Prepare for Your Tradeshow with this Handy Checklist

Prepare for Your Tradeshow with this Handy Checklist

Preparing for a tradeshow and finding the right promotional items to give away (like custom tote bags, bottle openers, or stationery) can be an overwhelming experience, but it doesn’t have to be. With some planning assistance and information, exhibiting at a trade show can be a huge success without the headache. Here, check out our 5 steps to ensure that your next tradeshow and booth designing is a complete success.

If your company is planning to exhibit at a tradeshow, you've got a lot of planning to do. Successful events depend on careful, strategic preparation, and there's no room for procrastination in such highly competitive environments. The following tradeshow checklist will help you create a seamless event that boosts brand awareness.

Step 1: Create a Strategy

Ensure a more focused event by taking the following key steps:

  • Set goals and objectives (make sales, get leads, recruit talent, network with industry leaders).
  • Create custom tote bag design options.
  • Create a manageable budget.
  • Identify your target audience
  • Create a marketing plan for before, during and after the tradeshow
  • Choose a show that's consistent with your customer's profile.
  • Book your space.
  • Design your exhibit, including layout, displays and graphics.
  • Begin browsing for promotional products.

  • Step 2: Start Planning (3-6 months before)

    As the big day approaches, you need to start doing your tradeshow prep:

  • Book a block of hotel rooms near the event facility.
  • Prepare your literature and marketing materials.
  • Choose relevant promotional products and order them in advance. For example, your custom tote bag designs not only create brand awareness but also increase product engagement for your customers 
  • Begin your pre-show marketing: Send out your press releases.
  • Send your booth info to attendees. Leverage social media to make your presence known.

  • Step 3: Perfect Your Plan (1-3 months before)

    Now that you've built some momentum, it's time to finalize your plans:

  • Prepare follow-up materials you can send out right after the show
  • Make all of your travel arrangements
  • Train all the members of your booth staff.
  • Touch base with the event sponsor and gather any last-minute details.
  • Schedule meetings with customers, clients or prospects
  • Increase employee satisfaction by gifting custom tote bags.
  • Finalize production on booth displays and marketing materials.
  • Make sure you have enough promotional items to meet high demand.

  • Step 4: Pack and Prepare (1-4 weeks before)

    As the big day approaches, make sure you fine-tune everything:

  • Safely package and pack all of your booth equipment.
  • Hand out a master contacts list to key members of your team.
  • Create cheat-sheets and checklists for setup and conversation starters.
  • Perform a little role-playing to get your staff prepared for interactions

  • Step 5: Execute Your Plan (day of the tradeshow)

    If you've got all your ducks in a row, your event should run smoothly. Take these steps to promote greater success:

  • Ensure all your products, custom tote bags; backpacks, etc. are presented for display to market to customers.
  • Smile and greet visitors with warm, friendly speech
  • Trade business cards or badge scans when opportunities present themselves.
  • Interact with prospects to learn about their wants and needs.
  • Make detailed notes for post-show follow-ups

With these five steps, your next tradeshow exhibit will be a success. Not only will you alleviate stress but also your booth designs are guaranteed to sell. Simply create a strategy, start planning, perfect your plan, pack and prepare, and lastly, execute your plan.

Ready to explore your options for custom tote bags and other promotional items? Browse our collections here at Bagmasters, or contact us with any questions!

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