The Secret to Attracting Media to Your Trade Show Booth

what-makes-your-company-unique2Most trade shows offer an excellent opportunity to meet with media. Media are at the show looking for the hottest products and trends, and of course you are highlighting your latest products and possibly featuring your leading experts.

However, especially at large trade shows, getting media’s attention can be challenging. They have a lot of ground to cover in a short amount of time, and everyone is vying for their attention. We have a few secrets to help you land on the short list of scheduled interviews.

1. Request the Media RSVP List – Inquire about what media are planning to attend the show. If you are an exhibitor, contact the show management and request the media RSVP list. Be sure to ask for updates if they are still working to secure media RSVPs.

2. Cross Check the RSVP List – Don’t rely solely on the media RSVP list that the trade show provides. It’s a good first step to gauge how many media plan to attend the show, but still add key media contacts you target regularly who you think might be interested in attending the show.

3. Why Should Media Care? – Start documenting the unique products or technologies that will be highlighted at your the booth. What is unique about these products and/or technologies, and why will media be interested? Consider any demos or presentations that will be taking place as well.

4. Invite Media – Once you craft your pitch, contact media about a month in advance and invite them to your booth. The goal is to secure a scheduled interview on a specific day and time.

It is not uncommon for media to communicate they will simply drop by the booth when they can. Don’t be discouraged by this, as most do tend to stick to their word. However, the benefit of securing a scheduled interview is you can prep your pitch/spokesperson and ensure he/she provides some good quality content.

5. Do Your Homework – Once an interview is schedule or a media contact commits to dropping by, conduct some research to determine what this contact might be most interested in. Check editorial calendars for upcoming content that your company or spokesperson can offer insight on. This will help you be more prepared and hopefully turn the interview into media coverage.

Not all trade shows have good media attendance, but you can certainly expect the large industry shows to attract media. The key to landing media interviews is to effectively prepare and attract the media’s attention far enough in advance so you don’t run into issues with full schedules.

Jennifer Manocchio


After starting her career with Edelman in Chicago, Jennifer joined Sweeney and quickly established herself as an exceptional industry innovator. In 2004, she opened Sweeney’s first full-service office outside of Cleveland and quickly rose through the ranks to become agency president. Jen leads by example and without fear. She has been critical to agency growth throughout the past decade and continues to lead the agency into the future.