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Laws of attraction. We show you 6 ways you can boost your visibility on the trade show floor.

Laws of attraction. We show you 6 ways you can boost your visibility on the trade show floor.

1. Think outside the ‘box’

Just because your floor plan is defined as a square or rectangle doesn’t mean your exhibition stand design needs to adhere to the usual square or box shape. If you want to stand out from the regular exhibition stands around you try using unusual angles or shapes. Anything which catches the eye and looks slightly incongruous will challenge the onlooker and become a point of interest. This will make your stand more noticeable and more memorable.

Try and look at things from a different angle!

2. Create an optical illusion

Anything which creates a slight optical illusion or makes the onlooker do a double take will create impact. Holograms jumping out into the 3D space, structural design which plays with perspective, projection mapping or printed images continuing across different planes all spark curiosity which, in turn creates intrigue and inquisitiveness.

Sometimes making people work a little to get the message can be a very effective marketing ploy. A bit of a riddle, illusion or something which requires processing by the brain will immediately involve the onlooker as participant and instigate an instant engagement with your brand…and that in turn, will make you more memorable.

3. Don’t waste floor space on boring old flooring

It’s an unfortunate truth these days that a lot of people walk around heads down, staring at screens as they move about the place. So, why not take advantage of our insular behaviour by using your floor space as a graphic canvas!  It also creates a great overall visual impact for your whole stand. Print your message or branding or just something eye-catching on your floor.

Graphic materials offer many options of non-slip, fully-removable self-adhesive print media for carpets, tiles or even concrete. A very effective use of graphics can employ the ‘optical illusion’ from our last point by continuing the same image across the different planes of wall and floor creating a fully immersive space.

4. Make lighting a feature

Stand designers are well aware of the power of lighting. Using certain colours and intensity, lighting can evoke different moods, highlight a specific object or area, create focus or even just become a feature in itself. With the progress of AV technology, options are endless. Highly effective sound-responsive or interactive lighting features can be easily incorporated in your overall stand design to great effect.

5. Get creative with materials and textures

Industrial and organic textures are very popular at the moment and particularly on trend is mixing seemingly incongruous textures together such as metals and live greenery, wood and concrete, reflective and high gloss surfaces with matte and brick finishes.

The use of cheaper materials such as cardboard, ply-wood and MDF are also very popular and even making the raw appearance and finish of such materials a feature of the overall showcase.

Not so long ago it was all about hiding all aspects of construction such as joins, hinges or handles and to make everything look as seamless as possible. Now it is all the rage to make any inconsistencies in the structure integral to the design itself. Even highlighting and exaggerating construction elements creating the overall visual impact of ‘Industrial Chic’ – is right on trend!

6. Be theatrical! – Turn your stand into a set

Create a ‘set’ rather than just a stand. Combine the whole thing into an experience to fully immerse your visitors. If your product is generally used in a business environment, why not create an office space to showcase your brand in its natural environment!  Print the walls, print the floors, use all senses, put on demos – create an entire ‘scene’ not just an exhibit.

 

 

 

15 helpful insights to include in your brief so we can design the perfect exhibition stand for you.

15 helpful insights to include in your brief so we can design the perfect exhibition stand for you.

When we start the design process for a new exhibition stand there are always some standard questions we will ask. The more information we can gather, the better we can understand your business, your target audience and your goals for the event – and the more we understand you, the better chance we’ll have of being able to design and configure the perfect exhibition stand for your brand.
It may seem like a lot of information but the more we can get sorted at the initial stages, the easier the whole design process becomes. When you’re adding space for storage or changing the floorplan to fit a ‘meeting area’ after the first design draft the whole process can become time consuming – not to mention expensive!
We want to avoid that as much as you do. We have been at this game for over 30 years now and know very well what all the pitfalls are, so to avoid any issues down the track – and to give ourselves the best opportunity to design a stand-out exhibition stand for you, here is a list of 15 things to think about when sending in your brief.

1. Who Are You
Briefly describe your company; tell us what you sell, how you sell it and to whom. Give us a general outline of your; products, services, staff and customers.
2. What is Your Marketing Objective
What is your reason for being in show – Is it a branding exercise or are you displaying a new or existing product.
Define what your main objective is. Is it to make sales, build relationships or keeping up with competitors?

3. Who is Your Target Audience
Who are you looking to attract to your stand? Define your target demographic as best you can. The more specific you can be – the better we can focus our design to suit and attract your ideal customer.

