Exhibiting with confidence

We’ve been busy expanding and developing our existing service offerings here at Black Iris and we thought it was about time we told you all about our exhibition training services.

Exhibitions are a fantastic marketing tool for companies and they serve a great purpose for seeking out new business and strengthening existing relationships. In a bid to stand out against the rest, companies can spend hundreds – and often thousands – of pounds on their exhibition stands. It’s crucial to stand out against competitors, but what is often overlooked is the ability of staff working on the stand to do just that. After all, once the stand has captured passing visitors’ attention, the work is down to company representatives to sell the business and generate leads.

Working in collaboration with Zebra, we provide informal, half-day presentation and workshop-based training sessions to companies and staff responsible for exhibiting at trade exhibitions. We share our expert knowledge of event etiquette, pre- and post-event publicity, generating leads and managing leads post-event. Our aim is to help companies maximise the full business potential and value that exhibitions offer, by training the team members and staff managing the stand, so that revenue invested will be excellent value for money and exhibitors can exhibit with confidence!

So get in touch, let us know your requirements, and we’ll email everything you need to know about our training sessions.

Busy exhibition stand
Busy exhibition stand
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When to hire an exhibition stand?

A rule of thumb says that if you are going to use a particular exhibition stand more than three or four times it pays to buy it. If a majority of your shows are on the back of conferences in hotels, universities and venues other than exhibition halls and you already have graphic displays that you are happy using at those shows but you wish to make an impact at that one-yearly show in a bigger venue and with bigger competitors then it pays to hire a bigger stand just for that show.

If you want to make an impact and stand out only once a year at an important event then hire a stand. Let’s face it – it is likely that in a year’s time you will want a different stand anyway. So why invest a large sum into something that you might not like anymore the year after.

When you hire a stand you still receive our full service of installation and de-rig, transporting of your equipment and marketing collateral, liasing with the organisers, coordinating with graphic designers, printers and AV hire companies. You don’t have to worry about storage of the stand or whether the design will stand the test of times. Because next year you can do exactly the same but with a new look.

You may save the graphics for the next year but in all honesty, these are usually used for one event only. So don’t get sold into the “you can reuse the graphics next year” scenario because I am willing to bet that chances of this happening are very slim indeed. Therefore always budget for a new set of graphics for each show. After all, your business will have grown from the last year and chances are, so will your message to the visitors.

Hire an exhibition stand
A modular exhibition stand to hire

Work it out backwards

How do you ensure the best success at your next exhibition? Start by working it out backwards.

Establish the whole reason why you are going to exhibit at this particular show. Is it to gain new leads, brand awareness, market research? Once you have established the reason you can work on how to achieve your targets. So you know the date of the show. Work your plan backwards – look at the deadlines organisers will have imposed on the exhibitors to ensure a smooth running of the show. But more importantly, work out your marketing plan for this particular show. Check the deadline for submitting PR articles to the organisers and adjust your marketing communication to reflect the main reason for this exhibition. Specify target audience and establish deadlines to reach them and ensure as many as possible visit your stand because you have invited them.

Looking at all of the activities you would like to do/plan to do should give you a good time framework to which you can work towards to achieve all of your goals. The more you are prepared the more activities will get done on time and more visitors will come to your stand to see what you have to offer.

Don’t forget to include the time to write/prepare post-event communications. You will not have the luxury of time once the show finishes – the quicker you contact your leads the better the return as they are more likely to remember you and stay engaged with you. So any post-event emails, catalogue posting etc should be pre-written and prepared in advance to save time after the event.

Prepare for exhibition

Q&A sessions

It is frustrating to hear companies say that they have tried exhibiting once, it was an expensive lesson in wasting money and they will never do it again.

Exhibitions are a fantastic marketing platform when done correctly. Visitors are receptive to your offer, that’s why they have come to an exhibition. To see what companies have to offer. It is the perfect opportunity for them to research the market for new products/services and compare competitors.

Why waste an opportunity like that? We would like to help and untangle the scary world of exhibiting manuals, stand contractor jargon and deadlines and make it less of a rocket science and a more pleasurable experience for exhibitors.

Marketing your company at an exhibition is an investment and it is important to get a good return on your investment to help business grow. It’s what good marketing should be doing and exhibiting is just one part of it.

So let’s get it right, let’s help you achieve a higher return on your investment with some straight forward advice. For free. Go for it – ask a question.

Email your questions to Q&A and you will get an answer by return and the most commonly asked and the best questions will be posted on our blog and included in the newsletters.

It doesn’t matter if your stand is big or small, your budget huge or tiny or whether your stand is installed by another company, ourselves or you are using pop up graphic display. What matters is getting it right and if we can, we want to help.

Send your questions to Q&A@blackiris-exhibitions.co.uk