Our Best Tips, Tricks & Secrets for a Successful Trade Show

Does it seem to you that some businesses have it all together when exhibiting at a trade show? Almost like they have the secret recipe for networking and bringing back a positive return on investment.

Their secret is it’s no secret at all, it’s simply this:

A successful trade show is measured by
how much effort you want to put into it.

Yes you read that right. Sounds simple, or is it. Being that we are a trade show display company, we’ve attended many and have seen a thing or two at different trade shows. So here’s our best tips, tricks & secrets for a successful trade show.

#1 Find out who will be attending
Most trade shows provide an attendee or exhibitor list in advance. This is very valuable information. Before the show, figure out which contacts you think may be interested in your business. Consider reaching out to let them know you’d love to meet them and encourage them to stop by your booth. Don’t make the mistake of spamming their inbox by selling your product or service right away though. Keep the first contact with them cordial and personal.

#2 Be physically prepared
Trade shows are known to be draining, mentally and physically. If you’re an extrovert, you might not have any trouble with the busy, sometimes chaotic atmosphere. But if you’re more of an introvert, you could find your energy depleted halfway through the day.

Get a good night’s rest before the event and stay hydrated during the event. Steer clear of alcohol if it’s being served as this will just wear you down. You’re going to be standing and interacting with people for hours on end, so try to get out for some fresh air to clear your mind and get your blood pumping.

#3 First impressions are everything – no, really

Make a first good impression

Yes, we are going to say it…You never get a second chance to make a first impression. Studies show that your first impression has a high correlation with the long-term status of your relationship. Our first opinion of someone forms in only one tenth of a second and you only have 3 seconds to grab the attention of potential customers.

This doesn’t only apply to your personality and appearance though, it also applies to your trade show display set-up. We realize not all companies have a big trade show budget, but one thing that should never be left to chance is the trade show display representing your company.

Other than the timing of your first impression, whatever you do don’t sit down in your booth. You should always be face-to-face when greeting attendees as this implies you’re excited to be there, which makes them excited to be there. If you need a break, walk away and sit outside or sit in a common area. And don’t leave drinks and food around the booth either.

#4 Make your trade show booth stand out
Most trade shows will provide you with a 6ft or 8ft folding table, but they do not provide a table cover. Make sure to get one that complements your display and represents your company’s image and color scheme nicely. Arrange the items on your trade show display table in levels. Put the larger items at the rear, shorter items in front of those, and even shorter items in front of those. It make seem obvious, but you want to make sure your table looks organized.

Use a stand-alone presentation board, table top display, pop up display or banner stand to highlight your business with photos, and also show how clients can benefit by using your products or services. Be creative with photos and designs t insure your company will stand out from your neighbors. Just be sure your company name and logo are more than obvious within the design. Your goal is to get noticed, not ignored.

#5 Welcome your visitors with a smile

“Show us your smile”

This is quite possibly the most important tip: be friendly and inviting. Say “Hello” to those walking by or that turn and look toward you or your trade show booth. Strike up a conversation, small talk and be sure to have a short introductory speech ready. And remember to have fun!

#6 Use video or slide show presentations to draw attention
Develop a video or slideshow presentation to display on TV monitors in your booth. There are various stands and racks available for mounting flat screens for trade shows or you can rent or borrow this equipment if you don’t already have it. Your visitors will find this visually appealing, and it will draw their attention into your booth.

#7 Have plenty of giveaways – and business cards
Be sure to pack plenty of trade show giveaways such as brochures, pens, magnets, and anything else that has your company name and/or logo on it. The use of a display rack for showing your flyers, specials, brochures, and such is an inexpensive way to organize the clutter. And don’t forget your business cards! Your business card is basically an invitation for extended conversation beyond the trade show and at the very least a reminder of who you are.

Most people who attend trade shows are expecting to take home some sort of goodie. If you’re looking for something different to give away, pre-packaged food with your company contact information on it is an easy giveaway.

#8 Follow up fast
Follow up with leads a day or two after the show. It’s the most dreadful job after exhibiting at a show but it is also the one task that allows you to rate your ROI and decide of a particular trade show is worth going to in the future. Get back with people quickly. Even better, set appointments during the show so you are on your prospects calendar. Trust us, the longer you wait the longer they have to forget who you are and what you said.

It might seem odd, but people really don’t have many interactions at trade shows. And as much as you want to believe yours were different or epic, trade shows can be somewhat of a whirlwind and it’s tough to remember everyone’s name and product after the show.

