[Creative Technology at PC Show 2015] How To Organise A Successful Roadshow Booth

So this weekend, the quarterly PC Show 2015 is being held at Singapore Expo. I have not been to these fairs for some time because they are simply too far. But this time, I had some things to purchase. Plus, there’s an experience zone for the Gear VR Innovator Edition at the PC Show too. (It only works with the Galaxy S6 though).

samsung gear vr innovator

But what caught my attention was the Creative Technology booth at the PC Show 2015. And here are 3 sales boosting features that I’d noticed at their booth.

creative technolgy

1. Location, Location, Location

I think this is one of the keys to running a successful roadshow booth. The location of your booth. And Creative seemed to have got that right this PC Show.

At first glance, their location may not seem ideal at all. They are located at the end of Hall 5 (most of the crowd coming from the MRT would reach Hall 6 first), and they are surrounded by the booths taken by banks (these are notorious for having numerous hungry credit card salesmen trying to get you to register for a new card in return for a free luggage). It’s the very spot that most PC Show attendees would avoid.

But read on and you will see why I would argue that this is actually a great location!

routes to creative booth
PC Show 2015 Floor Plan (Taken from itfairsg.com)

Flow of the PC Show attendees

Most attendees would enter and make their way from Hall 6 to Hall 5 in a similar direction mapped out by the red line. And a smaller crowd would come in via the green line.

If you came from the red line, you’ll probably have fought through the crowd of slow-moving, deal-hunting consumers and ‘I’m-paid-to-stuff-flyers-in-your-face’ part time sales personnel. If you came from via the green line, you’d probably have fought through a crowd of hungry credit card salesmen on top of the usual consumers and other sales personnel.

Providing a safe zone that feels welcoming

welcoming
Creative’s booth felt like a safe place hidden amongst the crowded hall

Regardless of the path you took, reaching the Creative booth would feel like a breath of relief – it felt like a ‘safe zone’ to me. It feels like a resting ground in a crazy world, except the fact that it’s set up to subtly prepare you to buy something from them.

Cost Efficient 

It is probably cheaper for Creative to get a bigger booth at Hall 5 instead of fighting for ‘prime space’ at Hall 6 where all their direct competitors (the other sound and IT companies) are too. After all, with the disadvantages of their location, it is likely that other exhibitors would naturally avoid that particular booth.

At Creative’s booth, there were 2 stages, I picked up 2 more sales boosting features from these stages that Creative used to drive traffic to their booth.

As mentioned above, the major disadvantage of their booth location is that most PC Show attendees would avoid that area, due to the high chance of being pestered by sales people. And so, Creative had to draw the crowd in actively. And this was how they did it.

2. Use of Freebies, and cheap sales to draw in the crowd

Using professionally trained sales presenters

angst
When every booth is fighting for your attention, at the SAME TIME

There were 2 stages at the Creative booth. Instead of getting regular MCs that we often hear at such IT fairs – those who stand on some difficult to spot, small raised platform shouting the latest hourly special into a mic that is being pushed to the maximum legal volume, Creative actually got real sales presenters who seem to know their stuff.

On top of being able to demonstrate the how the product works, these presenters actually looked like they are in love with the product themselves. And were very good at selling the desirable experience that their products can bring.

Their stage is set up, well, like a real stage. You’d know where the speaker is, and where to look.

Creating a buzz by generating a crowd

The small stage located at where the X is in the floorplan below. All of their other featured products were sold on this stage.

freebies
The location of their traffic generating stage

However, there was another purpose for this stage – it is used to draw in the crowd.

In front of this stage, there were no chairs. The speaker is an eloquent middle age man dressed in formal wear, not unlike the salesman you’d see at departmental stores selling various wares. He is a professional and he works with a team. During my visit, he was selling two different products at two different timings – the Sound Blaster Roar and the Outlier wireless headset.

During both presentations, there was a crowd gathered in front of the stage, listening to him intently. This stage was set up to be relatively narrow, and quite short, giving the salesman a more intimate interaction with his audience.

models

During his presentation on the Outlier headset, he had beautiful female models wearing the headsets while he explained the specifications and features of the headset. In the crowd, he had a team member who was getting ready to give out free Creative ear pieces. After his exciting, energetic introduction to the Outlier headset, he directed the crowd to his team of salesmen on the ground by having the headset models and the freebie guy lead the way. It felt like the times when we placed bread crumbs on the floor to lead my cousin’s hamster out of its cage.