4. Provide Branding
Provide us with your company logo, corporate colours and any taglines you use.
Include any sub-branding – such as product names & product information.

Provide as much branding material as you have – brand guidelines/graphic files/PMS colours/brochures/web link.

Define your preferred look and feel – stand theme/colours/finishes.

Feel free to use descriptive words such as; youthful, corporate, conservative, diverse, established, funky etc.
Provide as much reference material as you can such as photos of previous stands or events – tell us what worked, what didn’t – what you liked, what you didn’t.
(Images of other spaces that you like the look of can be very helpful.)

5. Know Your Product Specs
Send us a rough footprint of the product you want to display – and any links so we can actually incorporate a true representation into our design .
(Let us know if anything will need to be powered.)

…and other considerations

6. How Will You Interact
How many staff do you intend to have on the stand and what is their role?
Think how attendees will interact with your staff and your brand. Will it be a demonstration, a hands-on experience, a competition, a social media incentive, touchscreen or even a recurring ‘special showcase’ at certain intervals throughout the event. We can offer suggestions if you are unsure.

7. Define Your Floorplan and Flow
Have you thought about how your space will flow? Think about what your main draw-card is and how you want to showcase it. Tell us how you want people to move through your stand.

8. Welcome Area – How will you greet your attendees?
Do you need a counter or more of a discussion area ( – or even an entrance feature if you have the space?)

9. Do you Need a Seating/Meeting Space
Choose a style that will suit your clients/staff conversations ie: will this be a private area, or a relaxed lounge area, café tables and chairs or just a bar table and stools.

10. Storage
What will you need to lock away …and how much space will you need?

11. Flooring
Does the flooring need to be raised to distribute power cables neatly underneath?

12. AV Requirements
Will you require AV – screens?

13. Rigging & Lighting
Tell us what you’ll need in the way of lighting or any rigged banners etc.

14. Catering
Do you intend on having any catering in your space? If so will you require a fridge / coffee machine / space for platters?

15. Budget Restraints
Probably shouldn’t be this low down on the list – but let us know what your budget is and if there is any wriggle room.

Obviously if your budget allows and space permits you can request any optional extras on top of the list here.

Just be aware of any design restrictions for a particular venue. Our designers will work within venue limitations anyway – but be prepared for adjustments if and when needed ( – just in case you want a 4m high banner but the height limit of a venue is 2.4m!)

We can advise on exhibition height limits, venue height restrictions, rigging facilities, loading and venue logistics and any space regulations for any overhead branding if you are unsure.

10 Interactive ideas to help engage your prospects at your next trade show

10 Interactive ideas to help engage your prospects at your next trade show

Getting people to connect with your brand these days can no longer be achieved with purely visual prompts such as signage and advertising, you need to think about encompassing all the senses. To really engage your audience at an exhibition or trade show, you should try and create an authentic and memorable ‘experience’. The aim of the game is to promote an emotional response in your audience – creating brand affinity. You need to get interactive!

The experiential connection at an event such as a trade show will build a devoted following which, in turn will drive sales and build brand loyalty.

Here are 10 interactive ideas for your next exhibition stand which will help to engage your audience:

1. Touchscreens

As with every other element of your exhibit, the technology you use should help your visitors interact and engage with your brand. Giving visitors a tactile prop provides an instant connection. You can use touchscreens to capture lead data, provide information or display a sales presentation ….or even just for fun – such as a quiz or competition.

The best interactive trade show ideas will often appeal to a competitive nature, so offer up a ‘high-score’ prize or set a challenge that involves ongoing collaboration giving you the perfect opportunity to contact your leads again after the show.

2. Prize wheels

Not only are you appealing to a natural, human competitive behaviour with something like a prize-wheel, it also provides a feature – especially if large and colourful and enhanced with lights & sounds. It can be a real drawcard, especially if you have a good ‘spruiker’ to build excitement and engage the crowds. Make sure at least one of the prizes is worth winning ( – and have a backup in case it does get won on the first attempt!)

3. Guessing Games

Another oldie-but-goodie is the ‘guess the jelly beans in the jar’ competition. If you can relate it to your brand or product – even better! For example, if you sell coffee; count the coffee beans.

Don’t be afraid to go large if your product is something like sporting equipment; you could have a bin full of tennis balls or make it a feature such as part of a wall filled with running shoes.

For people to enter, they need to leave their guess along with their contact details – so it’s really just a fun way of collecting lead data.

