Weekly Insights: Trade Shows are One Piece of the Marketing Pie

Graphic: Digital Juice
Graphic: Digital Juice

Earlier this week, I gave a presentation about all the marketing strategies available to promote your business. And while I always emphasize the exhibiting piece because that’s my area of expertise, I definitely don’t separate it from the rest of the pie.

All of the pieces need to work together to present a consistent marketing message and to support each other. For example, exhibiting at a trade show can and should work in tandem with your social media marketing, publicity/media relations, content marketing, and more. In fact, your success is enhanced when you do it this way.

But often the people within a company who are responsible for the trade show program aren’t the same ones who lead the overall marketing campaigns, so there’s a lack of consistency … or worse yet, a contradiction of messages. Sometimes there’s even an “us vs. them” mentality, and that’s got to stop if you want to maximize your exhibiting investment.

Exhibit managers can start by having a conversation with others who play a role in the overall marketing campaigns. Find out what they’re working on and how the exhibit can reinforce those messages. Don’t plan in a vacuum!

And if you’re a small business that has no trouble communicating between departments (you may even BE all the departments), you still don’t want to look at trade show exhibiting as some kind of separate marketing strategy. The more you interweave it with all your other day-to-day marketing (both before and after the show), the more effective it will be.

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