Wedding fair season is approaching; now it’s time to create your marketing plan for what’s to come.
I say this as I see many exhibitors approach a show/ wedding fair with a ‘wing it’ approach. This is when they pay their money, turn up with a pull up banner and leaflets, they might engage in conversation with potential couples but their close of the conversation is a leaflet, and then they send the couple on their way. The conversation has ended, no email or contact details have been collected.
The next few days, weeks & months is a sit and wait game. No idea if the ‘wing it’ strategy is going to work or not.
A lot of people ask what’s the best way to collect data at exhibitions & wedding fayres; today I’m going to give you some helpful tried and tested methods.
The first wedding fair data collection tool is a competition.
This is a great way to collect data; a competition to enter at your stand to win a certain package. This has to be something of good value. It’s also a good way to start a conversation with a couple.
What you will find is that people love to win; if your package is a mid-way price point, you will probably find the winner will upgrade. This is not guaranteed of course but 80% will. Think of the scenario when you might go to a restaurant on a 2-4-1 main meals offer. Now the restaurant will not be making any money on the 2-4-1 main, what they are aiming for is you ordering a starter, pudding and drink in addition to that 2-4-1 main. That’s where they make their money.
It works in much the same way for a competition. The winner will most probably want more and will add extras to their winning booking.
The real winner in this is the data that has been collected. For what to do with the data, check out our article about following up with your potential leads after an exhibition/wedding fayre.
The competition is a great data collection method; you will get a lot of people enter and it’s a good opener. What you tend to find is people will naturally want to see what people are looking at, human nature proves we are all nosy and inquisitive creatures.
Now not every company likes to do competitions, so the next method is one where you can collect data from couples who show genuine interest in what you’re selling.
Here you can use this following method as an opener to carry the conversation on after the exhibition. Once you have spoken to the potential customer at your stand, you offer to send them a gift in the post or depending on what you do, send them something via email. This has to be something of value such as a cake company sending a cake sample in the post. This information could be taken at the exhibition through asking the couple what flavours they like and explaining you’d like to send them an example of your cakes so they can taste for themselves.
Although there’s a cost to this, the cake should sell itself and is a great way to engage in lots of conversations.
The important thing to remember here is the difference between having a tray of cake samples on display at an exhibition and sending an individual sample out beautifully boxed in the post. The tray of cake samples encourages people to try them, but you have no way of collecting their data as they walk past and grab a free sample, and it also doesn’t have that special touch that you need to nurture your potential customer.
Remember with all data collection you need to get the information to be able to communicate with your couples.
We have template download forms on our website for you to use, so no need to worry about creating one.
Important to remember – Although there’s a cost to sending gifts to potential customers, if it’s done right the cost will be insignificant to your sale.
Other Data Collection examples
Another suggestion is if you are a venue, invite the couple for free afternoon tea and a show round.
Or if you’re a singer, you could send the couples their first dance song over email after finding that information out at the wedding fair you attended.
A photographer can take the photo of a couple at a wedding fair, make a keyring and send that in the post.
The possibilities of collecting data at a wedding fair/exhibition are endless.
The time and effort you put into nurturing these couples now will mean you reap the rewards tenfold.
Anyone can hand out a leaflet, but the leaflet can act as a conversation closer before the couple have had time to ask questions. It’s about engaging in that conversation and giving couples a reason to wait to give you their details.
So now’s the time to think of your marketing strategy ahead of wedding fair season. Every show you showcase at you have to monitor what worked and what didn’t to keep tweaking your marketing and promotional information until you have a working system to collect data that gives you maximum return. For what not to do at a wedding fair, check out our top 5 big No No’S here, and what to do instead.
Remember data is king.