Are Trade Shows Worth it? How to Decide
Deciding whether to attend a trade show can problematic. On the one hand, they are often quite expensive trade show banner cost money. Simply traveling to and from the show costs money. On the other hand, not attending a show—the right show— can cost your company much more money in the long run. How do you decide which ones are worthwhile and which ones aren’t? Here are a few suggestions.
Do Your Research
We all know trade shows can be excellent vehicles for your growing your business, the trick is in finding the right ones to attend. It’s always a good idea to ask colleagues in the field which shows they plan to attend. Any trade associations you belong to can also yield important clues as to which shows are considered worthwhile in the industry. Keep and eye on the competition, too. Which shows are they attending, and why? Just because they are attending a show doesn’t mean it is a good fit for your company, but you need to be aware of their moves. Understanding the competition is never a bad plan. Also, check the attendees list for potential shows and use that information to inform your decision about attending. Are the people or companies coming people you want to meet? Sometimes gathering information (or intelligence, to get a little more industrial spy-like) on competitors and what they are up to can be a good reason to attend a show.
Have a Plan for the Show
Think about what you pan to achieve by going to the show, and work that into a theoretical return on investment (ROI) analysis. If you decide to attend, have a plan. Don’t stay glued to your booth. If at all possible, bring some people with you to work it. Sure, you want to be seen there, but you also need to walk around. Observing the competition and networking at the venue is one of the greatest benefits to any trade show, and one often overlooked by those new to the game. Don’t make that mistake. Have a plan for getting people into your booth, and yourself into others.
Get out to those shows—the ones right for your company—and grow your business. You can always find an excellent selection of trade show materials, all at great prices, simply by visiting thedisplayoutlet.com