11 Oct 2019

A Guide to Successfully Launching a Product at a Trade Show

Ask any exhibitor at a trade fair what their goal is, and you’ll hear two things – makes sales and launch a new product. Spend some time thinking about it and you come to the conclusion that it’s more or less the same thing.

To launch a new product with flying colours means to move as many items off the shelf as possible during the trade show. You can’t have a better setup to advertise on your new product and gain attention of the right audience. With careful marketing, you might even be name checked by industry press during the event or in the highlight recap afterwards.

It’s a truth universally acknowledged that a frequent exhibitor will launch a new product at a trade show at least once! And why not make said launch a victorious achievement from the onset? Take out your notepads, because we’re about to map out a foolproof blueprint to successful launches.

Everything begins in the early, early planning stages before you even register for the trade show. Assessment is key to understand whether the even in question is a good stage for a launch in the first place. Some events are geared more towards networking. Others are built around lectures and a conference track.

You should identify the events that are specifically organised to connect supply with demand. While you’re at the planning stages, take note when said event is taking place and if you are able to have a working, final product. You don’t want to rush the production schedule, because that is how subpar products enter the world. It’s all about the blissful confluence of trade show dates and your production schedule.

Once you have made professional event selection, we move onto presentation.

The product has to be the star attraction at your trade show booth, which means that your booth should be designed around the product. Not always but in some cases it’s possible to demonstrate your product in action at your booth. Dynamic and interactive displays are where you should be aiming at for your design. Here is a handy list of questions to keep in mind for this stage:

  1. How big should the booth be to accommodate space for staff, product displays and visitors, who will want to interact with the product?
  2. In the case of display-only products, what is the most creative way to shelve and feature it?
  3. In the case of live demonstrations, what are the logistics and power demands?
  4. What are the best ways to promote your product launch on your trade show booth and does your existing booth design support a product launch?

The next step is to generate conversation about your product launch early. We’re not talking during the trade show? We are not talking about a week before the show? We are talking about months in advance. To get the results you wish, use every tool available. Reach out to existing clients to visit your booth at the show. Take to social media to give updates about the production schedule and give some behind-the-scenes content. One of the best tools to have is a virtual countdown that you can call back on once you draw closer. You should also prepare and disseminate a press release to industry magazines and blogs that cover news!

But don’t have random information about your product float around the Internet without a home. You should incorporate a landing page on your website, where you’re able to present your product in the best possible light. Some companies move their product launch onto the homepage itself so that it’s the first thing that a visitor sees when they log onto the website.