4. Large scale 3D Reproductions

Australia just loves huge-scale replicas (… Big Banana, Big Lobster etc.) It’s quirky and it’s a bit of fun….but it’s memorable! Particularly if it can be interactive such as the giant mobile phone or the Telstra Touch tab we created a few years ago showing the different apps as 3D dials. Just the motion of turning the dials is so much more effective in communicating the message than if it was just a 2-dimensional print.

5. Functional Working Displays & Equipment

Hands on experience trumps all when it comes to buying decisions. It’s not always obvious how a product works or what it’s capable of without seeing it in action. It depends what you’re selling obviously, but wherever you can, make sure you have enough space on your stand for live demonstrations. If your visitors can witness firsthand how something works, they will be far more likely to part with their money.

6. Professional Demonstrations

Brochures and promotional items are nice, but nothing sells a product quite like a hands-on demonstration. Try to tap into as many of the five senses as you can with your demo and hire a professional if you can.

Professional demonstrators will showcase your product with a bit more zest and it’s often worth the extra spend to hire someone specifically for the occasion. It also leaves you and your staff free to do the real work of collecting leads and making sales.

Keep it short though – attention tends to wane after about 5 – 10 minutes so you need to get the point across by then.

7. Live Celebrity Appearances

Whilst not exactly ‘interactive’ as such – hiring a celebrity as a motivational speaker will have an impact on your visitors. If you can align your brand with someone people admire and respect they will, in turn, project those same feelings onto your brand.

Professional entertainment agencies can let you know who might be available and it will certainly pump up your visitor numbers.

8. 3D Printing to Order

Exhibitors at trade shows have been using 3D printers to draw crowds in such areas as car shows, boat shows, jewellery trade shows and food and cooking demonstrations. Showcasing how 3D technology can be creatively utilised in different areas can be both entertaining and engaging for the observer.

One of the more appealing and fun uses we have seen this idea being employed is the creation of ‘mini-me’ personalised dolls.

9. Responsive Triggers

Shelves that light up when a product is lifted, floors that change colour as they’re walked across, robots who talk to passers-by, speakers offering up information when approached…. technology is offering up endless opportunities for responsive and automated ‘reactions’ which will engage your visitors.

10. Photo Opportunities for Social Media

Like it or loath it, social media plays a big part in the world of advertising these days, so might as well jump on board the bandwagon and get people snapping and posting pics of your exhibition stand on their own social media accounts. Whether you plump for an old-fashioned photo booth, an eye-catching backdrop or just some 3D props and scenery,  getting people to take photos and post on the WWW is a great way to get some free advertising out there and generate a bit of ‘buzz’.

Need more ideas? Contact Exhibitionco today and let us come up with something original and engaging to put your brand in the spotlight at your next event.

 

Read our Tips on how to design a lead generating exhibition stand for your brand.

Read our Tips on how to design a lead generating exhibition stand for your brand.

Exhibitions or Trade shows are an ideal way to generate new leads for your business. Even with all the readily available marketing tools at our disposal these days, meeting face-to-face is still the most effective way to develop a professional relationship. Not only that, but exhibition halls are filled with highly-targeted prospects actively looking to connect within your specific industry.

To help you get the most from your exhibiting experience, we’ve highlighted 5 rules to follow which will help you generate those valuable leads at your next trade show.

Rule #1 First impressions count – Communicate your brand message in 3 seconds or less.

Small - Medium Exhibition Stands

There is nothing more important than making a good solid first impression. Apparently your first opinion of someone forms in only one tenth of a second. With a brand, they say your first opinion takes only one fifth of a second (…..and 94% of this is design related.)

OK, so we know 99 % of statistics are made up on the spot! – but there is certainly some truth in a first impression being formed within a very short space of time. And it is much harder to shake a bad impression once made than it is to create a good one in the first place.

Make sure your exhibition stand communicates your message clearly and succinctly. Don’t confuse your prospects. If you are launching a new product, make the whole display about that. If you are introducing a new brand – then branding should be your focus.

People are essentially lazy and need to be guided as to where to look and how to navigate your stand. When done properly, good design along with clear and engaging graphics will do most of the work for you.

Rule #2 Monkey see Monkey do! – People gravitate towards other people.

 

When you get the choice of a crowded restaurant next to an empty one, people will choose the crowded restaurant. The theory is that it’s more popular so it must be better. The same effect applies to exhibition stands on a busy trade show floor.

No-one likes to feel they are on their own or the odd-man out so they don’t want to be the first to venture onto an empty exhibition stand. People are inherently more comfortable if they are one of the pack.

