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3 Ways to Keep Exhibitors Coming Back Year After Year

4 min read
Jul 6, 2018

Feathr is known as a great attendee acquisition tool for your events. I mean, we do bring in thousands upon thousands of attendees for our customers’ events every year. So the label is accurate. But today, let’s talk about another kind of attendee. Your exhibitors. Without them, you wouldn’t have an event. So how do you make sure they keep coming back year after year? Read on for some tips that we’ve seen be successful, no matter what kind of event you organize.

1. Custom branded collateral

Screen Recording 2018-06-26 at 02.35 PM

A custom Feathr landing page NCA built for an exhibitor. Feathr's landing pages are scalable, so it's just as easy to make 1,000 as it is to make 1!

Ideally, your exhibitors are excited to come to your event. So give them the opportunity to shout about it from the rooftops! Well, the digital rooftops, at least. Most exhibitors announce their partnership and booth number on social media. They might invite prospects or set up meetings, but you can do them (and yourself) one better. Offer them custom-branded event collateral in the form of landing pages, HTML email templates, digital banners, or all of the above. Collateral like this integrates the exhibitor’s branding with your event’s branding and provides an elegant turnkey way to promote their involvement with your event.

But it gets better. When the custom collateral features a portal through which exhibitors can register members of their digital audience, like Feathr’s Influencer Marketing module does, you get to win/win territory real quick. Exhibitors register members of their audience, ensuring better matched attendees for their products or services, and your show gains attendees it may not have earned without the outreach of your exhibitor. Even better: offer exhibitors incentives for registering attendees through their custom collateral and they’ll have more reasons to keep returning to your event. Then they’ll start asking your competitors “where’s my custom collateral?”


2. Attendee matching

Exhibitors’ #1 priority for their trip to your event is a return on their investment. They may also love your event, your organization, and the bars nearby, but without that ROI they will not keep returning. That’s why it’s important to make sure your attendees are a tailored fit for your exhibitors’ products and services. One way to play attendee-exhibitor matchmaker is by registering attendees by segmenting ads by industry vertical. Let’s say you organize an auto industry trade show. Attendees that come looking for aftermarket big block V8s aren’t likely to also be interested in the latest in fuel cell technology.

One way to ensure both kinds of exhibitors get matched with attendees that are interested in their products is to create audience segments for visitors to both types of exhibitors’ pages on your website, and then create ads specifically to appeal to those segments. By targeting lookalike audiences of those segments, your ads will be seen by new eyes, and your exhibitors will getaccess to new accounts. Another win/win.

To learn more about lookalike audiences, check out this blog post.


3. Digital Sponsorships


Examples of digital sponsorship ads. These exhibitors purchased digital sponsorships, allowing them to advertise directly to IBS attendees and website visitors.

Exhibitors love squeezing every drop of value out of their event partnerships. Traditionally, it has been difficult to accurately and quantitatively track the progress and success of their partnership with events. Digital sponsorships are immensely trackable and a major value-add for exhibitors interested in your event. Essentially, a digital sponsorship takes the concept of a traditional sponsorship and moves it online. The same principles apply, except instead of a banner in the exhibition hall, it’s a banner ad on the web pages your audience members visit. In a digital sponsorship, you offer your exhibitors the opportunity to serve ads to your show’s website traffic. That exposure to your audience is valuable to your exhibitors, and unlike convention center floor and wall space, your supply of digital sponsorships is unlimited.

Digital sponsorships can be added addition to traditional exhibitor packages, or even as a standalone offer before or after the show. That’s part of their versatility: no one will see a banner hanging in the exhibition hall after the show is over, but thousands will see it online. Past exhibitors will inevitably come to you and ask, “what’s new?” Wow them with a brand new kind of sponsorship that is trackable and earns them new prospects and revenue long after the show doors close.


So remember: happy exhibitors are repeat exhibitors. If you’re interested in trying out one or more of these ideas for your next show, Feathr wants to help. Our platform makes all of the above solutions simple and scalable. To learn how, schedule a personalized demo today!

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