Final Tip
Give it your all, every time. Take plenty of time to prepare, because trade shows are a big investment so make it worth it. We understand standing at a trade show sounds easy; but it’s far from easy. It requires a ton of planning and hard work, but it’s also a beneficial marketing opportunity that can provide huge benefits if done right. Plan well, have fun, and be open to interacting with new people, because you never know who you’ll meet.

Finally, after it’s all said and done, learn from your mistakes, keep tabs on what worked and what didn’t, make adjustments, and get ready for the next show!

Face-to-Face Marketing in a Digital World

Social media and online advertising are certainly proving to be the wave of the future. We’re more connected than ever before, yet there is still disconnect when it comes to marketing. In many instances digital marketing is a super convenient way to get your brand and products in front of a large target audience, but not without some challenges. Overcrowding on some social media platforms tends to make it difficult for brands to engage without increasing their marketing budget.

In reality, having a presence online and face-to-face should both be an essential part of your marketing strategy. However, when trying to instill value in your product or service there’s only one technique that works time and time again…networking. Yes, good ol’ fashion, face-to-face networking! And can you guess where the easiest place to do this is? Well, a trade show of course!

NETWORKING WORKS, PERIOD.

Maybe you love it or hate it, embrace it or avoid it, networking is quite possibly one of the simplest, most effective tools to market yourself or business. But, the effectiveness is up to you! Many of us approach networking with good intentions – think of that stack of business cards from your last trade show collecting dust in your desk that you haven’t touched. Or the hundreds of LinkedIn contacts you’ve actually never met (or chatted with for that matter).

Don’t worry you’re not alone! We all know how incredibly important face-to-face marketing is, along with community involvement, yet we all try so hard to avoid it. The hard truth is it’s possible networking might be the missing piece your marketing strategy needs to boost your efforts and see a spike in sales.

FACT: 74% of trade show attendees say that they have a more
positive opinion about the company, brand, product or service
being promoted after the event.
Source: EventMarketer.com

Have you considered attending or exhibiting at a trade show yet? Trade shows are all about building relationships – simply getting to know someone. Asking questions and really listening to determine if they are in fact the potential client you’ve been looking for. There’s something special about being present, making eye contact with someone and showing them the confidence you have in your company.

Rather than try to cut through all the social media noise, start by attending a few local events or business-to-business trade shows. Just remember to keep an open mind – you’re creating long term business relationships here, so it won’t be a fast process.

BUT BE SOCIAL ONLINE, TOO.

There’s no better place to network than at a trade show. So by combining the social aspect of marketing before or after your trade show can most certainly benefit you as well. Here’s a few examples:

Before the trade show: connect with your existing clients online or on social media to let them know you’ll be attending and would like to meet up.
At the trade show: take a pictures with clients (new and old) at your booth to build awareness about your show presence.
Before the trade show: Use social networks to gauge your clients most pressing needs and interests.
At the trade show: Speak with clients about these needs to create a more valuable in-person experience.

Digital communication provides a great opportunity to keep customers and prospects engaged long after the trade show doors have closed.

FINAL THOUGHTS.

Whether its online or social, marketing should always be consistent and always follow through on your brand awareness. Consistency builds trust, and in turn a long lasting business relationship. It’s this constant communication that will keep the dialogue with prospects and customers fresh and lively year-round.

In the end it all comes down to positive audience engagement, both digitally and in-person.


DID YOU KNOW: YOU ONLY HAVE 3 SECONDS TO CAPTURE THE ATTENTION OF ATTENDEES?

Now’s your chance to get creative! Since 1994, our family owned company offers quality trade show display products, providing exceptional customer service to each and every one of our customers worldwide. Lucky for you we have “all things trade show” in one convenient place online – www.AffordableDisplays.com.

So start envisioning your own trade show display today. And the best part is we’ll be here to guide you throughout the entire process!

8 Tech Savvy Ways to Spend Your Remaining Trade Show Budget

So you’ve made all the necessary purchases for a successful trade show season, but you’ve come in under budget (and your boss is high fiving you). This is great, however if the money isn’t spent it may not generate great returns on your investment. We have some seriously savvy ideas to help spend your remaining budget wisely to benefit your current and future trade show efforts.

We understand, having money left to spend can feel too good to be true. Maybe you just saved a huge chunk by reusing last seasons’ trade show display, or you saved on other big ticket items and just have some extra cash to spend. It doesn’t matter how you got it, here are some smart ways to spend your remaining trade show budget dollars wisely.

