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30 Ideas in 30 Minutes: Business Expo and Showcase Edition

Worker Bees from Blue Bumble joined forces with members of the Greater Lowell Chamber of Commerce to come up with 30 Ideas in 30 Minutes: Business Expo and Showcase Edition!

Together, they came up with some tips to make your booth be the BUZZ of the Expo!

  1. Spread the word about the event to clients and friends in person. Leverage all your marketing channels: email, website, social media, phone, etc
  2. If you can secure a list of attendees or if you’re a B2B, vendors, reach out to the people attending before the event
  3. First Impressions are everything – present your cohesive brand. Use bright colors and lighting to stand out
  4. Create visually engaging displays that will catch attention of prospective leads
  5. Think of an easy way to keep people in your booth longer such as setting up a charging station where people can plug in their phone for a few minutes while they are talking with you!
  6. Choose the Right Location – think corners, end of aisle and by the tasting rooms
  7. Give show attendees a gift to remember you.  High-end merchandise includes items such as USB drives, portable battery chargers, Bluetooth speakers, phone cases, screen cleaners, headphones, activity trackers. Choose something that is relevant to your brand. Lesser expensive items include reusable bags, T-shirts, baseball caps, sunglasses, mugs, cups, water bottles, stress balls. Tip: Don’t blast clothing and wearable accessories with huge logos. People will keep and wear fashionable items with a discrete logo.
  8. Think about holding a raffle, giving away a prize that appeals to a broad audience
  9. Staff your booth with your best team members. Choose those with outgoing personalities who will enjoy speaking with new people
  10. Bring enough staff to allow for frequent breaks. It is important to have employees fresh and energetic throughout the event
  11. If you have enough staff, think about assigning 1-2 hour shifts, keeping the staff fresh will help with keeping conversations engaging
  12. Step out of the booth and engage people in the aisle
  13. Remember this is your chance to let your customers put a face with your brand and to start building trust. Be genuine and helpful in your conversations. Ditch the cheesy sales pitch
  14. Start a conversation with an open-ended question. Try: “What brings you to the show?” or “How is the expo going for you so far?”
  15. Follow any hashtags for the event on social media to do some pre-show networking
  16. Schedule your Social Media for the day of the event, keeping you off the phone & open for engaging. Keeping your presence well-advertised
  17. After you receive a business card, jot down a note on it to jog memory when the expo is over
  18. When you meet people you wish to talk with further, plan to have lunch or coffee. Set a date, if you can without being too pushy
  19. Make it about networking, not selling. You want to hear about what they do more than what you do.
  20. Promote your presence at the show ahead of time – think direct mail, invitations, inserts in your billings to customers, or email campaign
  21. Be sure to have enough of your collateral material – reorder business cards, brochures, etc. before the event, so you don’t run out
  22. Network with your fellow vendors! They could be a potential customer
  23. Welcome them In: Don’t use tables as barricades. Increase your traffic by placing tables off to the side. Have an open entry into your booth
  24. Think vertically, Banners and hanging displays can be a great way to take your logo to new heights. A hanging display will help bring your booth design up a notch, allowing attendees to see your branding from across the floor
  25. Don’t ignore your current customers, sure you already work with the, but you could learn a thing or two about ways to improve or introduce them to a new product or service!
  26. Follow Up! Follow-up after the show is the best way to guarantee success. This is where many exhibitors drop the ball. Make use of the names you have gathered; send thank you notes, send out your informational brochures, follow-up on your sales leads, and fulfill your promises to send information immediately.
  27. Be interactive – bring up spin to win wheels or games (guess the jellybeans or cornhole) as way to add interaction to your booth
  28. Promote an incentive to visit your booth, like putting a card in the gift bags or handing out as people come into the expo to visit your booth and “trade up” or “trade in” for a higher end item. Think trade the charging cord for a power bank
  29. Think of their booth as a mini retail store. Say hi to everyone who walks by – use the foot traffic to pass out things like flyers or stickers
  30. HAVE FUN!

Bonus! What to AVOID

  • Don’t talk, text or tweet on your phone. People won’t want to bother you if you look busy. If you have an emergency that requires you to be on the phone, step out of view
  • Don’t sit or stand with your back to the aisle. People will hesitate to bother you if look unapproachable. Stand facing the aisle so you can smile and greet people as they pass by
  • Don’t eat in your booth. It is messy and distracting. Save snacks for your breaks
  • Don’t ignore potential customers while catching up on office gossip with other coworkers in the booth
  • Don’t leave someone standing without engaging them. If you are already engaging with another guest, find a way to invite the new person into the conversation. “Example: Say Hi, and introduce yourself and the person you’ve been speaking with as (name) from (XYZ company). Ask the new person where they’re from…”

 

 

13 Deadly Design Sins

13 Deadly Sins Graphic Designers Should Avoid

Whether you are just starting your career, you’re a seasoned veteran or you are on the hunt for the right graphic designer for your company – here are few things to keep in mind.

