6 Creative Ways to Draw Customers to Your Booth at Fairs, Shows & Festivals

ASK GAIL: ANSWERING YOUR SMALL BUSINESS QUESTIONS

ASKgail

Hi Gail,

I am a marketing manager for a new home improvement company.  I typically generate leads for our sales team by participating in various fairs, festivals, home shows, and other local events.  I need a way to draw potential customers to my 10 x 10 booth.  How can I stick out from my competitors?  We do simple giveaways that they can visually see, but I want to be different. Any ideas??  Please help!!

Loren K.

HomeImprovementSelect.com

Hi Loren,

I love this question! Here are some of my suggestions:

  1. People tend to bring their kids to these things (don’t want to pay for a babysitter) so you need to keep the kids busy in your booth so the parents can stick around longer. I would make one wall of your booth a chalkboard and let the kids go crazy.
  2. Nothing pulls people into a booth more than free food and beverages. Offer something less ordinary, like espresso, cappuccino or one of those large glass drink dispensers and they can help themselves. Plus, if you give them a drink they feel slightly obligated to look around your booth while they finish it.
  3. You want to collect leads, and the best way is always through some sort of ballot box (you can capture names electronically through an iPad as well). The draw has to be attractive, such as a daily draw for a $200 Home Depot gift card (since these are home renovators attending the show).
  4. Instead of useless swag give a useful handout, like a checklist of all the things you need to do to your home to prepare it for winter. This is something people are more likely to keep, even post on the fridge. Make sure it is well branded with your company’s info.
  5. Have a fun mascot that kids can pose with (with your company’s name somewhere on the mascot that won’t get hidden behind a posing child). Then encourage their parents to post the photo to Instagram (maybe doing this gives them a second ballot in the draw). Posting the photo to Instagram gets your company seen by their followers.
  6. Get the word out in advance on social media by tweeting out to people attending the show to bring a digital photo of their home for a free, on the spot transformation (you bring the photo into an editing program and quickly swap out windows, doors, siding, etc. so they can see the possibilities). Show the before and after transformations up on a big screen for all to see.

I could go on and on, but this is a good start. Best of luck! Gail

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Author: Gail Oliver, Online Small Business Consultant

I'm Gail Oliver, an online marketing consultant. Welcome to my blog, chosen one of the Top 10 Small Business Blogs to Follow in 2014 by American Express Open Forum. If you need help with your e-commerce business, be sure to see MY SERVICES, above.