#1 – Up your game with audience engagement.
Audience engagement apps add another level of interactivity to your trade show. And before you look away, we don’t mean adding just any app – there’s some great tools out there you should be utilizing. The app industry offers easy to use web-based live sharing and Q&A solutions to engage attendees before, during or after the show. They might also allow followers to watch live presentations, ask questions, answer polls, make digital notes, live tweet & much more. By capturing what’s really going on in your attendees’ minds, you can use the data to help you target the right audience for future trade shows. If you’re not sure it’s the best fit for your company just start small and adjust from there. Review your engagement the first time you use the app to make sure it will work for your needs.

#2  – Social walls = real time engagement.
Imagine how neat it would be collecting social media posts from your attendees in real time and displaying them right on a monitor mounted to your trade show display for everyone to see. Try selecting a specific hashtag pertaining to your show and have attendees post using that hashtag. Or simply ask attendees to “tag” you in a photo. You could make a game of it and use this as a contest to win your giveaway. Let’s be real here — who doesn’t love seeing their post show up on a big screen!

#3 – Create a trade show landing page.
Having a dedicated landing page added to your existing website to showcase your trade show schedule, locations, agendas and speakers — this would be helpful to attendees, right? The main purpose is to send potential attendees to your website to help you spark interest and encourage social media sharing.  Of course there are OK landing pages and there are amazing landing pages. Make sure your message is clear and to the point. Also graphics are huge so hiring a graphic designer might not be a bad idea since you’ll want to make sure all of your dedicated trade show landing pages are fully on brand.

#4 – Let’s…chatbot?!
For those unfamiliar with the term, a chatbot is a computer program or an artificial intelligence which conducts a conversation via audio or text. Adding a chat feature to your website to answer pre-tradeshow questions may take some of the burden off your support team.  And don’t worry, your pre-populated answers don’t have to sound robotic either. You can make it sound just as natural as having a live human on the other end. But you want to know the best part? Chatbots work for you 24/7 and are pretty darn cost effective.

#5 – Retargeting is your friend.
Quite possibly one of the best tools for converting your landing page visitors into attendees. We know you’ve seen it – you go to a website and a “pop-up” appears for you to sign up. This has been around for a while but just now becoming more popular in order to run specific campaigns to increase conversions. Now you might be wondering how this actually works…well, think of your trade show landing page as a “shopping cart”. Typically you’re asked to register when shopping at most online stores so you can save your information for next time. Well, there’s a slight problem with this. Most people won’t register on the first visit, but it’s crucial to your conversion numbers. Just make sure your registration page is clear on your intent and it will be a easier decision to sign up. Lastly, maybe spend a little money to set up a specific retargeting campaign engaging with people that visited but didn’t sign up. Sometimes a little nudge is all it takes.

#6 – Create Pre-Show Teaser Videos.
Video is considered the most effective way to promote anything these days, even your trade show to boost attendance. Utilizing video before and after your trade show could help not only generate awareness to your brand but also boost attendance to your trade show.  However, professional video production can become quite costly and the cheaper options may not look as professional as you would like. So how do you meet in the middle? Try merging existing footage with still photos to create a short video to display social media or your trade show landing page. Try testing out different online tools to combine elements into bite-size video snippets in no time at all.

#7 – Consider adding a Mobile Charging Station.
We’re sure you’ve witnessed this before – someone wandering around cell phone and charging cord in hand in a desperate search of an outlet. How would you like to be the one to swoop in and save the day! Trade show attendees rely on their cell phones, tablets and other devices to check emails, answer voicemail, post to social media or chat with coworkers. Adding a mobile charging station to your existing trade show booth will certainly be something attendees will not stop talking about! Genius, right?!

#8 – Boost your WiFi.
Rather than shelling out a crazy amount of money to the venue, and sacrificing your first born just to get decent bandwidth, consider adding a portable internet hotspot to your trade show booth. It’s so crazy how these small modules can make all our internet fears disappear and for a decent price. You’ll finally put an end to that “sorry I’m at a trade show and the Wifi is so slow I can’t even load Facebook” feeling.

So maybe you still have a little money leftover?

This could also be spent on promoting your brand or products on social media. A little bit of money spent on SEO targeted content across platforms like LinkedIn, Instagram  or Facebook could also work wonders.

