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Using the Big Screen to Attract Prospects at a Tradeshow

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Big screens sell, and I’m not talking about retail. If you’ve ever been to a tradeshow or conference, you know that booths with big screens are more likely to attract viewers.

This is true for two reasons:

  • Images attract people, plain and simple.
  • Large screens allow prospects to find out who you are without the discomfort of getting too close. If they like what they see, they’ll come closer.

Problem: Your budget may not support that kind of overhead.

Solution: Rent what you need. There are companies that rent out trade show displays, like LED and LCD display screens, to other businesses. You can rent these for as long as you like, and the company will usually also offer technical services to help you get it hooked up. But make sure to ask the company to see if they offer the service.

Once you have your display screen, though, how do you use it? Here are five tips to make sure you maximize its use to attract the audience you want.

Entertain 60% of the time and inform 40% of the time.

Remember that the display screen is your hook; you want to use it to attract people. Striking the right balance between entertainment and information is the key to doing this. Entertainment is what will attract someone’s attention, but without telling them what your company does they’ll just walk away afterward. The information gives them that push to approach your booth.

So what does this balance look like? Think of every great commercial or advertisement you’ve seen – something that entertained you and made you want to know more about the product or the company. Try to emulate that. Use the entertainment as a vehicle for your information without overselling your product or company.

Position the screens for maximum exposure.

This probably means you need at least two screens. For example, if you’re positioned in the middle of a hallway or aisle, this allows one screen to point left and the other right. Additionally, your screens should be high enough that people can see them from about 20 feet away. Put the screens above eye level.

Finally, call ahead to make sure you’ll have the information you need to hook up your screens. You do not want to arrive at the event to discover you can’t use your screens.

Create a conversion plan.

Don’t be the awesome trailer promoting a sucky movie. You’ve seen those, right? It’s that awesome trailer in the theater that has all the best parts of the movie in it. Don’t put all your best stuff up on the screen. Create a plan that gives the prospect more information when they approach your booth. Ideally you should just flip your ratios: 60% information and 40% entertainment. This allows you to still connect with your prospect while transitioning them into learning more about why your product or company matters.

Test your transition speed.

If you’re using slides with auto-transitions, take time to read through every slide. You should be able to read everything on the slide and then have about three seconds to spare. This will make sure it’s not so slow that people get bored and walk away while keeping it slow enough that people can still get through the information.

Practice with the technology before the event.

Let’s say you get to the event and want to show off a company video on a whim. Will you know how to work the technology in order to make that happen? Practice these scenarios before you get put on the spot. Nothing kills conversion momentum like a technology SNAFU that could have been prevented with some initial practice.

Have other tips? Share them in the comments below, but make sure to explain how and why to implement your tip!

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