10 ways to make the most of exhibiting at the Mum’s Enterprise Roadshow

Exhibiting at an event is often an important investment for a small business. So how can you maximise your ROI? Here are 10 ways to make the most of exhibiting.

Since we launched Talented Ladies club we’ve invested in exhibiting at a number of events (including the Mums Enterprise Roadshow) – and it’s always been worthwhile.

Exhibiting at events helps to raise your brand profile, gets you in front of your ideal audience (and hopefully begin a mutually beneficial relationship with them), and enables you to meet and connect with other businesses working in your sector.

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But, if you want to really get the most from exhibiting at an event you can’t just turn up on the day and hope for the best. You need a carefully planned strategy to ensure you don’t miss a single opportunity to wring every last penny in value from your investment.

10 ways to make the most of exhibiting at the Mum’s Enterprise Roadshow

Mum’s Enterprise Roadshow Manchester is just around the corner, so we caught up with Lindsey Fish, Founder and CEO of the event, and asked her to share some key advice and insight around how to maximise your presence around events and make the very most of your time as an exhibitor there. Here are her top 10 tips.

1) Make sure you plan ahead and book your space in time

Exhibiting at events can seem a little daunting, as there is so much to organise to ensure everything runs smoothly. But the sooner you book your stand or pitch the longer you will have to pay but also the longer you will be listed as taking part meaning you get maximum exposure from being a part of it.

Of course don’t worry if the event you really want to go to is a month away, contact the organiser and see if you can get in, it is always worth a try. An organiser would prefer the show to be full so will always try to get you in.

2) Gather as much information as possible so you know what to expect

Market research is key when it comes to planning an event calendar for your brand. Take some time to look at all of the events out there and be sure to pick the ones which are tailored towards helping you achieve your specific business objectives.

Start searching for events in your local area, any national events as well as those which attract a specific audience which are your current customers or perhaps even a new market and target audience you haven’t delved into yet.

Events are a great way to source new leads, customers and of course brand awareness. No matter what you sell, provide or do there will certainly be an event perfect for you.

3) Think about your visual impact and branding

Work out how you are going to bring your brand to life at the events you are attending. Consider the space you’ve got at each and work to create a brand presence that is visually impactful and draws people in to engage with you.

This may sound expensive but it needn’t be. The thing with events is that it’s all really about talking to people. So long as you have your company name and a one liner about what you do easily visible and have some literature to give away with any show specials, information and your contact details on and ideally business cards, you are pretty much set.

The most important thing is simple, clear and bright branding so passers by can easily see who you are and how you can help them.

4) Define your event objectives

I always find it’s very helpful to set some business objectives around each event – whether it is data capture, new business leads or simply enhancing general awareness around your brand, its always handy to jot them down as a point of reference.

It may be difficult but try to put a number against these objectives so afterwards and after 6 months or so you can see if you have managed to hit those targets.

5) Know your attendee demographic and tailor your communications to them

People attending events pick up all sorts of ‘stuff’ the hard part is making sure yours stands out. Understanding the audience you are going to be in contact with is really important, it sounds obvious but I guarantee people re-use the same literature from one event to another even though the audience may be different.

Understand the challenges, needs and wants of this audience, how can you help be a solution to their problem? Then make sure to add in an un-missable call to action whether it be a free discovery call or useful download. If you are a true solution and you have peaked their interest then your ‘freebie’ will be much wanted.

6) Make the most of all of the exposure that the event offers

Events are amazing platforms for marketing as they bring so many people together with a common shared interest. Take time to speak with the organiser to find out about all of the additional opportunities there are for increased exposure.

This could be social media, newsletters, offers, competitions and giveaways. How else can you be seen and heard pre, during and post show.

7) Promote the fact that you will be exhibiting at the event

Don’t just rely on the guaranteed audience of an event. Promoting your attendance at an event can also open up opportunities for potential customers to sign up to an event because they know you will be there.

Add it as an event on your company Facebook page, talk about it in your newsletters and add a note about it in your email signature and don’t forget to be pro-active on social media and tag the organisers so they can re-tweet etc too.

8) Harness the power of social media

Identify the hash tags for the events that you are attending and use them on the run up to the event. This will help you to get a head start in terms of networking with the people and other exhibitors who will be attending. And if there is a group or community, join in.

9) Post Event

The event doesn’t end when you pack up and go home. Take time to follow up with any leads or contacts. Add people to your social media profiles and send them all a note to follow up with that un-missable offer. That way you will be able to keep these relationships alive and convert them into business.

Often with events leads can be slow burners but just like any business it takes time, so be consistent, communicate useful and relevant communications and when you are needed you will be first in mind to call.

10) And perhaps the most important – enjoy it!

People don’t just buy into a brand, they buy into the people behind it so just be yourself and enjoy every minute of the events you attend and the opportunities that they open up to you and your business. Also a top tip is to take a bottle of water and some lip balm, as you will need it after a full days talking and smiling.

Mum’s Enterprise Roadshow is a child-friendly flexible work and business show, founded and organised by mums is aimed at helping attendees get into the right frame of mind for change and is a must attend for those looking to retrain, find flexible work, start or grow a business.  

The first event of 2018 will take place on 20th June in Manchester Event City and a two day exhibition on 28th & 29th September in it’s new London home, Olympia. This year there is an anticipated audience of over 10,500 across these two exhibitions.

No matter what your scenario or circumstance, age, gender or if you are a mum or not, if retraining, finding flexible work, starting or growing a business is of interest to you then you are welcome to attend totally free, we are going to the moon and taking thousands with us #shootforthemoon.

Photo by Brittany Gaiser