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What Do I Do With My Marketing Materials When the Trade Show is Canceled?

Sometimes, no matter how much you plan and prepare for some of the most important events of the year, trade shows and conferences can be canceled for various reasons.


As of March 2020, we are experiencing large-scale conference cancellation and postponement due to health concerns tied to the COVID-19 pandemic (coronavirus). So, what happens to the presentations, brochures and other marketing materials you worked so hard to create and promote?


Rather than just accepting a loss, consider instead that there may be viable opportunities to adapt and modify so that you can still get those core messages to your key audiences.


And here’s another thought: Did you get your attendee registration money back? If so, those funds can be used to gain visibility and drive more leads.


Common Trade Show and Conference Materials


Don’t throw away all your hard work. Take a look at your marketing materials and see what you can share with customers and clients while the content is still timely and relevant.


What you can do now with:


  • Your speech or presentation materials
  • Printed conference materials such as brochures and printouts


Presentation Materials


The good news about presentations is that they are already in a digital format, making it easier than ever to share them (or in some cases, perhaps condensed versions of them). Use that to your advantage.


Other types of presentation materials may also be valuable but need to be handled differently due to their varied formats, such as:


  • Keynote Speech – Can be shared as a link within an email blast; or maybe excerpted in a blog post
  • Round-table May be rescheduled as an online forum or webinar
  • Panel Discussion – Can also be held online, perhaps with different experts if original participants no longer available
  • Training – If feasible, can be reimagined as an online course
  • Thought Leadership – Perhaps is shared as an interview in print


Printed Conference Materials


So, what happens with all the printed materials?


  • If you have a brochure or pamphlet, explore whether it can easily be turned into a downloadable PDF
  • If possible, send materials through the show administrators to would-be attendees
  • Create a conference landing page on your website to house information you would have shared at the show and offer downloads of your materials as PDF’s on the page
  • If hard copies are your only option, you can now mail them to your top show prospects or carry them along with you to customer meetings


No matter what the circumstances, there are always creative ways to salvage your marketing materials and still make them work for you, even if through alternative methods.


Trying to figure out the path forward with a recently canceled conference? Give us a call or visit our Contact page today.

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