Some exhibitors will employ “spruikers” to entice people in. But here’s another (….and much cheaper) idea; get your own employees to act like visitors and create a buzz around your stand. Get staff to interact with each other (…but obviously make sure your stand managers are free to engage with the real prospects.)

Rule #3 Interaction is engaging – Give your visitors something to do.

Interaction between your brand and your visitors is beneficial to both parties. If you can get potential customers to employ some kind of physical connection with your brand, it will help them remember you – and you can use the interaction to collect data and information.

Whether it is in the form of a competition where prospects leave their details – or as a ‘hands-on’ demonstration of one of your products or even just a backdrop for photos to upload on social media platforms, anything which involves your visitors interacting and connecting in some way can only be a good thing.

Rule #4 Don’t sell, ‘Gell’ – Show interest in others and they’ll show interest in you.

Don’t just be about the hard sell. Exhibitions and trade shows are all about creating opportunities, networking and solidifying your brand’s position in your industry. Use your time to create new, and nurture existing relationships by actively showing interest in your visitors, your neighbours and even your competitors.

Ask any visitors about their company and where they came from first. Not only is it useful information for you, but they will naturally follow up by asking you the same. This kind of conversational ‘sell’ is a far more natural approach and more effective than the ‘hard sell’.

You might make some mutually beneficial contacts amongst other exhibitors too. Think about any opportunities which could open up if you were to partner with brands selling different products and services but to the same target market.

Rule #5 Follow up Fast – Don’t give your potential customers time to forget who you are.

Follow up on all your leads as soon as you can after the show. The longer you wait the longer they have to forget who you are.

Visitors will have had many interactions at the trade show, and as much as you want to believe that, as an exhibitor you were different and stood out from the rest, it’s tough for those visitors to remember every single name and product once back in the office.

A quick prompt from you could be all it takes to put your business back in the forefront of their mind. Don’t be afraid of reaching out too quickly. The day after the show is not too soon to follow up with potential prospects. Waiting too long will dilute the connection.


If you need help with your next exhibition or trade show contact Exhibitionco today and call on our many years of experience in the exhibition industry.

Why Staff are your most important asset – and how they will Make or Break Your Trade Show Success

Why Staff are your most important asset – and how they will Make or Break Your Trade Show Success

One thing we’ve all really missed during these COVID times is one-on-one contact with others. Although we’ve adapted by moving online for everything including working, education, shopping, socialising and even exercising, we’ve come to realise that nothing is quite like a face-to-face interaction.

Over the last 15 months, we’ve missed our trade shows where thousands of people can get together under one roof, from one industry to discover what’s new, what’s trending and what’s being developed in that particular industry.

Whilst the online platform may reach a huge audience for your business, a trade show is the only place to reach a truly concentrated audience of focussed prospects face-to-face.

With things ramping up and restrictions slowly being lifted around the world, we’re seeing a real enthusiasm for live events again. As businesses are getting their confidence back, trade shows are looking very attractive as a way to re-energise.

This being the case, it is imperative that any person representing your business at a trade show knows their role inside-out, and understands what it means to be an ambassador for your brand.

Your staff should be reinforcing a positive image of your brand at all times whether on the stand or walking about the hall and even on break times. On the trade show floor they are your most valuable marketing tool. They should be impeccably turned out, knowledgeable, professional and able to relate to and converse with strangers well.

One of the main aspects of the job of manning exhibition stands is the ability to relate well, listen to the customer and make them feel they have ‘come to the right place’. These are not necessarily easy or natural attributes for everyone. It may not fit with the personality of your existing specialist or expert. So, by all means have your experts on stand-by for any tricky technical questions, but have someone who exudes confidence and affability as your first point of contact.

You may need to consider hiring someone specifically as a ‘spruiker’ to attract people onto your stand, or at the very least spend some time and money on training existing staff on how they should professionally and adequately represent your brand in public.

And just as you carefully plan the appearance of your exhibition stand down to details such as colour theme, branding, graphics, lighting and flooring to create a cohesive brand message you’ll need to make sure your staff and their appearance tie in with your overall theme too.

Some form of identity which ties in with your stand design whether an entire uniform, colour theme, individual clothing item such as a t-shirt or cap or even just a badge with your logo is a good idea. It makes it easier for visitors to connect your staff with your stand.

