By Molly Heitz


Face-to-face marketing is a great way to reach customers, especially for local business owners. From industry trade shows to special events, this is a great way to reach your clients while putting a face to your brand.


What to Do First

When brainstorming ways to reach your target audience through face-to-face marketing effectively, you will want to consider your branded look. This typically involves a table set up, booth or display.


Ask yourself three questions as you get started:


First, what’s the budget? Can I create my “dream booth display,” or is money an issue – it usually is! Set a budget.


Second, what are the potential uses for this marketing setup? Will it be used indoors and outdoors or just one or the other? Think not only about the event that is prompting your purchase but other ways it can be used. You don’t want to waste money from poor planning.


Third, what is the desired return on investment and call to action of this booth? What do we want the consumers to do at the booth and after they leave? And how do we judge success (ROI)? Do we need to make sales onsite at the booth, get contact names for future sales calls, capture the client for email signup for ongoing newsletters and offers, etc.?


Now You are Ready to Design Your Set Up


As you plan your booth’s content, ensure you understand the situation. If your booth is outdoors, you don’t want to use something that requires electricity if it won’t be readily available, and if you are doing both indoors and outdoors, you will need a multi-use option.


Some standard items for consideration include:


  • Branded Booth
  • Branded Pop-Up Tent with optional sidewalls and back walls (good for inclement weather)
  • Lightweight table
  • Brand tablecloths, table throws or huggers
  • Standing pull-up banners, feather banners, teardrop banners, etc.
  • Windsocks or mini-blimps


Adding a large TV monitor to promote your company can capture people’s attention nearby or share information with people you did not get to talk with. You may want to consider a Bluetooth speaker and playlist for your booth. An interactive kiosk that features an iPad is an excellent addition that is not overly pricey. Add a bit of fun with some branded director’s chairs. Be creative, so you stand out from the crowd!


Need some vendor recommendations?


TLC Marketing Consultants preferred provider for more luxurious booth sets is


For less expensive, simple options, FASTSIGNS franchisees tend to be a great option – plus, they are typically locally owned, so you are helping out another local business. Our local KC vendor is great – ask for Brad!



Premium Items & Entertainment


Another thing to consider is if you will give out premium items at your display booth. A premium item is something that the customer can physically take away from your booth and use. Typically you want your premium item to be branded with some of your info –  logo, website, social platforms, business number, QR codes, etc. The most important thing to remember about choosing a premium item is to ensure that this is something the target audience will want to use and hopefully retain for a bit. Note: there are exceptions to every rule, so this is simply a good rule of thumb.


Aside from the premium items, you may want something else to grab their attention and provide a point of differentiation between your competitors at the event. This can be anything from food, candy and drinks to music, lighting or having your local sports team mascot or cheerleaders give photo ops at your booth. Again, you want to select entertainment that appeals to your target audience.


Signing Them Up!


If possible, you should use options in your booth for name capture, including mobile phone and email. Capturing names can be as simple as displaying a QR code, using an interactive display or having an online option where customers register and fill out forms. Stay current with the times and your clients; avoid manual entry forms. If you are doing a booth with an audience of over 50, you don’t want to overdo the technology; if your audience is younger, you don’t want to be handing out flyers.


Need some help with your face-to-face marketing strategy? Contact TLC Marketing Consultants today!