How LinkedIn Can Drive Traffic To Your Trade Show Exhibit

LinkedIn has become one of the most important ways for professionals to connect with each other. If you don’t already have a profile, then you can think of it as Facebook for people who are more interested in forging business connections than gossiping and sharing pictures. Once you have a profile, use these strategies to increase traffic at your next┬átrade show display exhibit.

Connect With People in Your Industry

connect with people on linkedin

Image via Flickr by AmCham Krakow

Start by connecting with other people who work in your industry. You might own businesses that compete with each other, but making these connections offers mutual benefits. After all, you want your entire industry to thrive. You can encourage that by forming connections and supporting each other.

Use these connections to encourage people in your industry to attend regional and national trade shows. They may not even know the event is happening. Sending a quick message could add a new group to the show.

Take Steps to Build a Bigger Network

Image via Flickr by Dizzy-one

Making connections with people you already know also lays a foundation that will help you branch out to build a larger network.

When you connect with your colleagues and competitors on LinkedIn, you gain some access to their networks. Browse these secondary connections to find people you want in your network. When you find them, send an invite. Most people will accept because they want more connections, too.

Don’t forget to find LinkedIn Groups to join that are in your niche or are created by the trade show conference. A fantastic opportunity to connect with people.

Turn LinkedIn Connections Into Twitter Followers

Image via Flickr by BuzzFarmers

LinkedIn is a great way to communicate with professionals, but it isn’t very fast. No one compulsively checks their LinkedIn messages unless they’re desperate to find a new job position. If you want to send quick updates to your LinkedIn friends to boost traffic to your exhibit during a trade show, you have to get them to follow you on Twitter.

There are a couple of techniques to try. First, ask them if they have a Twitter account that you can follow. When you follow them, they might follow you in return.

Second, link your Twitter account to other social networking platforms. If someone sees an interesting tweet posted to your LinkedIn account, then they might follow you to see what else you have to say. Of course, that means you need something worth reading. Spend time developing your Twitter content. Those 140 characters should take you more than a minute to write.

What’s the most effective tool you have found for boosting trade show traffic? Does LinkedIn make your list?

About Timothy Carter

Timothy Carter is a digital marketing consultant. An internet marketing veteran 18+ years, Timothy has experience helping small business, solo-preneurs in both B2B and B2C markets dramatically increase their organic and social media traffic to their businesses. Currently the Director of Business Development for the Seattle-based agency, AudienceBloom. When not writing for MarketingLand, SmallBizTrends, MarketingProfs or working, he's enjoying life as a father, husband, playing disc golf, enjoys a good cigar, drinking Kona coffee and making plans for his next extended trip to Hawaii.


  1. Erika Goldberg says:

    Very helpful information thank you so much for sharing. Just wanted to mention that the ‘events’ feature is no longer supported on Linked in. I looked for it and couldn’t find it and then searched their help center and found out that they took it away.

  2. Hello Tim,

    There’s a secret weapon for using LinkedIn for trade shows: your company sales force. First, build a microsite that says all the great things you will be offering at your next trade show. Then send your sales force an email with step-by-step instructions on how they can post an update on their LinkedIn account that shares the link to that page. It works wonders, as virtually all your sales force has a LinkedIn account, and many will have connections to their best clients and prospects, who may be attending the show.

    Worked great for us at our last show!

    Mike Thimmesch

Soooo...what are you waiting for? Leave a comment. :)