Top 10 Mistakes Companies Make When Attending Events
Many companies spend time and money attending events but still don’t get much out of them.
Here are the top 10 reasons why:
- They don’t bother to prepare
Preparation is essential before going to an event, but many businesses don’t bother. After they have booked a stand, organised promotional material and picked the right team, they stop.
But there is more you can do to help your business succeed.
Look carefully at the list of delegates you are provided with in advance. Many of these people could be useful contacts, new clients, collaborators or even mentors. Do some background research and then make an effort to seek out anyone interesting at the event.
- They don’t have clear objectives
Every company should have a clear set of objectives for each event they attend.
Are you going to promote your latest product or service or aiming to break into a new market or region?
Whatever your objective, come up with a 5 point plan that will help you achieve you aims. Then you can take advantage of opportunities when they come along.
- They don’t come up with creative ideas
Many companies rely on safe, tried-and-tested ideas marketing ideas. Unfortunately it’s unlikely your business will make a big impression because everyone else will be doing the same.
To really stand out, brainstorm creative ideas before the event, thinking of ways you can capture potential clients’ imagination.
Dress your booth in an exciting way, or run mini-events or games to build a buzz around your brand. With a bit of creativity, you could make a big impact.
- They don’t take advantage of mobile technology
Companies who don’t take advantage of mobile technology are really missing a trick.
How can you use technology at your event? How about blogging or tweeting about it beforehand? Or creating exclusive online content that people can access by scanning QR codes on their smartphones and tablets?
Social media hashtags can help spread the word about your products and services. Many people will keep track of events by following tweets and posts as they attend.
Delegate one member of your team to update your social media profiles throughout the event. They can also promote your brand by regularly tweeting key industry insights, live blogging or webcasting speaker events, or simply connecting online with other attendees.
- They don’t offer incentives
If people don’t benefit from connecting with your company, they won’t use your hashtag, join your mailing list or subscribe to your blog.
Bribing customers with prizes or free stuff will work temporarily but providing quality industry insights, loyalty discounts and excellent customer service is better in the long run.
- They hide from customer engagement and feedback
Companies can be shy about engaging with customers because they worry about negative feedback. But this can be a big opportunity.
Face-to-face meetings are generally more positive than remote contact, giving you a chance to engage with customers on a more personal level.
If something difficult does come up, being open and honest can help to resolve things quickly, turning a negative into a positive.
- They don’t offer useful promotional materials
Many companies offer free promotional items at events. A lot of these goody bags contain useless stuff, such as flyers, posters or beer mats. They usually end up in the nearest bin.
To really make the most of your marketing budget, think about what people might actually find useful.
A more durable printed bag with your company logo, containing useful items like an attractive mug, t-shirt or pen is more likely to be kept and reused. Every time that happens, more people become aware of your brand.
- They don’t focus on their target audience
Different events attract different audiences. If you offer the same information and promotional materials to everyone, you might not connect with your target customers.
Trade events should focus on information other professionals in your field need to know. More business-oriented promotional materials will work better here.
Public events can be a great place to cater to families (offer a branded rucksack or football) or pets (offer your own branded water bowls or dog biscuits).
Companies who use quirky and fun ideas will capture people’s imagination.
- They don’t use beautifully designed, promotional materials
If you company offers dull, ugly or boring design on your promotional materials it’s unlikely anyone will want to look at them.
First impressions count, so invest in a good designer, partner with a local artist, and choose printed bags that will positively boost your brand. The wrong colour scheme, logo or layout could put people off.
- They don’t follow up
Even if companies have made a huge effort to network and make new connections, they often forget to follow up after the event.
Rather than achieving their goals, they’ve wasted precious time. Consider sharing the follow-up with colleagues, asking others to help with phone calls and emails.
To ask one of our lovely team for advice about event planning or to speak about printed bags and which is best for you, contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org or 0191 268 7555.