(EDITOR’S NOTE: Speaking of goals, this post is the first in my 31-day Ultimate Blog Challenge. Watch for many more written, audio … and even some video posts coming during the month of January. – Marlys)
This time of year — whether you admit it or not — you’ve likely been reflecting back on 2011 and looking ahead to 2012.
Note I didn’t use the “R” word … after all, statistics show that the vast majority of New Year’s resolutions are broken within days. Instead, here’s a system for establishing solid goals for your trade show program in the coming year.
First, it’s important that you set specific, realistic goals. That may be why most resolutions fail … they’re too unrealistic. There’s a delicate balance between making it challenging and feeling like it’s achievable.
It’s also important to write goals down to solidify them in your brain. Use present tense, rather than saying “we will” or “I’m going to …” because you want to paint a picture of having already accomplished the goal.
So here’s a quick & simple formula for setting your 2012 goals:
- Write down 10 things you accomplished in your trade show marketing strategy in 2011.These can be anything from gathering x-number of leads to revamping your booth display. (If you need help remembering, look back at your calendar or event files.)
- Decide on 3 areas to focus on in the new year. Perhaps you want to develop a better lead management system, enhance your pre-show promotions, or get the attention of more media in your industry at shows.
- Now that you have your focus areas, break each down into 3-5 steps you can implement.For example, if you want a better lead management system, your steps might be to design a lead card, create a way to track the leads through your CRM system, and establish a method for assigning lead management tasks to your team.
Now that you have a plan, the most essential step is to take action. Hold yourself and your team accountable for implementing these goals. Yes it takes work, but with a solid plan, you’ll see your 2012 trade show goals coming to fruition before you know it!
So what are your goals for 2012? Please share them by replying to this tip, or post them on the ImageSpecialist page on Facebook. And if you need some help either finding focus or implementing strategies, feel free to contact me.
Wishing you a wonderfully successful 2012!
© 2011 Marlys K. Arnold (Reprinted from the December 2011 TradeShowTips Online. To receive tips like this in your inbox every month, please take a moment to fill out this request.)
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About the Author:
With experiences as both an exhibitor and a show organizer, Marlys Arnold has a unique perspective on trade show exhibiting. She travels the country consulting and training both exhibitors and show managers, and is the author of Build a Better Trade Show Image (2002), host of the Trade Show Insights podcast and creator of the ExhibitorEd training kit. She can be reached at www.imagespecialist.com.
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With experiences as both an exhibitor and a show organizer, Marlys Arnold has a unique perspective on trade show exhibiting. As an exhibit marketing strategist, she travels the country consulting and training on how to create experiential exhibits that produce significantly higher numbers of qualified leads. She’s led workshops for events ranging from local consumer expos to some of the largest trade shows in the U.S. She hosts the Trade Show Insights
blog/podcast, and is the author of Build a Better Trade Show Image
, the Exhibitor Education Manifesto
, and the ExhibitorEd Success System
. She’s also the founder of the Exhibit Marketers Café
, an online education community. To request an “Extra Shot of Exhibit Success” go to www.ExhibitMarketersCafe.com