Participating in exhibitions, conferences and trade shows is a good idea for businesses to showcase their products and services. What’s more you will be attending the biggest halal exhibition in the world, MIHAS 2018! If this is the first time your brand is participating in MIHAS, we have listed down a few tips to make your MIHAS 2018 experience an enriching opportunity for all. The quote “when you fail to plan, you plan to fail” rings true, so let’s delve right in.

1. Research, Research, Research

It is important for you to do your research before jumping in on the exhibition bandwagon. Identify your objective for participating in MIHAS 2018. If you are looking for trade partners and collaborators, this would be the ideal avenue. Last year alone, 576 exhibitors from 80 different countries participated in MIHAS. Other items to look into can include finding out which of your competitors are also exhibiting, what are the most efficient and cost-effective logistics options and what your business target audience is like. These added insights could keep you ahead of the game, setting your business ahead of your competitors.

From time to time, the Secretariat will keep you up to date with the latest news on MIHAS and other trends in the halal industry via our social media platforms. Do follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter & Instagram.

2. Consider Your Booth Aesthetics and Layout

A creative display can make or break your event. Not only can it increase footfall to your booth, a well done display also leaves a good impression on a potential future trade partner. A good display represents what your brand aspires to be. Other than the lightings and the graphic display, another aspect to be put into consideration is a practical layout that would enhance customer experience and open their minds to what you have to offer. When setting it up, you could ask the following questions to ensure an optimal layout for visitors. Is the booth too cluttered with collaterals? Can discussions be done conducively at your booth? What will be the premium gifts for visitors? A premium gift should be practical for the receiver and ideally durable to assist in top mind recollection. Gifts such as ball pens, thumb drive, notepads are good to meet such objective. Besides that, you could also look into experiential design for your booth such as coming up with one activity, be it trying a sample, receiving free gifts, small contests, photo booth for social media and interactive touch points, among others. These little known techniques if executed right keeps you ahead of the game during the exhibition. Should you need more information on available booths and contacts for local booth construction, MIHAS Secretariat would be happy to assist you.

3. Pre-event Marketing

It is less than four months before MIHAS 2018 takes place. You need to have a clear marketing plan in place to promote your attendance in MIHAS 2018. Sending out e-mails or brochures to your existing audience is a given, but you should also consider how you will be reaching the trade visitors and future prospects. Create hype by having countdown to MIHAS 2018 in all your communication channels that includes social media as well as newsletters. Follow the social media accounts of MIHAS and join in the conversation, anything to get your presence in the event known. If you are interested in marketing to businesses and prospective trade partners, follow our LinkedIn group and start a conversation with other key players in the industry.

Collateral preparation is also an integral part of participating in exhibitions. Spend some time to tweak and personalise the message to the visitors and your target trade partners. An example would be creating a classy business invitation to targeted trade partners for a discussion. As MIHAS will be a great opportunity for you to network, bring enough name cards! Be prepared to create a one-off promotional campaign just for the event to create a sense of urgency in your prospects.

4.Organise Your Business And Logistics

Regardless of your company size, losing a few personnel for a few days will create bottlenecks in the daily business operation. It is important for businesses to anticipate any challenges that could arise in their regular business operations due to pulling away manpower from these operations to attend MIHAS 2018. Do also ensure there are enough representatives during MIHAS 2018 to cater to the expected large volume of crowd as well as having key personnel whom are authorised to meet with key leaders of the industry during the business networking sessions.

If your business is not based in Malaysia, some of the considerations could be transportation for local and domestic travels. The transportation assessment should include items such as international flights for personnel, courier services for exhibition assets, and transportation and logistics during the exhibition. Another item to consider is if the construction of the exhibition booths are to be at the base country or Malaysia, possible immigration and customs issues, as well as accommodation for your company’s personnel. Our Secretariat is ready to assist you with your questions pertaining to MIHAS 2018.

5. Marketing During the Event and Post Event

It is now easier than ever to personalise marketing communications to your intended audience. The marketing effort should not end at the booth. Conduct a live tweet or a live feed of the exhibition! Expand your reach to attract customers beyond the physical boundaries of your booth. Create excitement and hype as well as make your brand look more relatable. If you are attending any of our other activities such as MIHAS Kitchen and the Trade Talks, live tweet and add our hashtags to gather a bigger audience for your brand. Relevant hashtags are: #MIHAS2018 #halal #ThinkHalalThinkMIHAS

This sounds far ahead in the future, but a business should already plan its strategy for post-event marketing. How will you reach the new and prospective customers and trade partners that you have gained at MIHAS 2018? Ensure a proper system is in place to nurture the new relationships via e-mail, telephone and other modes of communication. Do address any arising questions that were unable to be answered during the exhibition. Should time be a limitation during the exhibition, do join our LinkedIn Group to stay in touch with other key players of the industry and engage in interesting conversations at the link.

In conclusion, preparing for MIHAS 2018 should be comprehensive, but it does not have to be daunting. By taking these tips into consideration and tailoring it to the business’ end goal, you will be able to enjoy the experience even more!

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