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How to get a decent ROI on an exhibition stand

Posted By Andrew Nicholls  
15:00 PM

If you’re looking for ways to find new business, there’s no doubt that exhibiting at industry events is one way to do this. 


Your ideal clients are handed to you on a silver platter, with the exhibition hall filled with potential business leads for you to connect with. Having an exhibition stand is another way you can also strengthen your brand awareness. 


But one of the biggest things we hear from clients enquiring about exhibition stands is, ‘Do you get a decent ROI from an exhibition stand?’. 


And it’s a fair question. An exhibition stand and the event can take a massive chunk of your marketing budget.


Why should you measure ROI for an exhibition event? 


Honestly, if you’re going to the effort of attending an industry event and buying an exhibition stand, it’s not going to be the cheapest thing in your marketing budget. 


It’s believed that getting $4 for every $1 you spend is a great ROI ratio to aim for. 


But how do you measure this for an event? Think about the following:

  • How much did the event cost? 
  • What is the average value of your sales?
  • What is the lifetime value of a customer?
  • What is your lead to sales conversation rate? 

Make sure you’re capturing all leads and putting them into your CRM as soon as you’re back in the office. Keep in mind that your product (especially if higher end), may take a longer time to convert to a sale. 

It’s important to think about all these factors when working out your marketing budget for the coming year.


Tips to make your exhibition stand worthwhile 


1. Be clear on your end goals of being at an exhibition

Before you even begin thinking of what your stand should look like, you need to be clear on your big WHY – WHY are you doing this? Do you want to sell more products, do you want to generate leads, do you want to introduce a new product? When you’re clear on your end goal, you can start to design a branded exhibition stand around this. 


2. Know who you want to target at the exhibition

If you’re getting an exhibition stand created, one thing the design company will ask you is, ‘Who is your target audience?’. Once you know who you’re appealing to, you can make sure your stand addresses all their pain points and helps to sell your product or service. For example, if you’re appealing to millennials, having a highly interactive stand will attract their attention, and you’ll get more leads into your CRM. 


3. Use your booth space to your advantage

When you secure a spot at an event, the organisers will let you know the booth dimensions. Make sure you give these to your exhibition stand designer so that they can come up with some ideas for you. Be inventive – if your space is small, think about going upwards, having your branding standing tall above other stands for a point of difference. 


4. Nail your branding – with words and graphics

On an exhibition stand, you’re better to go for fewer words with large, clear fonts to grab the attention of your audience. Your key message should always be on the top half of your stand, so it’s visible across the hall. Graphics always have a better impact when used right. They’re a great way to portray a message quickly without using text. 


5. Make your booth memorable with technology 

If you want a bigger ROI, you need to have an interactive stand. People love to have a bit of fun, and if you’ve got augmented reality or virtual reality, they’ll want to play with you. Your audience will be attracted to your stand if you’ve got something they haven’t seen and will be more likely to give you their details in return for taking part in your stand. 


When thinking ROI for your exhibition stand, think long-term

Before you start exhibiting, do your research. Be clear on your goals and your audience and check out what others are doing – who does it well, what do you love, and what do you hate. 


Once you have this sorted out, you can then invest in an exhibition stand with confidence, knowing you’ll get the leads you want. 


And think long-term – an exhibition stand is something you can use for years, not just a once off. 


Also, remember to follow up after the event too – don’t just put leads in your CRM and forget them. Follow up with them, reminding them about you and your products. It can take up to 6 points of contact before a person is ready to buy from you. 


If you want advice on what will work for your company or need a hand to create your stand, contact Nimlok today to see how we can help you get the exhibiting edge over your competitors.