event speaker
May 27, 2016

What do customers want from an event?

Taking your brand to an event or exhibition can be a fantastic way to get your name out there, raise awareness and connect with more customers – but it can also be a lot of investment down the drain if you don’t make the most of it.

The day of an event is always busy, can be chaotic and is often quite a hectic experience for customers or attendees. They’re surrounded by stalls and have so much to take in, and so many exhibitors fall short when it comes to giving them what they want and really generating leads.

Today we’re thinking about what customers really want when they visit your stand during an event. Sometimes, we think we get so caught up in preparing for the event beforehand, that we don’t always really consider how we’re going to interact with customers on the day, and that can lead to valuable connections passing by.

Here’s our top tips on what attendees are really looking for from you at your next event:

Something to take away…

People don’t approach your stand at an event just for the fun of it – they are there to learn something new. To see something they haven’t seen before. To find out they want something they didn’t realise they wanted.

To really make an impact at your event, you need to open people’s eyes, get them thinking about something new, and then give them what they need to internalize what they’ve learnt, and act on it in the future if they want to.

Think about the customer experience at your stand – what will you show them while they’re there? What key products are you introducing them to? How do you want them to feel when they leave?

When you know the answers, develop a meaningful takeaway that you can give them, which enables them to take the next step once they’re away from the event. It doesn’t have to be a physical document or item – it could be signing them up to a mailing list, or getting their details to send them a download or video.

…and we don’t just mean a basic goody bag

But, when we talk about giving stuff away to your customers, we don’t just mean free pens.

Now, we supply printed bags, so we’re all for giving goodie bags to customers, but what’s in the bags needs to be valuable, and not the same old stuff that they could have gotten from any stand.

Again, think about the questions from the previous point, and consider who your target audience are. What can you give them in a quality goody bag that supplies a need for them, as well as linking back to your product?

You want to give people something valuable and meaningful, but free stuff shouldn’t be your primary approach to connecting with customers at any event.

Interactivity with the product

Probably the most important thing you can do at any event – show attendees what you’re selling, don’t just tell them about it.

Of course, with some products and services this is easier said than done. But, where possible, include an interactive, hands on demonstration of your product or service in your stall. For example, if your a wine company selling a new wine, provide tasters and give away samples in a personalised bottle bag. Alternatively, if you’re a tech company, you probably aren’t going to give away the device/software you’re selling, however, you may be able to give away some trials or something cool in relation to your product.

It could be a demo version of software, a dedicated member of staff who is just there to show how something works, a taster session or even a free sample – whatever you do, give customers a taste, and make sure it leaves a lasting impression.

The right people

Your event stand is only as good as the people on it – in the mass of exhibitors at an event, it’s easy to blend in and become forgettable if you don’t have team members on your stand that are prepared to really engage with people and promote your product.

It’s best to find a mix of people to host your event stand that both know the product inside out, and can talk about it easily and naturally in conversation, but that also have the people skills to draw people in and really make a positive impression.

Listening to customers at an event is important too – it shouldn’t just be about reeling off a sales pitch and hoping for the best. Staff need to be prepared to hear questions and provide relevant answers, and talk to each customer in a way that engages with them on an individual level.

To find out more about how we can help businesses attending events, get in touch! Call 0191 268 7555, or email sales@theprintedbagshop.co.uk.