Unique Ways to Collect Emails at a Trade Shows

Creative Ways to Collect Emails at Trade Shows

Creative Ways to Connect and Collect Emails at a Trade Show

Have you been wondering, “How do I collect email addresses from an event?” Meeting happy customers and new leads at a trade show is just the first step to engaging them. Once you’ve made a connection, how do you keep it going long after you’ve all packed up and headed home? There are a lot of unique opportunities that come from trade show marketing, but only if you have a way of getting in touch with all of those people who stopped by your booth. Since typical sign-up sheets aren’t nearly engaging enough, we have a few other ideas for email collection tools for you. 

Create an Irresistible Photo Op

Since you can count on just about all of your trade show visitors having a smartphone camera on hand, why not have them put it to good use? Set up a photo background, provide props, and consider having a staff member or two in costume (like dressed as your company mascot, maybe?) to take a photo with. Encourage social media posting with a branded hashtag, too! Bonus points if you run a social media sweepstakes so a random person (or persons) can get a prize for posting.

Exchange Branded Giveaway Items for Email Addresses

Most people love getting something for free, and providing their contact information via event email apps is an extremely small price to pay for a high-quality giveaway. When you're offering freebies as great as portable chargers, reusable drinkware, and audio devices, who's going to be able to resist? Don’t think these gifts are too expensive to offer for free. Think about how much a new customer is worth over the course of a year – even a pricey giveaway is worth what you could get in return. Check out our list of top 10 trade show giveaway ideas to get started. 

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Offer Free Custom Food and Drink

Giving away a snack or a drink (or both!) is super successful. First, booth visitors won't have to carry something around for the rest of their time at the trade show – they'll thank you for that. Second, if they do walk around while munching, others will take notice – and if you have branded bags or containers for the food items, those people will know exactly where to go. Third, you can encourage them to stick around longer by providing a space to sit while they snack. Then, strike up a conversation or simply glean some customer insight based on what they're chatting about.

Run a Giveaway Raffle

You may not be able to give away hundreds of big-ticket items, but you can certainly afford one or two if it means a chance to grow your email list. Ask people to provide their email addresses to be entered for the chance to win a major prize, like custom electronics or a logo-branded YETI cooler. The better the prize, the more willing people will be to enter. In the meantime, you can offer them some of your smaller merch as a thank you.

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Create a Tradeshow Booth Theme

A great-looking trade show booth isn't always the same as a memorable booth. To solve this problem, use costumes and decorations to create a theme for both your booth and your staff. Don't be afraid to look a little silly or corny, either! So long as you're on-brand, even a laughable theme can mean that potential customers will remember your company long after the trade show's over.


Use QR Codes to Collecting for Email


Provide Signup Links to Your Social Media Accounts

Sometimes, your main goal isn’t trade show email collection. If what you're after are social media followers, then make it easy for booth visitors to follow you on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, or whatever platform you're trying to grow. Apps like OnSpot Social let you create an easy social media subscription page or QR code to convert people into followers.

Set Up Interactive Games and Quizzes

As trade show attendees stroll by your booth, trying to ask them a question about their shopping preferences or if they’re in need of something for the home isn’t going to grab their attention as you might hope. But a fun, interactive game can! Whether you have physical carnival-style games, fast-paced trivia, or video games on a tablet, asking people to play can go a lot farther than bombarding them with questions. Oh, and don’t forget to give away branded merch as prizes to the winners.

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Contact a Merchologist for help finding the right trade show giveaway gifts for your event! We have even more trade show resources and ideas to explore, too — find them here.