Skills day 2008: making your stand work for you

Theresa Summerfield – Intute

Download Theresa’s presentation:
Theresa Summerfield: making your stand work for you (ppt)

At Intute we wanted to formalise our approach to events. We do subject specific as well as generic ones and we really wanted to improve for the JISC conference and now we have these guidelines which have worked for a number of conferences.

Appoint one person to have overall responsibility – before, during and after
(see presentation)

Basic calculation to work out how many leads (contacts) you can get from an event
(see presentation)

Why exhibit?
Permissive marketing
Experiential marketing
Face-to-face contact

All these people are there and they have given permission for you to market to them. Invaluable opportunity to meet your users, both existing and new. Can be creative and experiment. Try to appeal to all five senses – flowers, mints and chocolates, board and banners, might play music or have sound on a plasma screen – lots of wonderful things that can do. Be as wacky as you like – you’ll be surprised.

Give people a reason to find you:
Offer a reward or freebie
Send contacts postcard with map showing stand location and number – go through delegate list
Email existing contacts with new developments – think about what has changed in last 12 months

First impressions count:
Have training sessions with the team – sparkle!
Stand needs to look professional, friendly and inviting – could miss three people in 10 seconds

WIIFM: what’s in it for me?
Existing users: blog, printed material, registration, new projects
New users: demo site, take details (get email address), registration, leaflet

Categories of visitor:
Really interested; curious; the ‘don’t want to knows’ (you need to be assertive and proactive with these) – put smile on face and approach complete strangers

Stand etiquette:
Body language

The words we use:
Open questions
Start conversations
Have a technical person on hand for those difficult questions or if do not, then take details of questioner and get back to them by email afterwards

Wear smart dress; positive body language; smile; approach people

No refreshments on the stand (small glass of water ok) – no yawning or scratching etc

Sales technique:
Approach, engage with them in a conversation, then walk them over to the stand and sit them down, encourage them to search on the website, give them some tips, get their details and then follow it up. No point spending all that time getting target visitors and then not following up. Send those emails out the first day back in the office or make that phone call.

Visitors will be thinking:
What I hear I forget
What I see I remember
What I do I understand

1 thought on “Skills day 2008: making your stand work for you

  1. Gerard Hayes

    Excellent –as we run stands on sometimes a very occasional basis (as opposed to full time sales personnel) then Teresa’s tips are extrenely valuable. It will be interesting to see how more additional ‘business’ is generated.

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