Leveraging Social Media in Your Trade Show Booths
Social media continues to be one of the biggest influences on online marketing, and it can be found anywhere, even in trade show booths. Integrating social media into your display stands can be tricky, but if you do it, you can attract a lot of attention, even among people who can’t visit in person. Get enough buzz, and you could lure people to the show to check you out!
FourSquare is a social network devoted to locations. Users “check in” when they’re at a place, letting the world know where they are and what they’re doing at that moment. This makes it perfect for attracting people to your trade show displays.
- Offer incentives for checking in, such as discounts, promotions, or exclusive downloads. These can be set up to automatically get sent to a user the moment they check in with you.
- Encourage visitors to leave notes on FourSquare talking about what they saw at your trade show exhibit.
- If you want to make your trade show booth a popular place, encourage people to use it as a meet-up point, using FourSquare to broadcast their location.
Still the king of social networks, Facebook is approaching a billion users worldwide. Chances are, you already have a Facebook fan page set up, and this is a great opportunity to leverage it through your trade show displays.
- Use custom QR Codes at your exhibition stand that send your visitors directly to Facebook to “Like” you or comment on your trade show displays. (QRMobilize offers a nice free software suite that includes a robust custom QR Code generator that supports multiple social network features.)
- Have a tablet or smartphone set up and ready to take pictures of your visitors for instant upload, so they can immediately tag themselves in the photo.
- Keep a running diary on Facebook of the day’s events, and encourage visitors to join in the discussion.
The big appeal of Twitter is it’s simplicity. You get 140 characters for your message. @Username targets a message at a particular user, and #Hashtag names track discussions on a particular topic. That’s about it. It’s incredibly easy to use, and that makes it great for trade shows where time is always short.
- Carve out a hashtag for your trade show displays. Make sure all your Tweets during the event use it, and make it easily seen at your trade show displays so that visitors can follow it.
- Buy an inexpensive LED dot matrix display and have a live running broadcast of the Tweets you send and receive during the show. This is effective at encouraging visitor participation.
- Offer promotions or incentives for visitors to retweet your messages during the show, such as entering them into a contest.
YouTube remains the most popular video-sharing site online, with hundreds of millions of unique visitors every month. Mobile applications make it easy to record video at your trade show displays and upload it almost instantaneously straight to YouTube.
- Any sort of announcements, conferences, demonstrations, or any other public activity should be recorded and uploaded immediately.
- Use other social media – like Facebook and Twitter – to announce your videos to guests as soon as they’re uploaded.
This is really just the tip of the iceberg; social media has almost infinite applications. Have you found any creative uses for it at your trade show displays? We’d love to hear about them in the comments!
Want to learn more about trade show marketing? Check out our article on using giveaways to drive engagement at your booth!