Comic Sans is obsolete

This front from the early 2000s is a big no-no for any self-respecting graphic designer. Avoid this at all costs – it’s not worth it.

Not naming files correctly

Most graphic designers have a naming convention, read up on them – come up with your own. Stay organized and no “asdfghj” file names, please and thank you!

Using Photoshop filters to disguise crappy images

We know Photoshop has a few tricks up it sleeves to help hide the pixelated picture you’re using. Do yourself (and everyone) a favor and just find or request an image with higher resolution.

Create a logo that works

Make sure that the logo you created is a vector application, this way it can work on a printed brochure or an electronic billboard.

Relying on spell check

Your computer is smart, but it’s not a real person. If you use the tools at your disposal without thinking (and reading) you could find yourself in a bind.

Not proof reading.

Red it. Read it again 😉

Don’t Flatten your Photoshop file

You may never know when you need to go back and “make the logo bigger.”

Relying too much on design trends

Your work will date quickly. Design trends can be fun to play with, and you may think it’s important to jump on trends as they come, but remember that your design may have to last longer than that trend will be around.

Too much text on one line

Find a way to cut down or reformat text so it doesn’t become a long sentence that just does not fit with the design.

Improperly kerning

If your kerning, 9the spacing between letters0, is not consistent, your text can be completely misread.

Cropping excessively

If you must crop, do it sparingly and make sure to not change the composition of the image. And if at all possible, leave the image alone.

Looking on stock websites for logos

Your client is coming to you for originality – stock images are a huge no-no. Not to mention the possible copyright issues down the line. Stay far, far away.

Overdoing shadows and embossing

Amateur & tacky – steer clear.

 

These are just a few of “don’t touch with a 10-foot pole” rules, but some others include:  don’t work without having coffee first, don’t steal (or borrow) someone else’s artwork, and don’t be lazy! Get designing and have some fun!

An almost foolproof way for increasing Twitter followers

An Almost Foolproof Plan to Increase Your Twitter Followers

We are living during a time that everyone shares, well, pretty much everything. Whether you like it or not, whether you agree with them or not. One thing we can all agree on it that it’s gonna fill up on your Twitter feed.

Twitter allows users to follow important topics, people, and conversations that are relevant or interesting to them as it happens… like a breaking news feed tailored to you and your interests. This type of connection will help you find prospects for your business. Now, how the honey to do you make sure the right people are following you?

Tweet Often, at the Right Times

Who is going to follow someone that never tweets? You should be tweeting at least once a day, but truthfully if you’re looking to be visible set your goal at 4-15 times a day. Along the same lines, make sure you’re not wasting your 140 characters. The best times to tweet are before tweeters head to work (before 9 am) or after they are finished for the day (after 6 pm). That’s right, weekdays over weekends. Don’t forget to cater to different time zones if your target audience is worldwide or across the country.

Use a Scheduling Tool

Don’t let the idea of tweeting upwards of 2,000 characters a day scare you. Tweeting regularly increases your visibility, reach and ability to engage and is manageable! Using a business tool like Hootsuite or Social Sprout to schedule your tweets keeps you visible and notification alerts let you stay in the conversation on your terms. Oh and don’t forget, weekend tweets between 1 pm and 3 pm and weekday tweets tend to get read more J

Share Others’ Tweets

Did you come across something that you loved or found interesting? Share it! You can retweet it (send it to your followers as is) or quote the tweet and add your comments in a new tweet. These are great ways to create a support network and encourage others to follow you and share your posts in return. Just be careful that you don’t go wild and retweet 50 tweets from the same users in one day, spread the love.

#Awesome #Connect #Power

You can’t deny the power of hashtags! Hashtags are an awesome way to connect with the twittersphere and attract new followers that have similar interests PLUS they will increase your visibility. But like everything in life, hashtags should be used in moderation. Pick one or two relevant or amusing hashtags, which add to your tweet. Don’t just add hashtags onto words that appeared in the rest of your tweet, or include them just for the sake of it.

Follow Your Followers

It may seem pointless to do this when you’re focused on gaining followers, but people who notice that you didn’t follow them back might unfollow you. Also, when you follow back, some people might respond to you publicly, which will give you some added exposure to their followers. Don’t worry about keeping up with that many people or tweets, you can be selective in who/what you read.

Keep it Cool

A tweeter typically checks a few recent tweets before deciding whether or not to follow an account. Be sure to have fun tweets that are informative and interesting. Mix it up; make sure you are sharing links, videos, and photos. Appeal to the visual senses too.

Twitter is one of the easier Social Media platforms to figure out. And when you get lost remember the golden rule of Twitter – use it to engage.