Should you hold a press conference?

Big stage. Lights and music. Excitement in the air. We get it – press conferences are pretty cool.

They also can be an effective way to introduce your company’s new product or make other major announcements as part of Work Truck Week®. Many press conferences attract crowds of media from around North America and beyond, helping generate extensive coverage.

But did you know press conferences are just one of many ways to reach media and share your news during Work Truck Week? Other tactics can result in the same or better coverage while requiring less time, planning and expense.

Before you automatically submit your Work Truck Week press conference application, ask yourself a few important questions, including

  • Will our announcement impact the entire industry?
  • Have we done something no company has done before?
  • Who is our target audience and which media outlets can connect us with that audience?
  • What do we want to accomplish with a press conference?
  • Do we have the time and resources to plan and host an effective event?
  • Is there something about our announcement that necessitates making it in person?

Sometimes, exhibitors can accomplish the same goals and reach their intended audience without a press conference. Here are some other options to consider.

Schedule booth meetings
While your news is important, it might not be relevant to every journalist attending Work Truck Week. Identify which media you most want to reach. These should be outlets read by your target customer audience and might include magazines in which you advertise, websites you watch for important industry news, outlets that have covered your news in the past or publications you know your competitors are reaching.

If you only have a handful of target media outlets, you might find it more effective to meet with these editors individually in your booth. Booth meetings give you a unique opportunity to share your news in a more engaging and conversational way than at a press conference. Editors will have more time to ask questions, learn key details about your new product and shoot their own photos or videos. In addition, these meetings help build strong business relationships that could result in more coverage in the future.

Send out a press release
If you want to reach a wider audience, and can share your news effectively in writing, a press release with photos or video is another alternative to a press conference. Consider sending a release in advance of Work Truck Week to announce the new products you’ll have on display. This alerts media and customers that you’ll be introducing something new at the event, so they can plan to stop by to learn more. You could also send a release during Work Truck Week to give the news more timeliness and help drive traffic to your booth. You can combine this tactic with editor booth meetings.

Distribute press kits through Pressroom
Many editors covering Work Truck Week use the Pressroom as a quiet place to work on stories, re-energize or grab some lunch. Editors also use the Pressroom to gather exhibitor press materials to get leads on new products and stories they might otherwise miss.

A press kit should include press release(s), photo(s) and/or video(s), and anything else that can help media tell your story, such as case studies, company backgrounders, contact information or technical data. Press kits can be printed, digital or in the cloud. Exhibitors can ship or drop off their press kits to the Pressroom, Room 243, at Indiana Convention Center.

We recommend providing 50 copies of your press kit, whether in a folder or on a memory stick. If your kit is online, consider providing a tabletop sign (no larger than 8½ x 11 inches) with the URL for media to visit.

Providing press kits in the Pressroom may help expose your company and products to new audiences. Every year, more than 100 editors, reporters, writers, videographers and publishers representing 600 media outlets attend Work Truck Week. Chances are that someone could learn about your company for the first time this year.

Read more tips on preparing and delivering your press kits.

Share news with NTEA
Take advantage of free coverage offered by NTEA. Be sure to share your press releases and press kits with Summer Marrs, NTEA senior director of communications & public relations, for potential use on worktruckweek.com and in NTEA News. Clearly indicate any embargo restrictions when sending your news.

Next steps
If, after reviewing all these options, you decide a press conference is the most effective choice for your company, complete and submit the press conference application by Dec. 3, 2021. Note, all press conferences and media events scheduled during Work Truck Week must be approved in advance by Show Management. Approval is not guaranteed. As a service to exhibitors and media, NTEA works to ensure the most newsworthy announcements are scheduled for the limited number of available press conference slots.

Work Truck Week exhibitors can request a list of registered media. To request a list, or if you have questions about any of these options, contact Kristen Simpson, president of Simpson Communications, kristen@simpsoncomm.com.