In a marketing landscape increasingly dominated by digital strategies, the enduring importance of traditional methods like exhibitions and events often gets overlooked. For marketing directors and managers, trade shows and exhibitions remain an indispensable part of the marketing mix.
In this blog, we explore why, in a world swayed by digital impulses, exhibitions and events still hold a place of pivotal importance, especially in the post-COVID era where people are keen to reinstate face to face contact.
Reflecting on Industry Resilience: A notable perspective
“the number of exhibitions held in the UK’s main exhibition venues in 2022 was almost back to pre-Covid levels, showing significant recovery with some indicators on a par or up on 2019 highlighting the resilience of our industry”
– Shaun Hinds, Event Industry Alliance Chair
Comprehensive Exhibition Support by Waypoint
At Waypoint, our approach to exhibitions is holistic. We understand that an exhibition presence for clients such as Hi Level, Oxford Education Online, Strictly Education, Expromet and Surveyors to Education is a significant investment. Success at these events relies on meticulous preparation and execution.
Our services span the full spectrum of exhibition needs: from pre-marketing strategies like e-shots and social media amplification to encourage attendance, to designing compelling stand artwork, informative flyers, and engaging videos that showcase our clients’ services and expertise.
We employ techniques like setting up competitions for effective lead generation and crafting engaging materials for display. Understanding that the post-event phase is equally crucial, we implement follow-up marketing strategies to capitalise on the connections made during the event.
We also take care of practical logistics, liaising with event organisers on the setup of technology, furniture, and other exhibition essentials to ensure everything runs smoothly for our clients. In the last year alone we have had clients exhibiting in Birmingham, London. Paris and even Texas.
“Waypoint has designed two exhibition stands for us for trade events and both have been amazing! The content and images have captured our brand and product range extremely well and the design has been eye-catching and resulted in many compliments from exhibition visitors”
– Sarah Richardson, Hi Level
The Unmatched Value of Face-to-Face Interactions
Despite the widespread reach and efficiency of digital marketing, it lacks the connection and engagement that face-to-face interactions at exhibitions provide. These events offer a sensory-rich experience that digital platforms simply cannot replicate.
The power of a handshake, the immediacy of eye contact, and the opportunity for real-time feedback and dialogue create stronger, more meaningful connections. They leave indelible impressions on customers, prospects, and industry peers.
Building Trust and Credibility
Exhibitions offer a tangible testament to a brand’s commitment and credibility. They provide a stage for companies to physically demonstrate their products or services, allowing potential clients to experience and understand these offerings firsthand.
This direct interaction builds a level of trust and credibility that virtual environments can seldom achieve. It’s an essential element in the decision-making process, particularly in industries where the tangible aspects of a product or service are crucial in influencing buyer behaviour.
Networking and Surprising Opportunities
Exhibitions provide an unparalleled environment for networking, bringing together industry leaders, potential clients, and competitors in a single space. The post-COVID desire to ‘get back out there’ has only intensified the value of these in-person interactions. These events are where lasting business relationships are formed, where partnerships are forged, and where future opportunities are uncovered. Many of our clients have discovered unexpected business avenues and forged strong relationships at these events.
Showcasing Innovation and Competence
Participation in exhibitions allows companies to demonstrate their innovative edge and industry competence. It’s a platform for launching new products, showcasing advancements, and differentiating from competitors. For our clients, exhibitions have been a critical factor in reinforcing their market positions and unveiling new, often surprising, avenues for growth and collaboration.
A Synergy with Digital Marketing
Recognising the synergy between exhibitions and digital marketing is crucial for a comprehensive marketing strategy. We use social media and digital tools to enhance the exhibition experience, promoting attendance, and extending the event’s impact through online content sharing and engagement. This blended approach maximises the reach and effectiveness of exhibition participation, leveraging the strengths of both digital and traditional marketing methods.
In the digital age, the value of exhibitions remains irreplaceable. They are experiences that forge deeper connections, build trust, and reveal unexpected opportunities.
For agencies like Waypoint, exhibitions remain a vibrant and essential thread in the marketing tapestry, especially in a post-COVID world craving personal interactions.