In many industries, trade fairs and the accompanying conferences are often one of the marketing and communications highlights of the year. These events are used to introduce new products, discuss key industry topics and communicate the trends of the next few months. For exhibitors and organizers, they also represent the pinnacle of their content marketing efforts. Events and the organizers are offering a widening array of new opportunities, not only for distributing content, but also for collecting interesting topics for their own content pipelines.
We spoke about this with Stefanie Hombach, Online Marketing Manager in the Messe Frankfurt Digital Services team.
Ms Hombach, what do you and your colleagues do in terms of content marketing?
We develop increasingly refined content marketing strategies, often in close collaboration with industry associations and exhibitors, to highlight upcoming key topics leading up to our events as a way of attracting visitors via targeted marketing. Advertising, social media, blogs , PR work, native ads and targeted search engine marketing are used to draw attention to the topics of the season. We sometimes even work with universities and research institutions to cultivate our own content and take an active part in defining the agenda. A good example of this is the “Mobility 4.0” study conducted by our colleagues, who are organizing the Hypermotion trade fair for the first time this year.
Are there any special options designed to help trade fair exhibitors market their content in a smarter way?
Trade fair organisers often offer their exhibitors a wide range of options to sustainably extend the reach of their content marketing strategies to attract visitors to their own stands using trade fair platforms. Advertising and paid content can be placed on the organizer’s own web and blog platforms, in exhibitor and product directories or in mobile apps, our even be integrated in targeted direct advertising in visitor databases using the omnibus method.
But that is not all. Conventions and showcases are organized to give exhibitors the opportunity to present their own topics. These also serve as the central source of information inspiration for new content, which is included in subsequent media reports or the exhibitor’s own content and therefore define the agenda following the event. For many exhibitors, this is a great opportunity to engage in “agenda surfing” in the social news stream for the trade fair or media reporting.
So trade fairs not only provide a stand area and visitors, but also actively define the topic environment?
Today’s trade fairs and events are not just hotspots for personal interaction, but also serve as central hubs for quality content. Due to the increasing digital connectivity and the continual improvements be made to data pool, event organizers can offer more and more touchpoints with the valuable target group of “trade fair visitors” to gain new content or position a company’s own topics using excellent content strategies.
Exhibitors therefore benefit from the trade fair organizer’s carefully planned content offering and established distribution channels by being able to exponentially increase the reach of their content within the industry community. And all of this is part of a news cycle that often spans several weeks or months including pre- and post-event reporting.