13 Oct 2016


10 tips for success at HKTDC Hong Kong International Wine & Spirits Fair

The HKTDC Hong Kong International Wine & Spirits Fair is fast approaching but there is still time to get ready and prepare for success.

We have put together a list of tips to maximize your return on investment.

Before the Show


1. Promote your booth

No matter how good your product is at selling itself, a good promotional campaign is never a bad idea. An effective promotional campaign should start a month before the actual exhibition as it involves multiple steps.

Identify your strategy:

Crystallize your objectives by answering the questions below: what’s your objective in that market? Is it brand building, a volume or a margin play? what are the specific types of buyers you want to attract? Boutique or mass market, modern or traditional, Western or local? what’s your time frame for signing the deals?

Once you identify your objectives and target segments, email and call them two to three weeks in advance to book appointments

Tips: if you are new to the market, you can research relevant associations or find out buyers of your competitors. The HKTDC Hong Kong International Wine & Spirits Fair organizer might already have such info. If not, consider hiring someone via on-demand hiring agency JobDoh in the local market to help.

Build your page:

Your website is great because it serves a specific purpose: explaining who you are and what you do. Unfortunately, it hardly tells the HKTDC Hong Kong International Wine & Spirits Fair visitors why they should be paying you a visit.

Construct a company page as early as possible, explaining briefly who you are, what you do, what you will be presenting at the Wine & Spirits Expo; show some of your products, wines and alcohols; make your catalog available and invite people to book an appointment with you right away.

The HKTDC Hong Kong International Wine & Spirits Fair buyers don’t have time to review every exhibitor’s website in details: make their life easier and your results better by constructing a page specially for them. myfairtool can help you building your page and promoting it in a few easy steps.

Tips: highlight your hook. What’s the single most important reason they should meet you rather than another exhibitor?

2. Setup your post-show strategy

From November 10 to 12, 2016, you will be busy at the Hong Kong Convention Center talking to wine and spirits buyers. But what’s next?

You need to plan further ahead. Statistics show that 35 to 50% of the contracts signed post-event go to the vendor that follows-up first.

To achieve that, you must have a strong follow-up strategy already in place BEFORE the event even takes place.

Prepare your profiles list:

You certainly already have a clear idea of the type of people you will meet at the HKTDC Hong Kong Wine & Spirits Fair. Your list might be “Distributors”, “Wholesalers”, “Retailers”, “Partners”, “Suppliers”, “Others”.

Tips: always keep a category “others” to follow-up with people that don’t fit in other categories. They might not have direct impact on your business but they are in your industry and may have indirect impact at some point, don’t underestimate them.

Setup your email templates:

Now that you have identified the type of people you expect to meet in your booth, pre-write email templates for each of these buyer personas. All you will have to do post-event is customize the emails a little, keeping the same backbone, and follow-up in no time!

Tips: good email templates are very generic but contain a specific area easy to customize to make it more personal.

3. Recruit the right staff

The last thing you want at the exhibition is lost sales due to staff shortage. In addition to bringing staff from your home country, hire local temporary staff for a few days. Benefits of doing so include: local knowledge local language lower cost flexibility in resource management pre-show and post-show local support

Tips: on-demand recruitment agencies such as JobDoh are specialized in trade shows and already has a list of people that will fit your needs and expectations.

4. Train your team

If you are flying in your own staff for the exhibition, suggest that you not only ensure them having the right product knowledge but also knowledge about local customs and practices.

If you are hiring temporary staff, do send them product info (and company introduction video if available) a week in advance to study. Suggest you to select staff who studied or worked in a relevant discipline so they will have basic industry knowledge.

If you are using specific methods to qualify leads, capture prospect information or to offer wine tasting, inform and train your staff ahead of time.

Tips: when handing out business cards to Chinese at the HKTDC Hong Kong International Wine & Spirits Fair in Hong Kong, it is advised to do so with both hands.

During the Event


5. Capture leads efficiently

Make sure your entire team is using the same method for capturing leads and collecting the essential information.

You do not want half of your leads in paper form, others in digital format while others in business cards without notes. This would surely slow-down your follow-up.

Tips: prefer digital lead capture over pen and paper to standardize your format and to speed-up your follow-ups. Since you will need to transfer all info to a computer format anyway, better save time and start right!

6. Give regular feedback

Your team, both in-house and temp-hired, needs guidance and feedback. Observe how they act and regularly give them feedback, tips and advice to improve.

Remind them to be smiling, to look visitors in the eye, to not play with their phones or chit-chat with their colleagues, etc.

Tips: do not be judgmental or negative - you don’t want to reduce their motivation. Be helpful and help them to improve while boosting their motivation.

7. Drive additional traffic

The HKTDC Hong Kong Wine & Spirits Fair is a very large event driving a lot of traffic. Nevertheless, depending on your booth location, you may not get nearly as much traffic as you would need. That is your job to redirect some of the main traffic to your booth. scope out the high traffic (and legal) area to stage a few promoters/ flyer distributors have the promoters show the interested buyers to your booth ensure you have a sufficient number of interpreters

Tips: there is no better method to driving additional traffic to your booth than words of mouth. Encourage people to talk about you by giving them a great first impression.

8. Plan for the next steps: If you are staying a few days in Hong Kong, invite your most interested leads for post-event meetings or dinner to quickly move on to the next steps. Face-to-face discussions are always more efficient than emails and phone calls.

Tips: If you are returning to the same city within six months, it might be more convenient to store your leftover samples and decorating materials in a warehouse so you can re-use them in your next trip.

After the Show


9. Follow-up quickly

The sale is not done until it’s done. Don’t forget to send samples and/or call prospects within two days while the memory is still fresh.

If you have taken all your leads digitally and identified them as recommended earlier, you should be able to send instant follow-up emails, from your booth, to keep the conversation going. Otherwise, just make sure it happens shortly after the show.

Tips: to stir your visitors’ memory, it is good practice to add a picture of yourself, your booth or your products in your email. Remember they have visited hundreds of other booths before and after yours, it might be worth reminding them of who you are.

10. Track your results

After the HKTDC Hong Kong Wine & Spirits Fair you will certainly feel energized and excited - you will have talked to many people and heard many promises.

However, you should definitely go over your guts feeling and analyze hard facts: number of leads collected, conversion rate, revenue generated, ROI, etc..

The true impact of a trade show can generally be estimated 6 months after the fair: let’s review it in June 2017!

Tips: some metrics are difficult to calculate and require a lot of data. Consider using an automatic system such as myfairtool to generate a report for you.