CTIA Super Mobility 2016 is right around the corner, and for many companies in the mobile, wireless, telecom, IT and IoT industries, it’s one of the top trade shows of the year. While the days are ticking away, there is still time to make an impression and gain awareness for your company, regardless of whether you’re exhibiting, speaking or just attending.
You’re likely well into your final checklists for the show, but even if you just made the decision to attend today, there are 10 things you can still do to make a splash before and at the show:
- Review and revamp your demos and videos. If you have a booth, consider using a continuously running video—2 minutes or less – that shows people the a-ha moment of why they should be talking to you. If your booth staffers are busy with other potential customers, the video serves as a temporary draw to come into your booth to learn more. This works in booths of all sizes, even a 10x10. If you’re just attending, but doing some media and analyst interviews or customer meetings, make sure you have a video or presentation they can refer to during and after the show. (It helps to have a mobile device such as an IPad to facilitate sharing on demand!) Multimedia content sticks in people’s memory more so than spoken words, and is generally simple to create.
- Start using the #CTIA and #SuperMobility hashtags today on Twitter to let people know not only what you’re doing at the show, but that you’re AT the show in the first place. While most companies use these hashtags at the show, many fail to use them before the show and miss out on an opportunity to broaden the audience for their messages on social media. By starting early, you’re catching people while they are still plotting out their calendars. Do this 3x a day with different messages between now and the show opening. Write them all in advance and pre-schedule, where possible.
- Use the registered media and analyst list to help you book appointments with Influencers at the show. Even if you don’t have news, trade shows are a great time to catch up face to face with the analysts that cover the industry. While some are looking for news to relay to their newsletter and subscription audiences, others are there working on reports, learning about any newcomers that they should be following, and in general, catching up with vendor and service provider strategies for the market segments they cover.
- Use the media and analyst list as a basis to follow these Influencers (and their firms) on Twitter and LinkedIn. Begin to retweet their news and posts as part of your social media strategy going forward. Even if you are not quite ready for the interview stage, getting name recognition early means they will be aware of your company when you DO ask for an interview. Note: Don’t try to DM or reach out on LinkedIn unless you’ve already had a face-to-face or phone briefing. No one likes a stalker.
- Invite prospects to meet with you at the show. Gather your lists, create a simple CTIA-specific page on your website, prep an HTML invitation and start sending. Don’t be afraid to pick up the phone! Believe it or not, “old school” approaches still work – just make sure you personalize them to the prospect you are calling. More than 75% of attendees pre-plan their meetings on the show floor, and you want to be on the calendars of your top prospects.
- Review your giveaway strategy. If you have giveaways at your booth, consider offering a better “thank you” gift to customers that book appointments in advance—and let them know it. Make sure to repeat the offer on your social media channels.
- Make and confirm dinner reservations for your customer meetings and your staff. CTIA is a dawn to midnight kind of show, and everyone needs a good meal to prepare for the next day. Many Vegas hotspots on the strip book quickly, so try something off-strip and unique for your customer and team dinners.
- Live tweet news from the event…not just your company’s, but all of the things you find interesting. The goal is to engage, not sell. By acting as a show reporter, you just may find some new partners or customers. As with sharing your own news, use the show hashtags.
- If your booth is on the outskirts of the trade show floor, do a little extra to get people there. Reach out to partners immediately to discuss how they can help send appropriate visitors your way. Acknowledge your location by creating an outpost with “provisions” such as water, energy bars, a free compass app and other small giveaways that poke fun at your location while creating energy and interest.
- If you have a big announcement to make, consider dropping your press release prior to the show, to stimulate advance interest in your brand. When posting out the release link on social media, make sure to use the show hashtags in addition to your usual industry hashtags. If reporters or analysts show interest in your social posts, use this as an opportunity to suggest a meeting at the show. If a journalist of interest follows you as a result of a post, by all means, follow them back, and reach out with a private message to try and schedule some time to get together in person.
Be creative and diligent in your efforts these last two weeks before the show, and you’ll be sure to see results. One final note: You’re after quality, not quantity, so make sure all of your efforts map back to your business goals. And now, on with the show!
Interested in learning more about how we can help you rev up your trade show strategy and other parts of your marketing communications programs? Meet with Calysto at CTIA! Contact Marissa Evans at firstname.lastname@example.org.