As the Covid-19 pandemic subsides and attendees regain their work schedules, trade shows are making a comeback; and with appropriate technology they’re even thriving!
Planners and exhibitors need to provide trade show attendees with something they cannot find elsewhere – that means using technologies for creating immersive, customized experiences.
1. More Personalized Experiences
Experiences tailored specifically for attendees have become an increasing priority as technology develops. Augmented reality (AR) allows you to display virtual product samples or give virtual demonstrations that will capture their interest, making an unforgettable impression on them.
Chatbots and virtual assistants can also provide instantaneous assistance to visitors, answering their inquiries and leading them towards exhibits or events they need.
Data analytics can also help create tailored communications that resonate with your target audience. For instance, behavioral data can be used to notify individuals that you’ll be at a booth they might find appealing or set meetings with specific attendees – all helping maximize return on investment (ROI) while creating a more tailored experience and memorable visits that keep people returning again and again.
2. Immersive Experiences
Immersive experiences continue to gain in popularity at trade shows as digital hardware and software advances lead to innovations. According to Gensler, Hologram Slot Machine is one example of immersive booth design allowing visitors to engage with products or services from companies more intimately. When activated by visitors pulling a virtual lever they are taken through various options or answers about those products or services offered by companies.
Holograms offer many innovative uses in business settings, from video displays that interact with attendees directly to product demos that allow attendees to touch, feel and use. The key is providing an experience that captures attendees’ imagination by employing multisensory engagement strategies such as music, scent and games to engage them fully.
3. Data-Driven Marketing
Through data analytics, exhibitors are using personalized events and experiences for attendees. Utilizing techniques like gamification, polling and interactive content creation they are gaining insights into attendees’ interests and needs.
Personalization extends beyond event personalization to lead capture. Exhibitors can quickly collect attendee information while categorizing leads for follow up by using QR codes, RFID technology, or mobile apps – or all three – and quickly collect attendee information through quick data capture methods like QR codes or RFID technology or mobile apps.
Many exhibitors are now turning to blockchain technology in order to guarantee transparency and trust with attendees at trade shows featuring artworks or collectibles; it provides an tamper-proof record of provenance for each piece, which further strengthens industry credentials as an authentic marketplace.
4. Hybrid Approaches
Sustainability initiatives aside, trade shows are also seeing increased push towards adopting advanced tech. From virtual product demos to AI-driven networking recommendations, advanced tech can improve brand performance and draw in more attendees to your booth.
Virtual elements add another level of accessibility and engagement at physical trade shows without increasing costs; with more buyers participating, sales potential increases accordingly.
Hybrid trade shows are an economical alternative, providing a more manageable cost structure with venue spaces, food, lodging, travel arrangements and setup expenses being reduced significantly. Gallup’s hybrid event combined in-person sessions with online ones to reach an international audience from Toledo or Timbuktu simultaneously and enable attendees from both places to participate.
As global awareness for sustainable practices grows, exhibition industry professionals are taking notice. Sustainability is more than a passing trend: it should be part of your overall business strategy that shows your attendees that you care for their needs as well as protecting our planet.
Adopting green initiatives such as energy-saving technologies and reusable materials in booth construction can result in cost savings for exhibitors. Furthermore, sustainable practices may qualify your event for grants and rebates to offset additional expenses.
Organizers can promote sustainability at trade shows by offering airport shuttle service or encouraging participants to travel by train instead of plane. Booth waste and transportation emissions contribute significantly to a show’s carbon footprint; by addressing these issues directly, organizers can reduce its environmental impact substantially.