Over a period of 18 months, engaged couples in the U.S. will spend approximately £118 billion on their weddings, including the ceremonies, receptions and honeymoons. Many bridal professionals rely on wedding trade shows as a way to reach this multibillion dollar market, and chances are, there will be several vendors who provide the same type of service at each show. Creative booth ideas for a wedding trade show will help a vendor stand out from the pack and maximise return on investment.
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One way to attract attention to a booth at a trade show is to have one or two large display pieces. Any attractive visual item that showcases a vendor’s work is sure to draw interest. Popular booth ideas for a wedding trade show include a large bouquet of flowers for florists, a fake or “dummy” cake for bakers, a poster on an easel featuring a popular honeymoon destination for travel agents or a small television or computer playing a wedding DVD for a photographer or videographer. Floor-standing trade show booth displays also make a big impact.
It is crucial to give each bride who visits your booth something with your contact information printed on it so that she can reach you after the show. The most popular handout items are brochures and business cards, but many vendors will also distribute coupons or flyers with special offers for wedding trade show attendees. Another idea many vendors use to stand out from the crowd is to give brides promotional items imprinted with the company logo and contact information. Popular imprinted promotional items include pens, key chains, magnets and plastic bags, to hold all of the brochures the brides will collect throughout the day.
Samples will help brides get an idea of the style and quality of a vendor’s work at a wedding trade show. Musicians, disc jockeys, photographers and videographers may hand out sample DVDs showcasing their work, while bakers may opt to hand out small samples of their best-selling cake. Department stores trying to promote their registry services may hand out wooden spoons or other small kitchen gadgets. Travel agents specialising in tropical honeymoons can give brides a taste of the tropics with small cups of virgin pina coladas or margaritas, or hand out small packets of sunscreen imprinted with their contact information.
Most wedding trade shows will supply a six-foot table with the booth, which a vendor may or may not use. If used, it is a good idea to keep the tabletop clutter free. Appropriate items for the tabletop include handouts, one or two business card holders filled with business cards, a candy dish filled with wrapped candy and one or two decorative items or display pieces if appropriate. Another way to display your work in a small amount of space is to set up a laptop computer with a continually running slide show of your portfolio, like outstanding bridal bouquets, unique wedding cakes, or scenes from popular vacation destinations. Wedding venues like hotels and catering halls can display scenes from some of their most successful ceremonies and receptions.
The whole point of having a booth at a wedding trade show is to make new contacts. Don’t let them get away! Ask each bride who visits the booth to fill out an information sheet with her contact information. This will allow you to follow up with your new contacts promptly after the event. Items to help with this include pens, clipboards, pre-printed information sheets and a box to hold the completed information sheets. Offering a prize drawing may provide an incentive for brides to fill out the information sheets.
If budget allows, a large floor-standing prize wheel will surely attract attention to your booth at a wedding trade show. This is also a popular way to capture brides’ contact information--offer every bride who completes an info sheet an opportunity to spin the wheel. Prizes could include inexpensive to moderately-priced items like a branded tote bag or travel mug, bottle of wine or gift token.
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