So anyway, back to the main point.

Although there were sales presentations for some products, the main purpose of this stage is to gather a crowd that will in turn draw more attention to the Creative booth.

The apt use of a FREE lead magnet

freebies

To make sure that this stage succeeded, they had to provide people with a reason to walk over to their booth. Other than placing their brand name high so that it is more visible, they had another secret trick up their sleeves (located at the green triangle in the floor plan) – a Free Slot Machine where participants could get a chance to win one of their PC Show featured product. Any chance to win something for free naturally draws a queue.

Those in the queue would naturally listen in to the speaker’s presentation. And after their turn, they would linger in front of the stage – because the speaker promises more chances to getting free products!

And thus, a crowd is formed.

This crowd then attracted more PC Show attendees over. Within this crowd that starts to visit the Creative booth, there will bound to be some audiophiles among the rest who are just window shopping. And these people are attracted to the main stage, where they are treated to an enjoyable audio experience that subtly sells them on the main product that Creative is selling during this PC Show.

3. It’s all about the Experience – Creating Desire

The bigger and more prominent stage is located here (see floorplan below – X marks the spot~)

Experience

(On the 5 June when I was there) This stage was dedicated to the sales of The Sound Blaster X7 – the product of focus by Creative at the PC Show 2015.

(Note: If you are an audiophile, please don’t bring any cash or credit card – even I was tempted to buy the Sound Blaster X7!)

sound blaster x7

As part of the stage set up, there were 8 Sound Blaster X7s from which various genre of music, from instrumental to pop was played. Chairs were prepared for the audience right in front of this stage. These chairs invited tired PC Show attendees a place to rest their feet while listening to good music. The speaker would describe in great detail, the kind of sound to expect from the upcoming track. This totally preps the audience to pick up whatever the speaker wants us to hear (and ultimately feel).

audiophile
Taken from medium.com

This stage creates the Experience of having great music. And, you can re-create this experience right at your home. With the power of 8 Sound Blasters (and high volume), we were given an eargasmic experience. By providing a good audio experience, topped with the excited speaker who can explain to exact detail, the type of music that you deserve to enjoy,  a desire for the Sound Blaster is created in the audience who stay throughout the presentation.

Because of the location of the Creative booth, there is little noise pollution coming from their neighbouring booths. (I noticed the salesmen from the neighbouring booth enjoying the music too) If you take a look at their neighbours (via the floorplan) you’d notice that they are surrounded mostly by credit card companies – and these booths did not have MCs screaming about hourly specials.

If Creative had taken up a booth at Hall 6, I’d imagine that it would have been way tougher to provide such an experience for their audience while trying to fight against the surrounding noise.

Conclusion

This experience fascinated me for 2 main reasons. Creative has showed me that:

  1. It is possible to create a traffic funnel at a LIVE roadshow.
  2. It is possible to convert what I have learnt in Digital Marketing into elements at an offline event.

How you can implement what they did to your business – both offline and online

The 3 sales-boosting strategies that I picked up from the way Creative’s booth was set up are:

  1. Location
  2. Use of Freebies (to draw in a crowd)
  3. Create a desirable Experience

Here are some questions which may boost your business, for you to ponder on.

Making use of their location, they planned the activities at their booth strategically. Do you have a business strategy in mind?

First up, they had to grab the attention of the PC Show attendees, using Freebies. What are you doing in your business to grab the attention of your target audience?

Secondly, they had to educate the crowd about their main product. They did this by creating an experience for their target audience – this build desire for their product. Are you educating your target audience and creating desire for your product in the marketplace?

 

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Disclaimer: I’m not a professional roadshow organisor and have not ran any roadshows before. I’m just a geeky marketer who is curious about marketing, driving traffic and closing sales, large scale.

Written by Yen Yee

Yen Yee

An aspiring digital entrepreneur who continues to learn and find her way around in the online world.

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