Booth Staff and Technology Drive Trade Show Leads

There is a new approach to the old standby when it comes to the rules of engagement for trade show booths. While it is still key to pitch and vet trade show attendees to secure leads, attendee expectations are rising. It is not as simple as greeting attendees and giving a strong sales pitch in order to secure lead generation information or close deals.

How many times have you had an interest in stopping by a booth at a trade show, but diverted your route to avoid a wall of eager sales reps? An aggressive sales strategy can not only hinder booth interactions with trade show attendees, but may also have attendees avoiding your booth altogether.

With 85 percent of a company’s trade show success dependent on the performance of booth staff members, we often share with clients that having well-trained staff is a top rule of engagement for implementing a passive booth strategy. Well-trained staff members can help increase ROI. They know the importance of how to effectively engage with attendees, including standing with a relaxed and open posture to welcome attendees to step inside the booth, minimizing time spent talking to other staff, only engaging with attendees when they are less than six feet away, and waiting for the moment when an attendee makes eye contact to greet him or her with an open-response question.

In addition to having well-trained staff members to engage with attendees, the increasing presence in technology is also playing a role in the successful execution of passive booth engagement strategies. Having some form of technology within a booth is the second rule of engagement that we often share with clients looking to implement a passive booth strategy.

Attendees naturally respond to the presence technology-enabled activities within a booth, which allows a company to create an inviting environment that ultimately draws attendees in. Building a passive engagement strategy with experiential technology at its foundation is a tactic being used by many of today’s top brands. Some examples of experiential technology include:

  • Touchscreen Kiosks. Touchscreen kiosks are a simple way to incorporate interactivity within a booth. Kiosk content can be used for lead generation surveys, a hub for digital product information, product demo videos, customer case studies, etc. Touchscreen kiosks are a great way to passively capture lead generation information and a tool to spark conversations between booth staff and attendees.
  • Interactive Presentations. Enhancing presentations with audience polling, animations, and multi-touch displays is a great way to attract and engage attendees within the booth.
  • Virtual Reality. Branded virtual reality experiences are gaining popularity as interactive ways to generate booth buzz and immerse attendees in a highly entertaining way.
  • Video/Social Media Walls. Video and/or social media walls with branded visual effects are often a more eye-catching tactic than the standard booth graphic. Think: product videos, customer testimonials, and live social media streams. Branded video and/or social media walls provide a simple way to draw in and engage attendees from a direct or even subliminal level.

At Martino Flynn, we work with our clients to develop a custom trade show marketing mix to meet their lead generation goals. For more information about Martino Flynn’s trade show marketing capabilities, contact Chelsea Metzger at cmetzger@martinoflynn.com or give us a call at 585.421.0100.

Three Consumer Trends Affecting FSI Marketing Strategies

Current consumer trends are driving financial service institutions (FSIs) to adapt their service offerings and evolve their marketing strategies. Three trends in particular have been identified as major drivers of change when it comes to FSI marketing:

Growing Wealth of Generation Y

With Generation Y (or Millennials) surpassing Baby Boomers to become the largest group of consumers, FSIs are recognizing that this generation has more spending power than ever. In fact, Millennial spending power is dictating a whole set of its own trends in relation to banking.

As Millennials gain more investable assets, they look to their chosen FSIs to provide education and advice on a variety of topics, such as applying for a mortgage, selecting insurance policies, and investing for retirement. This creates an opportunity for FSIs to engage Gen Y’ers through marketing communications.

Since Generation Y members prefer to do a majority of their banking online (and other generations have begun to adopt the same preferences), many FSIs are expanding their online and mobile product offerings, and spending budgets on increasing functionality for all online and mobile solutions. This brings us to our next trend.

Consumer Demand for Online & Mobile Banking Solutions

Online and Mobile Banking continue to grow in popularity among all customer age groups. Since online banking portals and mobile apps have become a standard expectation, banking customers now demand more functionality for these options as well.

We also know that electronic banking customers expect industry innovation. Offerings like voice-activated mobile banking transactions, express banking kiosks, and alerts for everything from over-drafting to low loan rates are attractive to electronic banking customers who already are utilizing their FSI’s technology.

As more customers accept these technology-driven banking methods as standard, FSIs must continuously market their online and mobile product offerings to remain relevant. It stands to reason that a larger allocation of FSI marketing budgets would go toward advertising these solutions in an effort to retain current customers and capture new prospects’ attention.

Yet, while banking customers continue to express interest in electronic banking, they’re also sensitive to the security of these technological solutions.

Customer Perception of Lack of Security

As the number of banking customers using online and mobile banking technology increases, so do concerns about information security. Even though FSIs have continued to provide better measures for protecting customers’ security (e. g., thumbprint and voice access to mobile bank accounts, and use of emojis and images in bank PINs and passwords, etc.), consumer perception of lack of security is a large barrier to adoption of electronic banking methods.

FSIs can mitigate this consumer perception by providing more marketing communications surrounding their approach to the topic of security. With ongoing communication about security upgrades, FSIs will appeal to banking customers who are still leery of the online and mobile technology, and provide peace of mind to those who already utilize these banking methods.

FSIs can leverage Gen Y’s spending power, the consumer preference for electronic banking solutions, and the desire for more robust security, turning these trends into marketing opportunities. And, as individual institutions recognize and adjust their marketing strategies to accommodate these trends, they will continue to maintain and convert banking customers.

For more information on Martino Flynn’s category expertise, visit our financial services capabilities page.

The Financial Brand, 2016 State of Financial Marketing, February 2016

MINTEL, Financial Services Trends 2016, January 2016

MINTEL, The Future of Banking in the U.S., January 2015

MINTEL, Mobile Banking – US, January 2015

The Official Blog of Martino Flynn