goals help you create a winning display and determine which trade shows to attend.

  1. Attending the wrong shows

When it comes to promoting your business at trade shows, not all events are created equal. In fact, much of your trade show appearance’s successes will hinge on picking the right shows to attend. Make sure to carefully research any trade show you are considering attending.

Look for the following:

  • What other companies will be attending?
  • Who is there target audience?
  • What topics are the guest speakers or seminars covering?
  • How is the event being promoted?
  • Where is the event being promoted?

The bottom line is, don’t show up for a show unless you are confident it’s going to give you exposure to the right audience. Contact the trade show coordinator for more information on past shows, and the visitors that attended. This should give you the information you need to know whether it’s the right fit for your company.

  1. Not reading the trade show manual

This one’s a biggie! We cannot stress enough the importance of reading your trade show manual. Sure, they can be long and boring, but they are full of rules and regulations your company will be expected to abide by. Failure to adhere to these rules can land you in hot water with the exhibitor – and potentially shut your display down.

Read your trade show manual cover to cover to gain insight on essential information such as:

  • Important dates and times
  • Required liability insurance coverage
  • Exhibit structure
  • Other labour considerations
  1. DIY Design

Your Photoshop skills may be enough to design graphics for social media or email marketing campaigns, but unless you are a professional designer, you really shouldn’t rely on beginner experience for your booth design. After all, the graphics your company harnesses as part of its trade show display can make a significant impact on your audience.

At Best Displays & Graphics, our designers are among the most experienced in the industry. With years of trade show display design under their belts, they can design display graphics that assists your company in reaching your trade show goals.

  1. Forgetting to bring a toolbox

Despite your best intentions and preparations, accidents will happen. Be prepared for minor incidents by packing a tool box full of the essentials. Along with traditional tool box staples such as hammers, screw drivers and wrenches, include items such as:

  • Duct tape
  • String
  • Glue
  • Electrical cords and outlets
  1. Not promoting upcoming trade shows

Don’t solely rely on the event organizers to promote your next trade show for you. To attract the most visitors possible to your booth, the more promotion you can muster, the better. Let your customers and leads know about your upcoming events well ahead of time.

Attract more visitors to your trade show booth by:

  • Post event teasers on social media
  • Send out email campaigns
  • Update your website with all your show dates
  1. Failing to train event staff

Letting your event staff just ‘wing it’ during trade shows and events is not the right approach. The results of which are usually extremely awkward visitor interactions.

Properly training your event staff to effectively communicate your brand messaging, will not only make your company look more professional, it will also help generate to more sales. Get event teams ready months in advance so they have plenty of time to learn your products and services, and practice their techniques.

Make your next trade show appearance your best event yet. Contact Best Displays & Graphics to get started on your next booth display.