Conferences and trade shows are often the most exciting events of the year. They bring in tons of business, they provide awesome venues for marketing your products and services, and they’re a great opportunity for you to make meaningful connections in your business.
If you want to get the most out of them, you need to have a plan in place well ahead of time for advertising your products or services. That means paper collateral such as business cards and one-sheets, pitches about your goods, and promo items such as laminated bags.
Today, let’s focus on that last item. Believe it or not, reusable bags get more impressions than almost any other marketing tactic, and that includes time-honored traditional ones such as radio spots, tee shirts and billboards. If you want to make sure you really nail the details, here are eight ways to use laminated bags at conferences and trade shows.
Order Well Ahead of Time
It’s surprising how fast a big event such as a conference or trade show can sneak up on you. With the daily demands of running an office or shop, you can fall behind without knowing it, especially when you add in the stresses of travel and sales.
To avoid getting bogged down and forgetting to bring your laminated bags with you, make sure you order well ahead of time. As soon as you have the conference scheduled, design your bags, keeping in mind:
- Your brand colors and logo
- Your business name
- A motto or tagline that represents both your business and the focus of the conference
- Products or services you’re advertising
- Photography that furthers your purpose at the conference (for instance, to showcase new projects)
Once you have all these elements in place, speak with a designer or reusable bag expert to help you put them all in place. Then order, giving yourself at least 6 weeks of lead time. While most bag companies will get your shipment to you well ahead of the deadline, you want wiggle room in case the bags aren’t what you expected or something goes wrong in shipping.
Match Your Booth and Bags
The most attractive booths at trade shows are the ones whose presence seems completely streamlined. The canopy matches the tablecloths, which matches the posters, which matches the tabletop swag and the giveaway items.
In your case, make sure you match your laminated bags to all the rest. Or, if you’ve ordered your bags well ahead of time, the reverse might be true. In that case, you’ll want to print business cards and pamphlets that highlight the imagery on your bags, so that they complement it perfectly. Use bunting, posters and promos (say, water bottles or pens) that recall the colors as well.
Use Them for Swag
Bags are good for more than holding swag, however. They can also be the swag themselves. In today’s fast-paced world, everyone loves having reusable bags in the back of the car, so feel free to give them out to one and all. With 6,000 impressions per lifetime, each bag you send out into the world is doing overtime when it comes to marketing your good name, so don’t hold back.
Use Them for Decoration
Beautiful laminated bags make great decoration. With their bright imagery, deep dyes and sturdy stitching, they’re as eye-catching as anything else you’re likely to bring to a conference. For that reason, they make excellent decoration at all events. Lay in a supply both at the booth (keeping extra bags under the table until needed) as well as in your vehicle, so you can replenish them whenever you start to run out. Some ways to use bags for decoration include:
- Filling them (see below)
- Hanging them from hooks along your canopy
- Spreading them out along the table
- Wearing them over your shoulder
- Hanging them from the front of your booth’s tables
Hand Out to Clients and Prospects
One of the most obvious ways to put your bags to use at conferences and trade shows is to hand them out to clients and prospects. Some people make the mistake of doing this on too limited a basis, however. They’ll only hand their bags out to strong prospects, or to people they’ve never met before, or only to buyers and not partners. Don’t take that approach! Instead, hand them out to one and all so everyone gets a piece of the action.
Fill your laminated bags ahead of time for a truly professional effect. Keep a supply of promotional materials on hand, including:
- Paper items
- Promo items
Then, make a few bags at a time by filling them with the above items, and hand them out to customers as they walk up to your booth. If possible, get a booth by the front door or along a main aisle. This increases your chances of getting people right when they come into the trade show, which makes it likelier that they’ll take your bag and flash it all around the conference for the rest of the day.
Carry Them Around
Or you can carry your bags around yourself. Whenever you move about the conference, shaking hands or getting a hot dog, make sure to carry one of your bags with you. Just like when you’re out in the world and earning impressions, you’ll also attract attention to your brand inside the convention center or hotel as well. That makes it more likely that prospects or potential business partners will come up to you and want to learn more about your business.
Give Yourself a Green Vibe
Today, the world has gotten much wiser to plastic. Many locations around the world now ban plastic partially or completely, while a variety of approaches now exist for making your company’s footprint just a bit lighter. You can do your part by making reusable bags accessible to your customers, clients and prospects at trade shows and elsewhere.
Not only do the bags reduce the number of plastic and paper bags going into oceans and landfill, they also provide a nice ecological patina to your business. Considering how affordable they are and their amazing ROI – more than 1,000 brand impressions per dollar – they’re an all-around good idea.
Want to give your trade show marketing plan a boost today? You can by calling us at 877.334.5323 and talking to an account rep today. We can’t wait to learn more about you, your business, and your plans, after which our friendly team of experts will be happy to help you craft the perfect advertising plan. All you have to do is get in touch, so don’t wait any longer … call today.