A brand’s guide to 2023 tradeshow season

The 2023 tradeshow season is just beginning, and it’s the perfect way to start the new year by strengthening your relationships with existing clients and meeting future buyers and prospects.

With the first major tradeshows taking place at the start of the year, and another wave in the autumn, it’s a good idea to start planning ahead so that you can make the most of these events and promote your brand in the best way possible. 

At Ankorstore, we have a range of tools to help you thrive during tradeshow season and to continue to grow your business on our platform. We’re sharing our top tips below to get you started and help you navigate tradeshows with ease.  

 

Summary 

Before tradeshow season begins

During tradeshow season

After tradeshow season ends

 

Before tradeshow season begins

 

1. Prepare your marketing material 

Marketing materials such as banners, flyers, business cards, and signage is a great way to ensure your brand gets noticed at tradeshows. Use these materials to decorate your stand, promote your brand, and share key information like your logo, brand name, website address and contact details, as well as your values or your most important USPs. 

Don’t forget to include your Ankorstore Referral offer code on your marketing materials to encourage your new prospects to shop from your brand on our platform. You can find your Referral offer code by logging in to your Ankorstore account and going to the ‘My Network’ section. 

 

2. Let your retailers know where you’ll be showing 

Don’t just rely on footfall at tradeshows to keep your booth busy. Communication is one of the keys to success, so make sure you spread the word to your retailers about the tradeshows you’ll be at so that they know where and when to find you. Use the ‘Messages’ tool in your Ankorstore account to contact your retailers, or post about your tradeshow presence on social media. Don’t forget to encourage retailers and new prospects to book an appointment with you on the day. 

Boost your client list on Ankorstore by training your brand representatives about our platform before you attend a tradeshow. Make sure they’re comfortable talking about how Ankorstore works, explaining the benefits for retailers and inviting customers to your shop via your Ankorstore brand page.

 

3. Manage your stock levels

Keeping your inventory up to date during tradeshow season is important to help your retailers enjoy a seamless ordering experience with your brand. In fact, rejected orders due to stock levels cuts the chance of a retailer ordering again from a brand by 50%. You can easily update your stock via your Ankorstore account, and you can see a detailed step-by-step guide in our FAQ article here

 

4. Offer exclusive discounts

To make sure you’re offering your clients the best deals, check the prices for products in your Ankorstore shop match those on any of your other wholesale platforms. Boost your sales during tradeshow season by offering a special discount in your shop using our guide here or use our Personalised discount feature to offer your clients the same prices and benefits as buying direct.

 

During tradeshow season

 

1. Make your booth stand out

Considering your booth design and product merchandising is key to ensuring your appearance at a tradeshow is a success. Buyers and future clients will be visiting lots of booths in one day, so make sure yours is the one that they remember. Your booth is a great place to showcase your new-season collections, and you could introduce additional elements like interactive displays, product demonstrations or free samples to drive footfall to your booth. 

 

2. Use our Prepared Orders feature

Want to take orders from your clients on the spot during tradeshow season? Now you can with our Prepared Orders feature. Simply click on ‘Prepare an order’ in the ‘Prepared Orders’ section of your account, select the products and quantities your client wants to buy and send them an email link to their pre-populated basket, all your client needs to do is check out. Additionally, you can also create Prepared Orders for retailers who are not yet registered on Ankorstore. To find out more, please read our FAQ article here

 

3. Network and create a lead capture process

Tradeshows are one of the most important times to meet new prospects, strengthen relationships with existing clients and meet your peers. Having a short digital lead capture form is the best way to get the details of everyone you meet on the day so that you can contact them afterwards. Remember that the WiFi connection at tradeshows can sometimes be slow, so having a physical backup like a guest book at your booth will also ensure you keep track of all your visitors on the day. 

 

After tradeshow season ends

 

1. Update your contact list 

Being one of the first to make contact with a new prospect following a tradeshow is a great way to start a positive working relationship. Start by updating your contact list in your Ankorstore account by going to the ‘My Network’ section and then send personal messages to each of the new prospects you have met. Remember that a personal message makes all the difference and you can use your Referral offer code to invite your retailers to join Ankorstore and benefit from a voucher to use on your shop. Find out more about our Referral offer here

 

2. Track leads through the sales pipeline 

Understand the impact your presence at a tradeshow had by tracking any leads you created on the day by following their journey with your brand. Send a follow up communication if you haven’t heard back from them including a Personalised discount to help encourage conversion and take note of the products and quantities they add to their basket so you can check in with the retailer after purchase to see if they’re happy with their order. 

