If you are not selling out your expo hall, your organization is totally missing out on the revenue potential of exhibitor booth fees. The ASAE reports that exhibitor booth fees are the second highest source of non-dues revenue for trade associations, second only to event registration fees. Through 20+ years of helping associations to power up their revenue, PAI Sales has found the following tips to help association executives sell out their expo halls.
Having well-known companies is a great way to establish trust with other companies and to add another layer of legitimacy to your event. The value that these anchor exhibitors bring to your event extends well past the amount that they paid for their exhibit space and sponsorship. Think about ways that you can give extra exposure to these companies on your event website, floor plan, and brochure.
SHARE SEGMENT-SPECIFIC UPDATES
If your event attracts exhibitors that are easily broken down into industry segments, be sure to create unique marketing communication messages for each segment. Companies will want to know which of their competitors will be there and/or which segments are currently underrepresented at your show. One-size-fits-all marketing messaging is becoming much less effective.
PROVIDE RESOURCES TO HELP EXHIBITORS BE SUCCESSFUL
When exhibitors are successful they return next year. Anything that you can do to help them be successful is a worthy pursuit. You know your members better than anyone. Sending exhibitors trending topics of interest to your members is just one strategy that can help them be better prepared to have meaningful conversations at their booths. This will also serve to enhance the attendee experience. Another thing to consider, if you have experience with the venue, is passing along any setup and visibility tips that you can.
USE POST-SHOW FEEDBACK
Implementing a post-show survey for the vendors is not only for the purpose of incorporating feedback and improving your event, it is also a great way to target your prospect list and boost sales next year. Based on the feedback, you can reasonably forecast how many vendors are likely to return and adjust your sales and marketing efforts accordingly.