Trade shows and events are one of the most effective ways to grow your business, build brand recognition, expose your product or service to potential customers, and boost visibility. In fact, attending an event can sometimes be the difference between success and failure. Unfortunately, there are some very common mistakes that companies make when preparing for their own or a third party’s events and trade shows. These mistakes typically result in wasted time, lower attendance, and frustration on the part of attendees. However, by closely examining these three main mistakes, you will be better prepared to avoid them in the future.

The first mistake is focusing too much on the event space, exhibits, and marketing. Although participating in trade shows and events is about more than just presenting your product or service to your audience, having great exhibit and venue design can definitely increase your exposure and lead to more visitors and participants. However, this should not be your only focus. You should also think about the benefits that the presence of your booth will generate. After all, you are not just out there to sell your products or services; you want to create a great impression as well. By planning your booth layout, creative advertising, and providing attendees with the information they need before and after the event, you can significantly increase the value of your virtual event or trade show appearance.

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The second mistake to avoid at events and trade shows is focusing too much on exhibiting. While exhibits are certainly very valuable tools for generating potential interest in your company and its offerings, they should not be your only focus at an event. Remember that you also have to make your presence felt with your guests. Do not simply set up a table in the middle of the convention floor and hope that your presence will make people walk over. Instead, invite people to your table or booth, give them a quick pitch about your products or services, and close by with a thank you and directions to your website.

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A third mistake to avoid at events and trade shows is pitching your product or service repeatedly. If you are a new company or are trying to win over a growing list of customers, this practice could work against you. It is a great way to attract attention, but you want to keep your message short and sweet. People are busy. Your message should be simple, yet intriguing enough to pique the interest of attendees and potential customers.

Another mistake to avoid at events and trade shows is relying on too many booth displays or kiosks. While impressive, these types of advertising tools do not necessarily get the most attention from your attendees or potential customers. Instead, consider using a combination of colorfully wrapped giveaways, freebies, and promotional items to lure visitors into your booth. Consider partnering with other companies that provide booth exhibit services to give your booth an even greater professional look and feel.

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Finally, you will not see the results that you want if you are not willing to put in the effort and take the time to promote your brand at events and trade shows. A steady stream of new customers is critical to success. You cannot afford to let a few bad apples spoil the bunch. If you follow these simple, yet insightful, business strategies, you will ensure that you will get the most out of every booth or kiosk that you display at an event or trade show. Your brand will be well-received and will attract repeat visitors, which means a larger customer base for your company.