A Trade Show Success Story


Pengiun MailerLytron, a prominent thermal products manufacturer, acquired a small chiller company to expand its product line. Although this company was well known in the thermal industry, all Lytron’s products were for controlling heat, and the company was an unknown player in the chiller marketplace.

Yet they did have something that most other chiller companies did not — they were an established high-tech products manufacturer with the capabilities to handle the production and engineering needs of the OEM market.

The Challenge

Since most chillers are sold in the laboratory industry and this was a new market for Lytron, the key to success would be to introduce this new manufacturer to the laboratory science industry in a big way at the industry’s biggest trade show — Pittcon.

Lytron had never attended this important show, and was unknown to Pittcon attendees. How would they stand out among the crowd of better-known chiller manufacturers?

The Plan

Melanie Dukas advised Lytron that the best way to meet these challenges was to do something unique. Something that would drive traffic to the company’s booth, and get Pittcon attendees to notice the new chiller manufacturer.

Before the show, Melanie’s company, Marketing Options, developed a trade show promotion with the following elements:

  • Pre-Show Mailer inviting Pittcon attendees to the company’s booth to get a free Dove bar (ice cream), and to discuss their company’s chiller needs.
  • 1/4 Advertisement in an laboratory publication announcing the company’s new chiller line, and its upcoming presence at Pittcon.
  • Four-Page Product Survey designed and implemented by Marketing Options in order to assess the needs of chiller buyers.
  • Press Kit covering the company’s chiller line, and its upcoming presence at Pittcon.
  • Over-Sized Posters and Banners for the booth.

These materials positioned Lytron as a reliable, high-quality supplier of chillers for the chiller industry that “won’t leave you out in the cold”. Complementing this message was a visual graphic of a penguin. 

Together, the penguin and Dove bars were a metaphor for the company’s new chiller technology.

The Results

When Pittcon opened, attendees headed straight for Lytron’s booth with penguin mailers in hand. 

Each potential customer spent, on average, 15 minutes at the booth filling out the product survey in exchange for a free Dove bar. Pittcon provided Lytron with a freezer full of Dove bars so the participants could get their ice cream right away.

All of these prospects left the company’s booth happy. Not only did they discover a new manufacturer with the capabilities to fulfill their chiller needs, they also walked away with a free Dove bar!

Most importantly, the survey gave Lytron’s engineers the information they needed to re-engineer their chiller line to better meet the needs of the chiller market.

Thus, Marketing Options helped the chiller manufacturer meet its marketing goals in three ways:
• Customer inquiries were generated.
• New business relationships were established.
• The company gained a major foothold in the chiller marketplace.

The Bottom Line Results

As a result of the survey that Marketing Options initiated, and the re-engineering it inspired, the new chiller manufacturer was presented with several quarter million dollar sales opportunities with OEM suppliers. 
In addition to making a big splash at Pittcon, Lytron also gained recognition with the media. The chiller press release was picked up by over 20 trade magazines and the company was asked to write an article for R & D Magazine, specifically focusing on its cooling technology for laboratories.