The Trade Group’s Marketing Director, Stephanie Chavez, was so impressed by the insight Todd Simon shared at a recent seminar, she invited him to Dallas to share his presentation at TTG’s December Lunch and Learn. Simon, Chief Marketing Technologist of Perfect Pitch Productions, is also an educator for EXHIBITOR Magazine’s Certified Trade Show Marketer (CTSM) accreditation program.
In his “Matching Message and Media: Integrating Presentation, Content Delivery and Technology” seminar, Simon highlighted the importance of message placement and delivery in the trade show environment. He also explained how technology – which is constantly evolving – fits into the equation.
Below, you’ll find a few key takeaways from the presentation.
An effective messaging strategy starts with breaking through distractions
One of the key points Simon covered early on was a challenge many trade show and event managers face: How to move prospects from the attention to the concentration phase.
“Getting a prospect’s attention is very easy. You can put a fire eater at the corner of your booth and everyone will notice. But getting conversion into concentration is really hard to do due to distractions that are prevalent in trade show environments. The cell phone is the biggest distraction of all,” said Simon.
In order to break through the distractions, Simon provided L&L attendees guidance on how to create messaging strategies that attract the right type of prospects, while dissuading people who would never become a buyer from even entering their trade show booth. As Simon explained, “Any time you spend time with people who won’t do business with you is a waste of money.”
So how do you get people to hear beyond the white noise and not grab for their phones? Simon provided four actionable imperatives for the group to consider:
- Know your audience. Do your research – demographics, likes, dislikes, etc. – so you can create a compelling message that will draw them into your booth and convert.
- Know your engagement steps. What steps do prospects need to take to move smoothly and quickly from attention through conversion?
- Test your conversion process. Run your own people through the process to find out if it’s effective. “If you have a beautiful booth and a terrible message, you won’t get the results you want,” Simon said.
- Know your competition. Simon recommends walking the trade shows you attend to see what your competition is doing right, doing wrong and the type of prospects they are attracting.
L&L attendees also learned how and where to place messages for maximum exposure in four key spots: View upon entering the venue, street view, house view and floor view. From an exhibit design perspective, Simon encouraged attendees to think about what steps they can take to control the space so their message resonates in and around their booths.
Stay on top of technology to deliver relevant content in an engaging fashion
According to Simon, technology is changing so quickly, he needs to update his presentation several times a year. He also touted the importance of using interactive tools. As Simon explained, “If you give people something they can play with, that’s going to stick. It’s going to pull them in, get the engagement process going and convert them from awareness to concentration – which is what you want.”
During the presentation, Simon also shared how specific technology has evolved and shared examples of recent trends in several tech categories. Here’s a sampling:
- Computers and tablets. Keep an eye on voice integration and take advantage ubiquitous networks.
- Look for more data storage, projectors in a variety of new shapes and projection mapping on floors, walls and ceilings.
- They’re getting bigger, lighter, curvier, 3-D and flexible with higher resolutions available than ever before.
- Interactive technology. Today’s interactives encourage engagement and the willingness to share data. Look for dimensional surfaces that allow people to do something fun and/or gather the information THEY want, WHEN they want it.
- Presentation pushing technology is getting smarter and becoming hyper-relevant, while providing insightful data.
- RFID hardware. Plan to track your prospects, deliver relevant content on the spot and gather loads of data, thanks to RFID wristbands, badges and smart cards. Check out our Riot Games Riftwalk case study to learn more about RFID and how it works.
- Messaging software. Linear slide presenters (like PowerPoint) will decline while dynamic content presenters that provide relevant content on demand will thrive.
Simon also addressed key trends and pros and cons of advanced media and messaging – from simulators to augmented, virtual and mixed reality experiences. These evolving forms of media and messaging tools offer varying levels of immersiveness – from the physical immersion of a simulator, to the complete immersion realized during a virtual reality experience.
Mixed reality – a combination of a real environment, augmented reality, augmented virtuality and a virtual environment – is growing in popularity. You’ll find it being used everywhere from interactive product content management to military training applications to theme parks like Six Flags.
Looking to the future – future trends that is
In closing, Simon offered some sage advice: “If you’re not thinking about creating immersive experiences then you’re missing the boat. It’s not going to be just about monitors or projecting something on the wall anymore, people will continue to expect more.”
He also described what we can expect not only in trade show environments but in our personal lives. Holodecks – projected avatars – will become more prevalent, as will experiences that the user controls while providing instant feedback.
Hardware will become smaller, more integrated and interactive. It will also come with friendlier interfaces. Simon expects keyboards to go the way of the dinosaur in the not too distant future.
Finally, there is the ever-evolving Internet of Things (IoT). “Every physical item produced by 2025 will have a chip planted into it. Your fridge will be able to tell you what you can cook based on what’s inside it and be able to tell the oven to turn on,” Simon said. He also believes bio integration – tech implanted in our bodies – will definitely become a “thing.”
Ready to attract, interact, immerse and engage your prospects?
Contact us. The Trade Group specializes in creating experiences that check all of the boxes above. Yep, we’ve got the technology goods. Just give us a call at 800-343-2005 to learn more.
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