5 Reasons Going Digital Can Help You Be More Green at Your Next Show

April 24, 2014

Trace Cohen

Trace Cohen is the Co-founder of Launch.it, the only Event News Management Platform for expos, tradeshows and events to increase their social engagement, buzz and revenue with their exhibitor and show news by creating a Digital Media Center for them.

In the spirit of Earth Day, I wanted to touch upon how digital/social media can be an effective way to lower your shows carbon footprint. Printed materials have always been the hallmark of doing business when face-to-face at a show, but more times than not, companies print more than is needed. The result, it will be thrown out at the end of the day. The way to remedy this waste of paper would be to have your company starts to convert some of your physical promotions into digital ones. This change would not only allow you to increase your opportunities to be found, but also help the environment in the process.

Below are some reasons and examples why going digital is good for the environment, your business and your show.

1. Less Materials Made - Less Thrown Away

Most booths at a show generally have some type of handout to give attendees and media when they stop by. They can be news releases, brochures, sell/spec sheets or just a flyer, all of which are helpful, but will eventually find their way to the nearest waste basket. By publishing some of this information online, either by emailing a link out to your customers before the show starts or you can take down information of customers/attendees stopping by your booth and followup with them after the show.

2. Digital is quicker to produce and is infinite and evergreen

Creating digital and social media is generally a quicker process than designing print materials. One of the hardest things to do for a show is estimating how many of flyers/handouts you need so that you don’t run out. Result, you generally end up with extra inventory, which is also a company expense. With digital content, your scale is infinite because creating it once is enough for everyone to be able to share and socialize it with as many people as you want. Also, if you make a mistake, you can easily update it.

3. Print, Pack, Ship — Unpack, Pack, Ship

We all know this scenario. There are many printed materials that you can now make digital. While you may feel this will decrease your footprint, just think of the financial savings, and “no back pain”, by having less to ship and handout.

4. Tracking your marketing materials

You can add a link or QR code on your printed materials which will allow you to know when someone used it, and when they did that specific action. However, if your materials are digital, you can know how they got to your site, how long they were there, what they clicked on, and what other pages they visited. When your information is digital, you can get a lot more information about a customer/attendee, while allowing them to also get more information about your company.

5. Less to carry for the attendees and media

We are seeing a growing trend with show organizers who want to be able to send everyone attending the show more information before it starts. Some of our show partners have moved away from printed show directories and press kits in favor of mobile apps and using an online newsroom as they are easier to produce, create less waste, provide a better experience and can cost less.

6. BONUS! – It will always be online, so it can be found, discovered and shared

It will always be online and can be easily found, discovered and shared! Most printed materials are great resources of information outside of shows, but unless someone stops by your booth, they can’t get the information. If you publish your news and info online, anyone can find it before, during and even after the show. It is Evergreen!

At the end of the day, you need to do what is best for your show and/or company. Today, most people are expecting some of your information to be online in some capacity whether it’s your website or through a social network. Between Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn and many more, there are a lot of free tools you can use out there that will help your marketing initiatives and outreach.

Please just make sure to compliment your physical presence with a digital one, and think twice before hitting that print button.

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