An event or exhibition is always a good way to showcase your brand or recently launched products. A strategic event or exhibition offers a lot of advantages, particularly in informing your target visitors about the type of “product” you bring.
An event or an exhibition is one of the many strategic marketing PR tools to promote a product or brand. It is also the right strategy to let your customers know that your business is still rolling, by keeping them up to date with newly launched products that your customers need.
As a PR professional, helping your brand organize a product exhibition is a great way to promote your brand or product and “sell” information to your targeted audience (customers, the media and the government). Well, maybe it’s not the main task of a PR professional to organize an exhibition; it’s an area for a brand or marketing guy. Still, PR people need to support this activity albeit within the context of how we will package the products and the kind of information/message that we would like to convey.
An event or exhibition involves lengthy preparation. A medium-sized event or exhibition needs around 2-3 months to prepare while a larger exhibition needs much longer, like 4-6 months. An event or exhibition requires a lot of resources, including human resources, and in most cases a company needs to hire a third party, such as an event organizer, to ensure that the event or exhibition runs smoothly. As PR/marketing communication professionals, it is our task to make sure that we deliver the right messages about the products to the media and visitors. A large event or exhibition will draw in thousands of visitors daily and it’s our job to make sure that your brand stands out among others by providing the right information that highlights the distinguish functions/features of your products.
How to run a great event or exhibition from a PR perspective?
First, you need to know your visitors: your target audience, their demography, etc. You should know this beforehand so you will have enough time to develop key messages and do research if necessary. At the end of the day, you have to understand what people come to see and why.
Second, set a goal and decide your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). Your strategic goal will match your overall business objectives and PR plan. You don’t hold an event just for people to see your products but also to build good understanding among your audiences. KPI will assist you in figuring out how to measure the goals.
Third, invite the relevant publications or media outlets that will cover your story. Prepare the messages for the media to disseminate to readers. Make sure you have good media relations, invite the right media and follow up the invitation to get maximum results.
Fourth, prepare a good media kit (press releases, fact sheets, brochures) and choose relevant merchandise as giveaways. It is important to prepare documents and related printed materials days prior to an event and make sure to have enough copies. As a token of appreciation, we could also give the media or visitors merchandises or goodie bags. Don’t just buy a product for the sake of it, but really think about its relation to your stand concept and how it will make the person receiving it feel and prompt him to use it.
There may not be a wholly perfect event or exhibition, but to do a great job, preparation is the key. When all is set, then it is time for you to impress the visitor by telling them a story of your product!