Leveraging Social Media Engagement in Your Trade Show Display

June 16, 2017

Tim Brown

Tim Brown is a marketing associate for GES, where he enjoys helping represent brands with live event technologies.

Trade show managers are always searching for the latest marketing trends to drive their booth’s attendance. Social media participation is key for any large event, enabling trade show goers to stay more engaged with instant updates on floor activities, educational opportunities and speaker sessions. 

Every exhibitor wants to have some sort of social engagement during a show and smart trade show marketers are taking advantage of a wide range of social media strategies to broadcast their message to more people than ever before.

So, if you want to get a larger audience at your booth, leverage social media in your trade show display using these techniques.

Launch Your Social Media Campaign Early to Build Anticipation

If you want people showing up at your event booth, ensure your social media campaign starts well before the event kicks off. Get them excited about your brand by offering product sneak peaks, contest announcements and swag giveaways. Most social platforms allow you to do sponsored content that can be targeted towards people with certain job titles, industries, interests and more.

You can also go the organic route and engage industry influencers. Reach out personally and tweet directly to people who you know will be at the show or to important thought leaders, encouraging them to visit your booth. Getting the attention of show-goers before the show starts will translate into a crowded exhibit from the get-go. 

Using the Power of Photos to Capture an Audience

Experiential marketing is all the rage right now. People love to share photos of their experiences on social media, so give them an opportunity to do it. This provides opportunities for attendees to showcase your brand to their network. Try out one of these photo-centric social media strategies at your next trade show:

·      Photo Contest: Set up a photo contest where people visit your booth, take a photo or write a post using your event hashtag, and post it to their account. Once it goes up, the attendee is entered to win a prize. 

·      Photo Opportunities: Get a celebrity or other public figure to show up and provide photo opportunities for attendees. People love to share photos of themselves with influential or affluent individuals, making it a perfect way to get your message spread across their social networks. 

·      Photobooth: Everyone enjoys stopping by a photobooth and taking silly pictures with their pals, so why not set one up in your exhibit area? You’re giving users a memento that can be shared across social media, so make sure to include features like a Facebook link, Twitter handle and hashtag on the photo booth background and printed pictures. Additionally, you could include a promo code on the photo that users can use for your product, giving them a reason to follow up with your brand. 

Stay Connected to Attendees via Social

Throughout the trade show, work to identify attendees who are using the hashtag or checking in at the convention center or surrounding hotels. Reach out directly to like, comment on or share their posts. Show your brand’s human side to connect on a more personal level and invite them to swing by your booth. 

While many event-goers may feel timid around salespeople in real life, they may be more inclined to inquire about your brand if they connect with your brand online. After the event is over, continue to follow up and nurture those leads that provided social media information to see if there’s any further interest. 

Try Going Live

Video is one of the most dominant platforms on social media today. Facebook’s recent feature, “Live,” lets users host their own real-time broadcasts right on their page. You can take advantage of this at your next trade show by showcasing your exhibit, new innovations and technologies, or interview spokespeople and industry professionals. Live is a powerful tool and can be harnessed by trade show exhibitors to enhance their message across the social media giant.

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Partner Voices

Until recently, the opportunity to have a celebrity attend an event, attach themselves to a name-brand or endorse a certain product or idea was untouchable. The thought of paying a person to promote a product was seen as something only Fortune 500 companies could afford. Social media has changed all that with brands and businesses utilizing celebrity influencers to connect directly with their demographics and increase sales and profits.