Face to face marketing: Swiss Women’s Expo

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lisa women expoNowadays, when a company is formed, it will normally create a website, a Facebook page, a LinkedIn page and other forms of online presence. With all these, you might ask, is there really any need for personal contact with customers when we can meet them online at our convenience? Is face-to-face marketing still an important tool for a business? What does it offer that you cannot get from your regular correspondence online or by telephone?

When a company creates its online pages, it gains followers and “likes”- and some of these translate into customers. However, this does not mean you are reaching all the customers you can reach. You still need to have some contact with them in the physical world.

Why face to face marketing is still necessary

It is important for clients to see that you are taking the time to meet them in person and that they can ask all the questions they need about your services, without sending numerous emails or calling. This gives you the opportunity to make sure they are aware of all of the products and services you offer; and you might even hear how you compare to the competition. Face-time with your customers can help uncover essential information and provide competitive intelligence.

What is the Women’s Expo

For the past two years, Lisa Chuma has been organizing in Zurich an annual opportunity for women-owned businesses to meet their potential clients. The businesses vary in size; some started a while back and already have clients, others are new and are interested in creating a client base. We interviewed Lisa to ask her about the event and what she thought about the importance of this face-to-face meeting opportunity.

There is an added value to your client looking into your eyes as you explain how a service or product can change their lives.

Lisa believes in the power of face-to-face marketing. “No amount of social media presence can substitute for a day of explaining your products/services to potential clients”, she says. According to Lisa, trust is built in person, and relationships built in person last longer than those that exist only in the world of social media. You cannot communicate certain messages over the phone or by email.

What else the Expo offers

The additional advantage the Women’s Expo offers is the opportunity to establish collaborations between the businesses. Partnerships might involve small businesses in different parts of Switzerland that offer the same service, or two companies offering something totally different, or just someone who knows someone who needs the services.

Lisa explains that in the first two editions of the Expo, she observed that most of the exhibitors did not take full advantage of the opportunity to market their products. It is important for her clients to realize that unlike a Christmas market, the majority of the Expo’s visitors come for information and not necessarily to make instantaneous purchases.

It is for this reason that Lisa decided to offer a course to train the participating entrepreneurs. The course will focus on the art of using the Expo to achieve the best marketing results for the business. The exhibitors will be taught how to explain their offer to visitors at their booths, how to obtain those all-important contacts and how to follow up later on. This will enable the first-time exhibitors as well as the returning ones to make the best of the opportunity and get good value for their money.

In addition to offering the chance for women-entrepreneurs to meet and collaborate among themselves, the Women’s Expo also gives them an opportunity to interact with their patrons. They can thus create lasting bonds with potential customers and collect feedback from existing clients.

Sources : Lisa Chuma

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