Creating marketing materials and give-aways for an upcoming exhibition is important and is something that here at Colour Graphics we create for customers all the time.

But, are you getting the most from your products? Are they are effective as you think they are? What material do you need to take to an exhibition anyway?

Even those businesses who are regulars at exhibitions and conferences, it can all seem a little bit of a chaotic whirl before the event. Likewise, just because the postcards worked at a similar conference three years ago, doesn’t mean that they will work at an exhibition now.

There are many aspects of marketing materials at exhibitions that we think of unnoticed or are overlooked hence, we have created an exhibition checklist to help you be organised, with super-effective marketing material…

  1. Get organised 

There is a lot to organise when it comes to exhibiting at shows and events, not least of all the arrangements for when you are at the venue. Communication between team members, so that they are all aware of the do’s and don’ts is important and one way of doing this is keeping all the necessary paperwork, information, press releases and anything else of consequence in a file or ring binder. We also think it is helpful to keep a copy of all the marketing you have on the stand too, for future reference.

  1. Practice makes perfect

Not every team member will be comfortable with working exhibitions, seeing them as a necessary evil rather than something enjoyable or fun. When this is the case, team members can often find it hard to make contact, starting a conversation, steering people towards a deal or for them to leave contact details.

For too long, people have seen this as an art rather than a skill that can be learnt! Trying out various pitches, having ‘lead in’ conversation openers is one way to make people feel more comfortable approaching people. This is all part of deciding who is looking to buy or is genuinely interested, as opposed to those who are passing the time.

  1. Set up time

Another common issue is that people do not leave enough time to set up their stand or space. Simply throwing everything together to discover part way in to the conference that the looped presentation or film does not work is not an auspicious start to your time there.

Allow yourself enough time to set up, and try any digital media out before the event starts; this way, last minute panics can be avoided.

  1. Order the accessories

Accessories can often be overlooked or, if you are a newbie business to the exhibition circuit, you may not be aware, for example, that lighting within your space is not provided unless you pre-order it.

These accessories, from lights to rental furniture, can really make your space, revolutionising it from amateur to a professional set up.

  1. Signage & Graphics

Marketing material is all well and good but, if it is not immediately obvious who you are, or what you do, you are instantly on the back foot.

Develop a clear message and call to actions, using them across a range of printed media; roller banners, flags, posters are just a few examples of re-useable and cost-effective solutions to making your exhibition space looking inviting, and informative.

  1. Print well in advance

Don’t leave creating this kind of printed media until the last minute. When things are rushed, the reviewing and proofreading of material can become sloppy. As a result, glaring and obvious mistakes can be missed.

There is nothing worse than turning up at an exhibition, prepared to flood your market with flyers only to find the email address is wrong, the phone number is one digit short and there is a glaring error in the headline.

  1. Press kits and online social presence

The whole point of spending time, energy and money on exhibitions is to place your business firmly in the spotlight. All too often, people leave it at that, assuming that their presence will be advertising and marketing enough.

Press releases are not too traditional to be old hat – why not let your local press know you are exhibiting at a national conference, for example? – and make sure you have a concerted social media campaign too. Also make sure you use an exhibition checklist like the one above to make sure you have everything sorted prior to the event.

Exhibitions can be worth their weight in gold; imagine sitting down on Monday with a burgeoning order book and more leads to follow…