The start of the academic year for many students marks the beginning of a thrilling journey into the world of higher education, and what better way to kick off this adventure than by attending the much-anticipated Freshers' Fair?
Freshers Fairs are arguably one of the most favourable events for any student, as it opens the door to a plethora of opportunities for their individual interests, through society sign-ups, the opportunity to connect with businesses around their city and a host of free goodies and giveaways from brands attending.
Each business comes well-prepped with an array of branded giveaways, ready to draw in the eager freshers, who are looking for great deals and bargains.
A fair presents a fantastic opportunity for your brand to present itself to a whole new audience. If you’re attending the fresher's fair this year, you’ll want to ensure you're well-prepped with plenty of print to help you leverage this opportunity and create a buzz around your brand.
Organising a successful stall
Your stall is the first thing that will be seen by passing students, so you’ll want to make sure it stands out and draws people in from the get-go.
You can make your stall look super engaging by bringing a roller banner which you can pop up alongside it, showcasing exactly what your brand is about and what it offers. You can include posters or and A-frame containing information about your offers, prices or anything else that is happening to help entice the students to approach and find out more.
Don't forget the essentials! Flyers and business cards are great for giving to students as they can easily pick them up and take them away with them, keeping your brand at the forefront of their minds.
Top Tip: You’ll want to include good-quality pictures and your social media handles on your prints to encourage the readers to follow your brand or tag you!
You'll also want to look at dressing your stall. From colourful branded tablecloths, to confetti and merchandise you'll want something to help you stand out from the rest of the vendors.
To really stand out you could even look at showcasing video content of your brand including showreels, experiences from current customers, interviews and user-generated content at the back of your stall on a TV or large screen.
The best things in life are free
Nothing will bring students to your stall like a freebie! It’s a good idea to include some sort of free promotional item or merch on your stall to help increase engagement. This could be anything from branded merchandise to food samples, pens to prints! If you do decide to give away any sort of food item, you’ll just want to make sure you’re displaying what it is and if it contains any allergens.
Sign here, please
The main function of a freshers fair is to connect your business with new and potential customers. So you can leverage this opportunity, you’ll want to ensure you’re capturing their details which can later be used in your marketing efforts. You can encourage attendees to fill out forms with their contact information including email addresses for you to then use in your email campaigns, increasing your reach and possibly sales. You can incentivise this with more freebies for participation.
Up for a challenge?
A great way to increase engagement at your stall is to include some sort of activity as part of your experience. You can use this to generate interest and social media hype by including games such as ‘Guess how many sweets are in this jar’ where you can have a form for people to fill out to write their guesses. Popular alternatives also include games such as Spin the Wheel or raffle tickets where students get the chance to win a prize. You can also use these activities as a reason to collect emails to contact the winners, which can be used in your marketing campaigns in the future.
Having a good range of merchandise and giveaways will help contribute to an increased success rate for your fresher's fair. Almost all stalls will have giveaway items in their armour, and you’ll want to ensure yours are unique and of interest. But don't worry, we’ve put together a list of creative ideas on things you can include to have your audience rushing to your stall
A freebie they’ll lap up. You can give out tickets to local events or a free drinks or snacks tokens if you’re in the hospitality industry.
You can hand out flyers with ‘2 for 1’ or ‘free entry with this flyer’ style deals. to entice students to drop by.
Almost all students need a diary or planner to organise their hectic schedules, give them out as branded freebies in exchange for their email.
Tote bags are great because they're multi-use items! Students will need something to carry all their freebies in and they’ll also be able to use it throughout their time at uni, from carrying books to their weekly shop!
Who doesn't love a water bottle? Ideal for taking to lessons or the gym, you're bound to get freshers to your stall if you're giving out handy water bottles.
A walking billboard - stick your logo on a t-shirt to provide a direct way to get your brand name out there.
Arguably the most important part of a successful freshers fair is staying organised and ensuring you’re well-staffed for the event. You may want to hire staff or organise existing staff to man your stand, wearing branded t-shirts while they do so.
You’ll also want to ensure that you’ve planned for each day that you’ll be attending the fair. This may include
- Creating and setting a budget
- Arranging transport
- Planning and designing your stall space
- Making sure everything you need is organised and ordered in advance
- Ensuring you have enough of everything you need including promotional prints, freebies and merch to prevent you from running out
- Making sure everyone attending is aware of the itinerary and what's expected of them during the fair
- Making sure any equipment is in working order in advance
A freshers fair can be a fantastic way to advertise your brand and gain new customers as a new wave of people enters your city. Now you have all the essentials down you can go away and ensure you’re properly prepared to leverage a new term and drive traffic towards your brand.