“Social media isn’t the end-all-be-all, but it offers marketers unparalleled opportunity to participate in relevant ways. It also provides a launchpad for other marketing tactics. Social media is not an island. It’s a high-power engine on the larger marketing ship.” Matt Dickman, technomarketer.typepad.com
It seems like, to counteract the virtual aspects of social marketing, trade shows have remained firmly within the confines of the 3 dimensions of our physical world. Trade shows are not only unique to meeting, greeting and collecting leads, they are the fierece battle gounds in business. It is one frontier where "the business value of Facebook and the other social media is still largely untapped " says Scott Wherley, vice president of global customer insights with Reed Expositions, one of the world’s largest event organizers. “Some companies are doing it well, but many are not making the most of this opportunity.”
Scott Wherley says, that some exhibitors are sending out tweets during the show, offering discounts on their products for those who come to their booth within a prescribed time (say, the next 30 minutes).
Since, social marketing is multi-channel and cross-platform, in the days and weeks leading up to the show, exhibitors are creating a buzz about the event on various channels. During the show, marketers are posting “Special Reports,” updating show attendees from the trade show floor about special sessions and surprises. The companies are posting blogs and tweeting several times a day, keeping their blog subscribers who were unable to attend the show in the loop as to what they’re missing — while creating fresh and compelling content, that amplifies SEO and generates prolonged awareness.
Dave Clarke, an award-winning editor, says, a physical trade show presence and a virtual presence are not mutually exclusive, though; in fact, just the opposite. "Ratcheting up your social media marketing, before, during, and after a trade show is proving one of the most effective ways to drive traffic to your booth and cement the relationships you’ve come there to forge."
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