 

3. Measure performance and improvements

Every tradeshow you attend is another opportunity to learn something new about your customers and your brand. Having key performance indicators in place to measure the success of your attendance is a good way to understand impact and make improvements for next time. 

 

We hope you find these tools and tips useful and we look forward to seeing you thrive during the upcoming tradeshow season.


How to prepare for 2023 tradeshow season

The 2023 tradeshow is just around the corner, and these events are important for all kinds of retailers as suppliers come together to showcase their products for the new season. As an independent business owner, attending a tradeshow is a great way to see products in person before making a purchase, talk to vendors to learn about their merchandise and network with other retailers in the industry. 

We know that tradeshows can often be a busy and overwhelming experience, especially for independent retailers. That’s why we’ve put together this handy guide to help you get organised before, during and after tradeshow season. 

 

Summary

 

Before tradeshow season starts 


1. Set your goals

Ask yourself what you want to achieve by attending tradeshows this season. Are you there to find new trends, expand your product assortment, discover new vendors or network with your peers? Your answer will help you decide which tradeshows are best for you to go to and how to structure your day.

2. Plan ahead

Once you’ve chosen the tradeshows you want to attend, it’s a good idea to look at the exhibitor list online and write down the brands you want to see. Booking appointments in advance is a great way to organise your time, but make sure you leave a few slots free to meet new brands you might spot during the day.

3. Decide your route

Tradeshows are usually held in large spaces, so having a route planned is the best way to make sure you don’t miss out on anything. Most tradeshows will offer a downloadable map before the event and you can use this to decide which booths you want to visit and in what order. This will save you time walking back and forth during the day.

4. Know your numbers

As an independent retailer, you’ll want to make sure you don’t overspend at tradeshows. Make sure you have a clear idea of your top performing categories and bestsellers so you can place orders in the categories you know work best for your store.

 

On the day

 

1. Pack all the essentials

The last thing you want to do is turn up to a tradeshow and realise you’ve forgotten something important. Remember to take plenty of business cards and a one-pager with your key figures and goals so you can stay focused and on track throughout the day.

2. Aim for quieter times

Being one of the first through the door at a tradeshow will ensure you beat the crowds and get the time you need with vendors. If you aren’t able to make it in the morning, towards the end of the day is also a great chance to explore the floor with less people around.

3. Take notes and pictures

Remembering one product from another can be difficult when you’re seeing so many in a short space of time. Photographing everything you want to follow up on, taking business cards and making notes each time you stop at a booth will help remind you of what you were interested in once the event is over.

4. Use our ‘Prepared orders’ feature

Meeting with a brand who sells on Ankorstore? Ask them to use our ‘Prepared orders’ feature to create your basket on Ankorstore with your chosen products. They will then email you a link and all you need to do is check out via the Ankorstore platform. 

 

After the tradeshow

 

1. Review everything you gathered during the event

Spend some time organising your photos, notes and any business cards you picked up during the event whilst it’s still fresh in your mind. Sort out your notes into vendors you want to follow up with, those to review in the future and those to pass on to other peers who will be interested.

2. Follow up with vendors

A personal note, email or phone call following a tradeshow is a great way to start a positive working relationship. Use the ‘Messages’ feature in your Ankorstore account to keep all your brand correspondence in one place, and don’t forget that brands who sell on Ankorstore can offer you a personalised discount so you can enjoy the same benefits as buying direct. Find out more in our FAQ article here.

3. Invite brands to join Ankorstore

If you’ve found a brand that you’d love to see on Ankorstore, you can easily invite them to join us by logging in to your Ankorstore account and going to the ‘Refer brands’ section. If a brand you referred successfully joins our platform, we’ll reward you. Find out more in our FAQ article here.


4. Post about your day on social media

Remember that tradeshows are a marketing opportunity for your independent business too. Use your social media platform to post pictures or videos from the day, or film an Instagram Reels to give your followers a behind-the-scenes look at how industry events work. 

 

Meet the Ankorstore team

Our representatives will be attending Top Drawer at Olympia London from 15th – 17th January 2023 and Spring Fair at NEC Birmingham from 5th – 8th February 2023.

Email emma-michaela.brind@ankorstore.com to book an appointment.