As our very excited 818 Agency content team gets ready to head out to ASD Market Week to create, distribute, and run social advertising campaigns for the largest B2B merchandise trade show/retail conference in the U.S., we figured it was time to share 12 bite-size things all trade show and conference execs need to know (hint: content marketing has become essential to trade show marketing, and social channels have now become indispensable B2B tools).
Planning your next trade show? Here’s your cheat sheet:
1. Clearly Define Your Business Objectives
– attracting attendees, vendors, or sponsors?
– which segments?
2. Establish Audience Content, Channel, and Keyword Preferences
broadcast surveys (artfully and concisely written)
– 1-to-1 interviews
– keyword research
3. Develop Your Editorial Strategy, Content Creation (regular publishing to event website/blog)
– Create and publish beautiful audience-focused content (insight-driven, SEO-optimized, search-friendly)
– Packaging existing content in the proper format(s) so readers convert into customers
4. Run Paid Content Distribution Campaigns on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram (for starters)
use your ad account to create and deliver “content units” instead of ads to your audience
– boosted posts = bad (ask us why)
– promoting your page = bad (again, ask us why)
5. Start Retargeting / Website Remarketing
– content creation and distribution attracts qualified website traffic which you then can retarget on Facebook and Instagram with “direct-response” CTA ads. This is how you turn editorial content into paying customers.
6. Make sure your registration and lead-gen (i.e. “conversion”) Process is Lean and Mean
– Create Unbounce landing pages for registration and lead-generation gated content campaigns
integrates and sends data directly to most CRMs and enterprise registration systems
– High-converting (when your messaging and data are matched perfectly)
– Essential for email, FB, and PPC campaigns
7. Launch Paid Facebook, Instagram, Twitter Attendee and Vendor Acquisition Ads (required = a very clear CTA)
– to track down alumni and retention customers to register and/or renew
– efficiently acquire business prospects in the U.S. and around the world
– cost-per-conversion optimization is your friend
– use “structured ad testing” best practices
– send traffic to landing pages that allow for only one action (or use lead ads)
8. Create and Distribute Lead Generation Content (creation and distribution of “gated” content requiring customer information in exchange)
– real-time lead collection and delivery at scale
– artful, writerly, easy-to-read, useful, elegant, professional layouts
(See point #7)
9. Bring Your Content Marketing On-Site (during your event) & Increase your Attendees’ and Vendors’ ROI in the Process
– content creation (blog, video, social)
– real-time paid content distribution to attendees
– paid social advertising (geo-targeting, custom audiences)
– mobile app downloads
– daily event recaps
10. Partner With Influencers (B2B Advocate Programs)
– structured partnerships with B2B influencers to create and distribute content and drive registration
– make it trackable.
– their audience = your audience
11. Consistently Distribute Press Releases (But Focus on Content)
– promote research, gated content, and show partnerships.
– before, during, and after your events
12. Ensure Your Conversion and Content Performance Tracking + Analytics Are Set Up
– Google Analytics/GTM implementation, use UTM parameters
– conversion and remarketing pixel placement (a.k.a. the secret sauce)
Were these “tablet-worthy?” Let us know! And see you at the next trade show.
By Jed Wexler
CEO, Director of Editorial and Conversion Strategy, 818 Agency