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How to Develop Customer Awareness & Enhance It through Visiting Trade Fairs?
You can’t be in business, unless you sell products and you can’t sell products without having your customers know you exist. If you’ve picked up one thing from the series of articles we’ve posted the last couple of months, then you know that one of the biggest things a brand need to survive is a good presence in the lives of their client base. Brand awareness in this hyper-paced life ranks at the top as a prerequisite for success, and we’re going to tackle how to develop an awareness among your customers both online and offline.
Creating Customer Awareness in an Online World
The Internet is not a newfangled concept. No matter how small your enterprise is, you have picked up on essential online advertising practices that work best in your favor to help you connect with prospective buyers and maintain the attention of already existing customers. Nevertheless, we’re about to give you a refresher course:
Social Media: Yes, it’s first because it’s the most obvious tool at your disposal to increase overall visibility and engage with customers in fun ways. But what can you do differently and better? We want to impress that not every platform will work for your business and what products you offer. Identify the platform that works best for you and put the biggest effort there. It really helps to be a company with a personality. Take for instance how cheeky Netflix, Wendy’s and MoonPie are on their day-to-day Twitter accounts. Develop a strategy, where you can incorporate some of that into your branding. If you’re selling directly to end consumers, partner up with current influencers to showcase your products.
Guest Blogging: Social media is for emotional connection and creating desire. Content is for the creation of value. Customers want a brand that creates value for them, and if you have expertise in a field and can greatly improve the lives of end consumers and/or specialists, then you should be developing content to be published on reputable sites. One way to approach this is to write posts for LinedIn through their Publishing Tool in order to establish a reputation for yourself amongst your peers, rivals and potential prospects as a knowledgeable and competent source. Another way to gain traction online is through appearing on podcasts, which have gained significant popularity.
Classic Ads & SEO: Although not as exciting, never underestimate the impact low-key, frequent exposure to your brand through ads and on search results page can have on bringing new clients to your database. The Google AdSense auto ads tool is a godsend in this regard and will help you optimize the entire process to best target your audience. Speaking of optimization, it can be tough to know everything there is to know about SEO (after all, Google’s algorithms are a riddle), but you should adopt some of the basic tenants – have a fast and intuitive website, learn your keywords, strive for unique content, and know where your competition ranks.
We can write a book on online strategies to bring customer awareness to your company online, but that is not the point of this article. It’s about discussing how having online and offline presence is important to cultivate, and what the fundamental difference is between them. We need online tools, because if a customer can’t find you through a Google search or be reminded of your brand, then you might as well not exist. Online presence is all about setting a baseline. Offline presence is the creation of a personal connection and deepening your presence in customers’ lives.
There are many ways to foster offline customer awareness, but we will be focusing on attending trade fair and exhibitions, because that’s where we’ve seen them work best and give you the most comprehensive list of tools at your disposal. In fact, investing in business travel as a means of offline advertising (although expensive) gives you the most multi-faceted impact. What’s even better. Having a strong online presence will only amplify your offline presence during the event, which then results in feeding your online presence even more. That’s the balance you’re looking for on a bigger scale.
What can you hope to gain from trade fairs?
Word of Mouth: Nothing is more valuable than word of mouth in marketing. You can have the best website and the biggest billboards in the land, but if no one cares about your products, it’s as good as money thrown to the wind. Trade fairs allow you to bring products to prospective buyers and create a sense memory through having them use it. Many events will have demo areas, which is where you need to position yourself. Proof of your quality is in the performance. Another way to spread the word is through branded freebies. With the right selection of giveaway items, you’re in a position to gain visibility through the people that stop by your booth.
Conferences: Exhibitions and trade fairs have an informational/education program, which is your opportunity to meet up with thought leaders and taste makers on a higher level in your niche. Do not underestimate how valuable B2B connections can be in developing customer awareness later on. These connections can result in official partnerships with other companies that strengthen the market penetration of both through the appeal of cross-sales. You can also find out how you can involve yourself as an official sponsor for a different event, or even receive sponsorship yourself. The stronger your professional connections in your field are, the more secure your brand becomes.
Leads: It all comes down to gaining sales leads from prospect buyer, but not just their contact info – it’s deeper understanding of your core target audience. Trade fairs allows you to meet face to face with the people who buy your products or use your services. Talk with your existing clients to better understand what makes your product successful, and talk to prospect buyers about what they need. What are the problems they’re trying to solve that your brand can fix? You will gain a much detail customer profile and that deepened knowledge will inform you on how to alter course on social media and online tools. Pro tip: do not forget your business cards!
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