Although the Seafood Expo North America show took place during one of Boston’s infamous ‘nor’easter’ snowstorms last month, in the seafood industry, there was no better time to shine.

By all accounts, the Boston Seafood Show is an incomparable marketplace for reaching seafood buyers and processors in the U.S. and North American market. More than 20,000 buyers and suppliers of all things seafood, from products to equipment and services were under one roof at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center for one of the world’s largest exhibitions in the industry.

As visitors walked the Boston Convention Center’s seemingly endless rows of booths and displays, they saw many of the things that one might expect at a seafood show — especially lots and lots of delicious seafood samples. Mmmm….who doesn’t love fresh, free samples? They were everywhere!

Boston Seafood Show

Wallace Bay Oysters from the seaside town of Wallace, Nova Scotia …named for William Wallace of Braveheart!

Seafood Show

A welcome treat – ice cold beer and Bruce’s Beach House of Washington

Seafood Show

A selection of seafood from the Florida ‘panhandle’…

Seafood Expo

A selection of Japanese seafood from one of the many Asian exhibitors

Experiential Marketing on the Tradeshow Floor

But perhaps the most exciting thing about the Seafood Show were the numerous exhibitor displays created to entice attendees to their booths to offer an experience like no other. The great thing about tradeshows is the unique opportunity it provides for prospective clients to interact with an exhibitor’s brand face-to-face. In today’s digital age, this opportunity for ‘experiential marketing’ is priceless. Experiential marketing invites the audience to participate and experience your products or services in a memorable way.

Check out these fantastic examples:

Seafood Show

This specialty bike sparked intrigue in many attendees

Seafood Show

This big fish surely served as an icebreaker to get conversations started…

Seafood Show

The largest lobster we have ever seen!

Seafood Show

Show-stopping (and attendee stopping) displays

Seafood Show

Have you ever seen a catfish this big?

Seafood Show

How about a gigantic mechanical polar bear with flashing eyes to promote a seafood refrigeration company?

Top Tradeshow Tips from the Boston Seafood Show

According to reports from participating partners, most of the companies that attracted high quality customer groups shared the following characteristics:

1. Size does matter! But so does location and layout…
Some spaces on the show floor literally guarantee a busy booth. A large booth in the wrong space may get less traffic than a small booth positioned on a corner or near an entrance or activity section of an exposition hall. Do your research before you book your space.

2. Pre-event marketing sets you up for success. Start drawing visitors before the show even begins.
Start creating a buzz on social media. Offer your contacts an incentive to visit your booth. Reach out before the show and book appointments at your booth. Sit down with your sales team to determine which of your hottest prospects need the VIP treatment at the show. The more you do upfront, the better your ROI.

3. If you build it they will come…or will they? Focus on quality F2F interaction on site!
At an exposition, no activity positively or negatively influences an attendee’s perception of a brand more than the professionalism of the exhibit staff. Inactivity of on-site staff or the inability to communicate in the local language can lead to loss of customers. Happy, excited faces ready to interact are a necessary condition for success in this kind of professional exhibition. Make sure the face of your brand is smiling and inviting!

4. Be that booth everybody is talking about. Create a buzz!
What is the point of having a booth at a tradeshow if no one notices you are there? The busiest booths at the show were those that were interactive and even a bit quirky. Live fish filleting demonstrations, amazing fresh samples and crazy displays all turned casual passerbys into involved spectators and potential customers. Take some time and really think about the ways people could interact with you…even if it seems a little crazy! If it’s authentic to your brand values and executed professionally, you will be noticed and remembered. It would be hard not to remember a talking polar bear, wouldn’t it?

Partner with 3L for Global Event Excellence!

When it comes to creating an experience with your brand, don’t be afraid to think outside of the box – and don’t be afraid to ask for help!

3L Corporation provides a comprehensive menu of world class services that span from creative booth design to installation and dismantling… and everything in between. We have a reputation for flawless execution and our clients entrust us with their most important asset: their “brand” and we take that trust very seriously.

Let us help you to optimize your investment and really stand out at your next trade event. Call us toll free at +1 833 WE-ARE-3L and discover why 3L is the preeminent tradeshow and event marketing company designed to serve your every “experiential marketing” needs.

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