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What to do When Your Trade Show is Cancelled

Empowering Brands digital media marketing trade shows cancelled

Along with the cancellation of many major events across the globe due to COVID-19, many B2Bs have seen their trade shows cancelled. Faced with this unexpected turn of events, vendors are struggling to fill the gap. We have some ideas and thoughts for what you could do if your trade show is cancelled.

1. Hold Your Own Event

You may have had an amazing booth planned for your trade show exhibit. Don’t pack it all up – consider holding your own online event that highlights your products or services. For example, Salesforce was able to turn their World Tour Sydney conference into a virtual event in just 10 days (read that story here).

If you decide to go virtual, consider these suggestions:

Less is More – You have more time for a person-to-person conversation. When speaking to a large audience, shorten your practiced presentation. If it is 20 minutes long, consider taking it down to 10 to 15 minutes. Your audience will thank you.

Test Everything – Your audience is more likely to click away if the picture or sound isn’t working properly, so make sure to test your remote experience as an audience member to get ahead of any adjustments that need to be made prior to the real event.

Include a CTA – Be sure to finish your presentation with a call-to-action for your audience. This could be inviting them to sign up as a member, asking them to contact you with questions or follow up, or even letting them know they can participate in your next event. Whatever your event involves, remember that the conversation and value doesn’t stop at the end of the event. Find a way to keep adding value to that connection.

Downloads Galore – You probably had brochures, pamphlets, etc. made up for the event. Be sure they can be downloaded with ease from your website. Don’t forget to share them through your social channels, with your event’s special hashtag; so that anyone using that hashtag doesn’t miss out on your posts or connecting with others that could be critical for networking.

2. Web Presence Means More Than Ever

Your business’s hub is your website, considering in many cases, clients can no longer drive to your location or visit your trade show booth. Be sure to update your website if it has been neglected. We recommend updating the homepage to reflect your Coronavirus/COVID-19 policy, along with visual / textual information that immediately conveys the value your business adds to your target audience. Post whether or not your office is open, along with any future plans. Let your clients know you are still at the phones as well as ready to receive their emails. Consider adding a chat box to your site to increase engagement.

3. If you’re working from home, use these tools. About one third of the American workforce is working from home. Here are a few of our favorite tools:

Zoom – This staple in video conferencing has been around for free and offers tons of options for your business of any size.

Slack – Get all your chats, assignments, and much more done in one place. No more searching various platforms for that one message you needed.

Trello – Your business should still brainstorm and come up with ideas just as it did before. However, your office whiteboard is no longer an option. Use this handy little app to allow your entire team to get in on the fun of organizing, prioritizing, and. much more.

TINY Pulse – Use this tool to gauge your team’s current mood, what the issues are, and even get suggestions for fixes. It is the web equivalent of the anonymous suggestion box.

An online document sharing system – choose the one that best suits your business. For example, Microsoft offers a variety of online options for Word, Excel, and their other programs, while Google does the same.

Let us know if you have any questions about these ideas and resources above. The team at Empowering Brands is here to help you make the most of these uncertain times.

*** Listen to this special bonus episode of the #EmpoweringIndustryPodcast ***

Empowering Industry Podcast special bonus episode talking about transitioning to virtual events and trainingIn this special episode Charli interviews Chris Krimitsos, Chief Creative Officer of Podfest Multimedia Expo. They talk about Chris’s event planning experience connecting brands and how he is seeing events and trainings move to a virtual space – a topic we felt was especially relevant as we head into the upcoming tradeshow season.

Chris brings the unique perspective of success from both sides of an event. He understands the challenges of the organizer that needs to move an audience, having himself facilitated over 2,000 events that have brought together business owners, toward economic growth.

New episodes come out every Monday and you can listen anywhere you get your podcasts. Get the details on our website: https://empoweringpumps.com/empowering-industry-podcast/ 

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