As we approach Wedding Show season, we wanted to share with our fellow vendors a couple tips of what has worked really well in getting the most out of these shows, since they are quite the investment for small businesses!
Take a peek at some of our suggestions – and then comment below to share some of yours!
1) Go Paperless, Be Environmentally Friendly!
Having done shows over the last three years, there is one common thing I have heard – it’s that Brides are often bogged down by how much reading material they have to lug around all day. Not only that, but when they get home, they often throw out a good portion of the material they get anyways.
Last year we went completely paperless in terms of promotional materials. We collected email address with our iPads, through a program that links with MailChimp called ‘Chimpadeedoo’. We had our ‘Wedding Candy Brochure‘ online that we sent out to the brides a couple days after the show. It is best to do follow up with Brides a couple days after the show so that they have some time to process and reflex on all the information they heard at the show.
2) Prizing – Don’t forget about their Posse!
We all know that at these Bridal shows, the Brides want to enter some sort of giveaway at every booth. Last year, in addition to giving away a candy buffet to one lucky bride, we also capitalized on making a second giveaway something that their posse could enter as well (their bridesmaids, their mom’s. whoever was with them supporting them that day), by giving away a Candy Club Subscription.
We received good feedback from attendees that this was nice that they felt involved too – plus, these people will likely either be Brides themselves one day, or will have a good hand in influencing some of the decisions that the Bride makes, so it is good to collect their information as well.
3) Partner with other Local Businesses
Although you do have to be careful with this one – it never hurts to partner with other local businesses to enhance your booth! Make sure the businesses you are promoting are in the show as well, so that you can openly tell attendees where they are located.
It might work to partner with a décor company to have your booth decorated beautifully, a stationary expert to make sure the little details stand out, or a sweets company to help make your display more enticing!
4) Branding – make sure you’re remembered!
- Signage – use a pretty frame to make it more elegant, and hang it front and centre so that people know who you are right away!
- Memorable takeaways – if you are going to give something to the bride, make sure it is memorable. Last show we handed out our contact information, but the front page had a hand drawn design of what our booth looked like by a local artist – brides loved that they could remember where they got that information.
- Business cards – and lots of them! You’ll want to hand them out to other vendors just as much as the brides.
- Contact Form – the goal of the show is to connect with brides and get their contact information from them so that you can follow up. Make sure you are collecting all the info that you need, and have some branding on the form as well.
- Discount Codes – if you’re not doing a giveaway at your booth, another good way to collect contact info is to create a discount code for your product or service. When brides are at your booth, get them to enter your form in order for them to receive the code.
5) Do your Research – Know what other vendors will be there
The Bridal Shows are also a place for you to Network with other vendors. We suggest doing some research before the show to see which other vendors will be in attendance. Make a list of people you would like to introduce yourself too – and even a list of questions you might want to ask them. Take a peek at their website to learn a little bit more about their business.
Make sure to arrive a bit early the morning of the show, so that you can do a lap around the room and try to meet the people that you wanted to introduce yourself to. It is always better to do this at the beginning of the day, as by the end of the day, you have usually lost your voice and to be quite honest – you’re typically quite exhausted.
6) Get Involved and Get Social!
Usually prior to the Bridal show, there are many opportunities for you to get involved with the show and get your name out there even more – a lot of vendors don’t realize this.
- Shows will often give vendors a featured post on their blog, give you the opportunity to customize your directory listing on their website, and even featured some local vendors in their annual Bridal Magazine.
- As always, getting interactive on social media never hurts – help to promote the show, engage with other vendors, and follow the shows major hashtags before and during the show. Often you’ll get a chance to interact with attendees via social even before the day of the show. This will keep your business top of mind so that attendees make sure to hit up your booth the day of!
- Make sure you are posting the week leading up to the show that you will be there – that gives your audience a good heads up. Make sure that you tell them where you’ll be (booth number) and what you’ll be giving away (that never hurts to entice people). Also, remember to include the shows hashtag so that you can attract new audiences as well!
I hope this helps give you some ideas for the next show! I would love to hear what you guys do to prepare for the show – if you have any winning nuggets to share with the rest of us, please comment below!
Hope to see you all at the next one 🙂
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