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It’s good to talk! The value of face-to-face communications

February 16, 2015 | Laura Baines


In today’s time-poor world, where we’re constantly bombarded with information, exhibitions have become the one place where this rare form of personal contact can be of great value.

While digital technology is an integral part of the marketing landscape, email or text messaging can seem intrusive and, with the increasing prevalence of impersonal digital communications, a face-to-face meeting with a customer provides a refreshing – and often welcome -change.

Human beings by nature are a social species and, while it’s handy to communicate via a click or the touch of a button, sitting down and actually having a chat over a coffee can provide us with powerful insights.

There is great value and power in face-to-face communications, so here are three opportunities where I believe face-to-face communications can help drive your ROI:

Opportunity to drive new business and up-sell

A well thought-out communication programme can help drive people to your exhibition stand, but never underestimate the power of a handshake. Exhibitions offer an unparalleled level of customer engagement and can build positive personal interactions.

Incorporating live product demonstrations or audio visual presentations on your stand provides a point of interest and opportunities to up-sell new products and services, which perhaps hadn’t been on a customer’s radar.

Customers can also give companies valuable feedback on a new product or service which is invaluable information for future new product development.

Building trust and forging new relationships

Face-to-face communication fosters trust between buyers and suppliers. Imagine trying to sell a very complicated piece of equipment that needs a detailed explanation. You are far better talking a buyer through the intricate product details face to face than on email.

Two-way communication enables customers to ask questions about a product or service, while an exhibitor can find out more about a customer’s objective.

Conversation naturally provides a multitude of subtle nuances that simply fail to translate across the digital airwaves and can forge long-lasting business relationships.

Expert Knowledge

Events allow companies to flex their business know-how. Imagine if you’re an exhibitor surrounded by competitors: how are you going to stand out amongst all that noise?

Easy: become the expert in your field and make sure that all your staffers are fully briefed and clued-up about your products, services and target audience.

Ultimately, before leaving your stand, customers should feel well informed, ready to place that all important order, and confident they’re dealing with experts.