Online promotion of an exhibition: When and how?
If you’re exhibiting at a (trade) fair you want your network to attend the exhibition and visit your stand. To accomplish this you shouldn’t wait until the last moment to invite them. Use online promotion to let people know the exhibition is coming and they shouldn’t miss it!
How early should you start with your online promotion?
You should start as early as four months before the exhibition with your online promotion. At that time, you registered at the exhibition and your booth is being designed. Put the logo of the exhibition on your website and in your e-mail signature.
Let your followers on the social media channels of your company know that you are going to the exhibition and publish a few teasers to make them curious about the exhibition and your booth. For example: a detail picture of the booth design, a sneak peak of the product you’re promoting at the exhibition, etc.
Two months before the exhibition you can start actively promoting your attendance at the exhibition. Publish more info about the exhibition and the goal of your participation (launching a new product, introducing a new service, increasing your name or network) to make sure people are attending the exhibition and going to visit your booth.
How can you promote your attendance at the exhibition online?
Of course this depends on the mix of communication tools that your company is using. You should at least send an e-mail to your clients/suppliers/network to invite them to this event. And always place the event logo or banner on your company website. If your company sends out a newsletter, you could write a short article about your presence at the event to let your readers know you are attending.
Most events publish an overview of the exhibitors on their event website. Make sure that your company is part of that overview and the right logo and link to your website is used.
You should also use your social media channels to post updates about the design of the booth, the product and the event. And react to other social media channels publishing updates about the event. For example, if the event has its own Twitter channel or hashtag, retweet their tweets and promote your presence using that hashtag.
What types of content could you publish on your social media channels?
If you got free entrance passes, hold a competition to give your followers a chance to win them. Or use a countdown: every month (and the last month every week) you can post a short reminder: “just two weeks before the opening of…. Will you be there?” You can also make sure your followers will visit your booth/event by showing them what your special plans are at the event (special food or drinks, live entertainment, free gadgets etc.)
And last but not least: use sneak peaks to make them curious. Publish a small part of the event or booth design, post pictures of the building/installing proces of your booth or start introducing your new product.
Good luck with your online promotion!