6 Key Metrics to Measure Trade Show ROI

Tradesmen participate in various trade shows from time to time. Being a part of a successful trade shows brings benefits like business exposure, networking, and learning, but since trade shows are quite expensive to participate in, a tradie must look for a measurable positive ROI that can be tracked. A tradie should, after all, be able to determine if trade show participation has been worth the while for him.

Let’s look at some important metrics for analyzing the effectiveness of your trade show marketing efforts:

  1. Average Cost Per Opportunity
  2. To get an idea about the success of your trade show participation, track the average cost per opportunity. To track this metric you will need to know: the total amount of money spent on a trade show and the total leads generated through the show which got converted into opportunity.

    Average Cost per Opportunity = total money spent on a trade show/ total leads converted into opportunity.

    In the beginning, your cost per opportunity will be high as it may take several weeks or even months before leads convert to an opportunity. If you need to evaluate and make decisions on marketing spend soon after the trade show, use average cost per lead to determine the success of your participation in the show.

    Average Cost per Lead = total money spent on trade show/ total leads generated through the trade show

    This metric allows a tradie to benchmark how cost-effective a tradeshow has been for him as compared to other marketing channels. If you exhibit at multiple shows, the average cost per lead will give you an insight into the comparative effectiveness of each show.

  3. Social Media Reach
  4. The other metric to measure during and after your participation in a trade show is your social media reach. It is the number of people you influence or reach on social channels after being present in a trade show. This includes your Facebook fans, Twitter followers, email contacts, blog subscribers and more.

    Social media reach is a vanity metric which on its own gives no useful insights. But used in conjunction with other social media metrics like social media engagement, acquisition, conversion, etc., it will give you an idea whether it was worth your time and money participating in a trade show. Use social media monitoring tools to track different social media metrics.

    Also identify the social channels that created more buzz post the show. Identifying which channels were more successful will tell you where you should invest the bulk of your resources.

  5. Website Traffic
  6. A professionally built website helps you know the number of visitors you attract. If there is any spike in the visitor count post a trade show, it is obvious that the demonstration of your business at the show was a hit.

    There are two ways consumers reach your website: by directly typing your company’s URL in a Web browser (direct traffic), or by searching for your company name in search engines (organic traffic).

    To figure out the success of your trade show presence, you need to consider traffic that comes to your website both ways. For this you need to:

    • Count the number of average visitors your website received before the show.
    • Count the number of average visitors your website received during and immediately after the show.
    • Compare the two figures.

    There should be an increase in direct traffic and organic search to your website after being present on the trade show.

  7. New Leads
  8. Raising brand awareness is one of the objectives of trade show participation for a tradie. To determine the success of your brand awareness campaign, measure the number of leads generated.

    It is an absolute must to use analytics and website tracking programs to monitor your leads. To create a tracking URL, you just need to add a parameter to the end of your website’s link that your analytics system can identify and associate with the trade show. This will enable you to more accurately track visitors who otherwise look like they are coming from some other marketing channel.

    Analytic tools also help you know different sources (social media, direct traffic, organic traffic, etc.) that these leads use to land on your website. You can also measure the leads generated from each source.

    Gaining insights into this metric, you can nurture your leads by using techniques for your lead management success.

  9. New Customers and Incremental Business from Existing Customers
  10. An important metric you will want to measure is the number of new customers your trade show presence generated. You can determine this number by implementing closed loop marketing to track the number of leads that got converted into customers. Measure the revenue you generated from these new customers to measure the trade show ROI.

    The goal of participating in a trade show should not just be attracting new customers, but also gaining more business from your existing customers. Tradies should therefore also measure the number of old customers who contacted them back for service during and after the completion of the trade show.

  11. Demonstrations
  12. One of the key metrics to measure is the number of demonstrations you gave during a trade show. Demonstrations in a trade show booth can reveal how successful you were in presenting your demo or talking about your services. You should also keep an eye on the number of people who listen or interact with you during demonstrations. Measuring and analyzing your trade show marketing efforts will tell you how successful you were and will also identify the areas where you need to improve.

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