6 golden rules for a successful fair
Participate to a professional fair as an exhibitor or even as a visiter is a great way to find first clients.. (link to article 5 ways to find a client)
The All-In Factory team had to chance to participate to many professional fairs internationally (Foire de Paris, Les Jeudis, Mapic, MipTV, CES of Las Vegas, PSO of Dusseldorf,…).
This experience has allowed us to identify 6 actions you need to carry out if you want your fair to be successful.
How to optimize your participation to a professional fair?
Get equiped with relevant marketing material
Both visitors and – even worse – exhibitors (!) sometimes attend fairs without having prepared any communication material.. Many participants realise after their second day of the fair that they have not printed enough business cards. Same for flyers or commercial brochures. What impression will you make with your potential client if you cannont even leave him a business card or a leaflet beacause you have not thought of printing them? It is always better to prepare more copies of promotional material because you will always have an occasion to give them out.
Learn to pitch
The objective of a professional fair is often to meet as many potential clients in the smallest time lapse. Therefore you should be able to discribe your company activity shortly and persuasively. All-In Factory business development teams use the method 10-30-3. This method consists of preparing prior to the fair:
- 1 pitch of 10 seconds to describe your company activity in 1 or 2 sentences
- 1 pitch of 30 seconds to describe the added value of your product or services
- 1 full pitch of 3 minuites that summarizes advantages of your product or service
You can then use the 3 different pitches depending on the situation and the person who you talk to.
Set up meetings prior to the fair
The success of a campaign depends a lot on the time you dedicate to its preparation. One of the best ways to optimize time and meet as many potential clients as possible is to contact them prior to the fair. Fair organisators make often avaiable a list of participants on the fair website. This is a great chance to contact potential customers and propose them a quick meeting at the fair.
Adapt a proactive approach
Mainly if you are starting a company, you should focus on meeting as many people that could bring you business as possible. If you have a booth, you should not just sit there and wait until some potential customer approch you. It is important to attract people to your stand to tell them about your business activity. If you are coming to a fair as a visitor, you should not hesitate to participate to as many networking sessions as possible to tell about your offer to others. At the end of the day, an efficient and proactive business team will have acquired much more business cards = more potential business, then a team waiting in the corner for clients to come themselves.
Filter your prospects
All along your fair you will meet very different people. In order to optimize your fair participation it is crucial to quickly identify their profile. This will avoid you losing your precious time talking with prospects that are highly unlikely buying any of your product or service range. On of the best ways to quickly identify the profil on the person you are talking with is letting her/him intoduce herself/himself first. Depending on, if the person might be interesting for your business or not, either you can quickly move to a different person or tell you potential client more details about your offer.
Follow up with a prospective client
All the above mentioned advices and your participation to the fair are useless if you do not follow up with the prospective clients you met at the fair. If you follow the above above advices, you are likely to go back with a big pile of business cards. In order to reach maximum results you should integrate all these contacts into your databse to follow up with all prospects the following week after the end of the fair. Do not hesitate to contact them several times in order to obtain a clear response.
To conclude, professional fairs are an excellent way to meet prospective clients. If you follow the 6 golden rules of All-In Factory to have a successful fait, you will maximise your chances to find your first clients.