Trade shows are an extremely important part of business, and should not be overlooked. Trade shows offer a great opportunity to showcase new products, attract positive press coverage, and gain new customers. However, trade shows can be expensive as simply securing a spot on the floor of a trade show can be costly. This only scratches the surface of costs as you also need to factor in other costs such as exposition services, hotels, and transportation. Thankfully, there are steps you can take to lower the costs of a trade show to fit your budget. Here are some ways that you can maximize your trade show experience without breaking the bank.

Prepare Early

Preparing early for a trade show allows you the maximum amount of time to prepare for a trade show and will save you a lot of money. Usually trade shows will offer a discount price for registering early and committing to their trade show. This also applies to any hotels or flights that you may need to book to attend the trade. Typically, hotels and airlines will give you better rates if you book them months in advance as opposed to the last minute. Last minute bookings could cost you an arm and a leg, and could eat up a large portion of your trade show budget. However, getting a good rate from the trade show, hotel, and airline can greatly reduce the huge cost of attending a trade show and allow you to allocate funds to other areas such as improving the quality of your booth. In addition, preparing early will offer you plenty of time to get all of the supplies that you may need to create your trade show booth. This may offer you the chance to be patient and wait for better deals or sales to occur. Preparing early for a trade show can lower prices on just about all aspects of the show, so start preparing!

Find A Good Location

One way to maximize your trade show experience is by picking the perfect location to set up. Your location at a trade show is very important, and it could make or break your success at the event. For example, if your booth is located near an event’s main hall or by other popular companies, then there will be a large flow of consumers nearby. These consumers will likely stop by and see what you have to offer, giving you a chance to impress them and make some new customers. In contrast, if your location is in a far off corner of the trade show and there are no big name companies around you, then consumers may decide to stay away from your area.  That being said, trade shows may charge more for areas that are expected to be extremely busy. This means that if you are on a budget you are going to have to find the perfect balance between price and a good location. It may be easier to look into hiring exposition companies that can help you find a location with the best economic value. Exposition services can help you get the maximum value out of your trade show experience by bringing a great amount of expertise to the table. Regardless of whether you use outside help or not, focus on maximizing your trade show experience by finding a perfect balance with a location on the show floor that will both bring in customers but also won’t break the bank.

Hand Out Free Merchandise

If there’s one thing that drives consumers to a trade show booth, its free merchandise. Free merchandise can range from wristbands to T-shirts, and is almost sure to increase the amount of consumers that stop by your booth. The best part about giving out these items is that they typically cost very little to produce. Simply putting a logo on a wristband or T-shirt does not cost a lot and is definitely worth the extra customers they bring in. Additionally, this merchandise can be a great way to advertise your company around the trade show. If people are wearing your merchandise or showing it off, then even more customers can become interested in your business. Handing out free merchandise is an extremely cost effective way of creating interest in your trade show booth and should be considered as very strong option for companies on a budget.

Focus On People Not Size

It’s easy to get carried away with creating the biggest booth at a trade show, but unfortunately if you’re on a budget then this is just not possible. In fact, if you’re looking to reduce costs, then try downsizing your booth and focus more on securing customers with one-on-one interactions. While this may sound counterproductive, if you pull it off correctly you could save a lot of money and still maintain a healthy amount of sales and new leads. Bring your best salespeople to the trade show- these should be people you trust and are great brand ambassadors. You can then work together to create a strong personal sales pitch that you can use to close deals. Although big booths may have an easier time attracting consumers to visit, that doesn’t mean that nobody visits small booths. If your area is unique and seems to offer value in some form, then customers will come to visit you regardless of size. However, if you feel that you will struggle to offer a unique experience, then you can turn to general service contractor trade show experts. These contractors will be able to expertly craft a booth experience that will leave a lasting mark on consumers that visit. While downsizing may be a risk, you should always choose quality over quantity. If you’re on a budget, then having a smaller yet effective booth can be a great way to save money and free up spending in other areas.