Science tradeshows are one of the best places to network with your peers and generate dynamic new leads.
But it takes more than simply setting up a booth and waiting for interested attendees to line up.
Exhibiting at a life science tradeshow is not a passive exercise; it’s a proven marketing tactic that can result in significant growth for your science organization.
Forma has been helping companies put their best foot forward at tradeshows since 1987. If you’re ready to start shaking hands and exchanging business cards, check out our tips below!
Don’t hesitate to explore our Tradeshows and Event Planning service page to learn more about how the life science experts at Forma can help you expand your brand footprint and net you new business.
Tip #1) Start Planning in Advance
A successful tradeshow exhibition requires careful planning months in advance. Marketing collateral, print materials, and travel logistics are definitely not things you want to leave until the last minute.
Identify which shows you want to attend months (or better yet, a year) in advance, and start developing roadmaps for what it will take in order to make a splash.
Tip #2) Actively Engage with Attendees
You need your most dynamic, knowledgeable employees on the frontlines of your tradeshow exhibition. They need to be experts on your products as well as your brand.
Don’t just stand there with your hands in your pockets! Catch people’s attention, start conversations, and identify exactly how you can help them with their business needs.
Tip #3) Take Notes on Who You Talk To
Unless you’re lucky enough to have a photographic memory, there’s a high chance you won’t be able to remember every nuance of every conversation with every prospect you meet. This is why it’s important to take notes on who you have conversations with.
Taking notes will help you remember the context of your conversations long after the conference doors have closed. Pay special attention to:
- Company name and title
- What they liked about your product or service
- Timeline or budget details
These tidbits of information will help you qualify prospects and lay the groundwork for future conversations.
Tip #4) Always Be Prepared
It’s easy to overlook the minor details when prepping for a life science tradeshow, but sometimes they can make (or break) your tradeshow experience.
Here’s a short checklist of things to keep in mind when planning for an exhibition:
- Always remember to wear comfortable shoes.
- Keep a water bottle on you to help you stay hydrated.
- Eat healthy foods to keep your energy up (but not at your booth).
- Bring enough business cards to last for the entire tradeshow.
- If you have to take a phonecall, step outside the exhibition area.
Tip #5) Engage with the Event on Social Media
Nearly every industry tradeshow will have a social media feed where they post updates, promote hashtags, and interact with attendees. If you want to make a good impression, it’s crucial that you join the conversation.
If you attend a workshop or presentation, tag the host with a post of your own. Always make sure to use the tradeshow hashtags in order to maximize engagement. There are so many ways to leverage social media to expand your brand footprint, and tradeshow interactions are one of the best.
Tip #6) Don’t Forget to Follow Up
All the business cards in the world are useless if you don’t have a plan to actually follow up with the prospects that gave them to you.
A good first step is to develop an email campaign based around your tradeshow exhibit. Thank them for stopping by, add a few details from your notes, and ask if they’re free for a conversation sometime the following week.
Whether you use an email campaign or not, it’s imperative that you keep the conversation going.
If you’d like to learn more about how Forma has helped companies nail their life science tradeshows, start a conversation today with our expert strategists!