Industry trade shows provide NELMA with multiple outreach opportunities beyond simply staffing an exhibit space. Most trade show events frequently have representatives from important trade press and other media outlets in attendance. In these situations, NELMA’s goal is to maximize these opportunities and schedule as many face-to-face meetings with editors and writers as possible during the event. Relationship-building is the bedrock of successful media relations. Trade shows provide the time and location where NELMA can meet with editors one on one, share pertinent marketing program and Association information, and build that critical professional friendship for the future.
Example: At the International Builders’ Show (IBS) in January, NELMA exhibited as part of the SLB’s Wood, Naturally booth. Prior to the show, Kim Drew, NELMA’s PR Agency, pitched information about the exhibit to key media and invited them to make booth appointments to learn more about topics of importance to the Northeastern and Great Lakes softwood lumber industry. We shared information on Norway Spruce, Eastern White Pine case histories and projects, and the wood industry as a whole. NELMA’s display even included a panel of “shiplap”, a wood term at its zenith within the home design world! Over the course of the three-day show, NELMA met with eight different trade magazines and one TV show.
Impact: Media-wise, this was NELMA’s most successful trade show yet as relationships have now been established with several new editors that came by the exhibit, in addition to deepening our connections with other trade press professionals. Follow-up is underway on several news article ideas and television show possibilities.
Next month: An update on Norway Spruce public relations efforts.