Knowledge of your products, prices, specials, and particularly your goals for the event are a must for all your stand staffers. These are the people your prospective customers will be dealing with and asking questions of and they may not be willing to wait until another salesperson follows up their enquiries. (There will be plenty of your competitors in close vicinity who will be more than happy to jump on those prospects looking for an answer or a sale immediately!)

With all the planning and effort going into design and build of your exhibition stand, staffing can often be left as a bit if an afterthought but with the best looking stand in the world, you won’t get any new customers without that personal touch. Make staffing a priority and something which is considered from the offset as part of your overall exhibiting plan.

Top Ten Reasons Why Exhibiting at a trade show is the best bang for your Marketing buck.

Top Ten Reasons Why Exhibiting at a trade show is the best bang for your Marketing buck.

1.  To Showcase your Services

Trade shows offer vendors a highly targeted audience within their respective industries. Professionals in those industries are motivated to attend trade shows knowing they will find the latest technology and concepts currently influencing their profession. Your particular services will be on show for decision makers in your industry who actually demand them.

2.  To Launch a New Product

If you are in the process of launching a new product or idea into the market, there really is no better platform than a trade show where you will get maximum exposure within a highly focussed group and the opportunity to connect directly with the people within your industry who matter.

3. To Boost Brand Visibility

It doesn’t matter if you’re one of the bigger players in your industry, a small start-up company, or a niche supplier, you can still establish a presence as a leader or influencer in your specific market by intelligent positioning of your brand. Play to your strengths and make your brand known to both your customers and peers. You want people to know who you are.

4.  To Meet your Target Audience Face to Face

Most marketing avenues channel towards the objective of singling out a potential customer for one-on-one contact; whether that be in the form of generating incoming calls to your business through advertising or encouraging on-line searchers via SEO to fill out forms leaving contact details which can be followed up by your sales team.

Trade shows offer up the absolutely ideal scenario of your potential customers actually coming to you! It is a unique opportunity to increase your brand exposure and connect to consumers on a personal level from the get-go. Nothing beats a hands-on demonstration and eye-to-eye contact when it comes to selling. Allowing your customers to experience your product or services first hand will increase interest in your brand and drive sales.

5.  To Expand your Customer Database

Not only do you reap the benefit of meeting your customers face to face, you could also potentially meet hundreds of them! The amount of highly targeted professionals in your industry under one roof for a limited amount of time is an unparalleled opportunity to increase your viable customer contact list. Make sure you have some form of data collection and processing in place so you don’t miss out on any of those hot leads.

6.  To Research Developments in your Industry

It is important that your brand stays relevant within your industry and the only way you can ensure that is for your business to stay informed of any new products or ideas which may be influencing the industry as a whole. Not only are trade shows the ideal platform from which to market your brand, they also offer up an opportunity to learn about your competitors, find out what’s working, network with your peers and potentially embark upon mutually beneficial relationships which could expand your supply chain.

7.  To Keep an Eye on the Competition

Bigger players in the industry are generally more likely to spend a bit more money at a trade show. They will have the big glossy stands in the centre of the hall. Often they will take a few more risks introducing new technology or ideas which will influence the market as a whole. For this reason it is the ideal opportunity to observe what your competitors are doing so you can gauge the direction your industry market is likely to follow. You can also apply any successful tactics you witness from other brands to your own business. Apart from anything else, being amongst your peers and a group of like-minded people can be highly motivating.

8.  To Expand your Distributor Network

Not all other exhibitors will be in direct competition to you, many will be from other parts of the industry food chain. You may discover new and upcoming businesses hitherto unknown, which could be highly compatible to your own business module. Trade shows are great networking opportunities within your specific industry.

9.  To Expand your Industry Contacts

Even your competitors at a trade show could end up as friends. You never know who you might meet, who might turn out to be mutually beneficial business-wise. Maybe you sell the same product but in different parts of the country – you could come to an agreement to supply your own area and recommend each other to those outside your ‘home turf’. Maybe you can team up with another business selling parts which work in tandem with your product – you could sell as a package and both benefit from each other’s customer database.

 10.  To Obtain direct Feedback and Opinion

There are businesses out there whose sole function is to provide other businesses with feedback on their brand or product. Honest feedback from your customers as to what they need and how they see your brand is one of the most valuable resources you can get when it comes to marketing. It should influence your whole business structure moving forward. 

Trade shows present a unique opportunity to receive real-time feedback from a highly targeted group of people. Apart from face-to-face contact, you could also conduct a short survey, involving some kind of interaction on your stand – maybe rewarding participants with an incentive such as a competition or giveaways. The data you collect will be invaluable.