 

Bundle Up your Trade Show Display

So, we live in Maine and we’re used to bundling up! Maine winters can be brutal! But thats not quite what we mean here. By combining different display components, such as a 10ft tension fabric display with a retractable banner stand and brochure rack, we’re actually designing a complete trade show display set-up just for you. The combination of different trade show elements make it easy for you to visualize your trade show display booth space to the point you can actually see yourself working in the booth. And although doing this creates the look of a custom trade show booth, rest assured these complete kits do not come with the custom price tag.

Even with their already low cost, we decided to show you a little extra love and offer a WEB ONLY promotion on all our Complete Trade Show Display packages including our 3 newest packages added just last week. Check them out:Embrace Trade Show Kit

We created our bundle packages with the exhibitor in mind! We’re hoping that by seeing these displays “in action” it will help when deciding which display elements you’d like to include in your exhibit booth. And with so many options available, we understand how hard it is sometimes to put the pieces of the trade show display puzzle together. The great part about these bundle packages is we’ve included some of our most popular products as well, so you are sure to represent your company in style at every trade show you attend. You might even win “best in show”!

So, what are you waiting for? Start shopping now to take advantage of this special offer happening this month only. And make sure you visit our site often, because every month there’s a chance to save with our monthly promotions and everyday savings. We look forward to working with you and creating your next amazing trade show display!

3 Major Benefits of Push-Fit Tension Fabric Displays

Push-Fit graphics, also known as Silicone Edge Graphics (SEG), are ideal for a variety of applications with pop up displays or displays featuring channel bar applications. This is the latest technology in tension fabric displays and features silicone edge beading attached to the edges of the printed fabric graphic, enabling you to easily push the graphic into a channel for a seamless edge display.

Of the many benefits that go along with oour push-fit tension fabric displays, the three listed below are the ones that most stand out to us.

Benefit #1: available options include single sided display or double sided, along with backlit LED illumination or non-illuminated dye-sublimated fabric graphics.

Benefit #2: extrusion-based frames or perimeter channel bars that hold SEG graphics and provide a seamless appearance for a message that can’t be missed.

Benefit #3: lightweight portability for easy travel to and from your trade show venue – ship via UPS or FedEx for delivery ahead of time or transport in a car for local shows.

For 2018 we’ve recently added two of the most popular push-fit graphic display lines on the market today. Here’s a brief overview of these products so you can further understand the simplicity of the SEG technology.

First up is the new Embrace™ tension fabric displays which combine the convenience of a pop up display with a streamlined look and innovation of a push-fit silicone edge fabric graphic.

The combination of a lightweight collapsible frame and a “push-fit” fabric graphic ensures a seamless and taut appearance to your graphic every time you display your message. No more wrinkles around the edges of your graphic due to stitching or velcro! Featuring a no tool setup, you’ll be amazed at the simplicity of this display every time.

Next up is the Vector Frame™ light boxes which are considered to be one of the easiest backlit trade show displays available on the market. Featuring a durable 4” (100mm) aluminum extrusion frame, one large seamless push-fit backlit fabric graphic and LED edge lighting. LED lights come adhered to the aluminum frame, making set-up as simple as assembling the frame, applying the push-fit graphics and plugging in the electrical cord! Vector Frame Light Boxes are ideal for use in retail, marketing events, conferences and trade show environments as the perfect solution for illuminating your message. Double sided graphics are also available to insure you grab attendees attention from all angles of the trade show floor.

 

Need assitance with your graphic design? Contact one of our talented graphic designers today to discuss how we can take your artwork to the next level. Call us at 1-800-723-2050 or email us at [email protected] now!

A Classic Style Trade Show Display That Just Keeps Drawing Interest

We'll explain the perks on this classic style trade show display.
This classic style of portable displays is able to pack a big larger than life impact to users encouraging them to take a closer look, drawing interest to what your brand has to offer.

A trade show display has the #1 job of capturing first and foremost as much attention to your little show booth space as possible, but it also has several other important functions. Your trade show booth can serve as a functional backdrop to attract attendees eyes and direct their movement where you want them. The pop up display offers all of this and more!  This classic style of portable exhibit displays is able to pack a big larger than life impact to users encouraging them to take a closer look, drawing interest to what your brand has to offer.  We’ll explain the many perks to this classic style trade show display and explain the #1 pop up display brand.

QUALITY HARDWARE – 100% USA MADE

The 1UP pop up is manufactured piece by piece by Affordable Exhibit Displays ONLY. Since we have been manufacturing for this particular style display since 1999 you canhigh-quality quality components with this pop up display. Take a look and compare – link to compare .pdf …  The better product we develop the better end results you, the end user – will receive. We aim for a trouble free life for your display that’s why we offer a Lifetime “No Questions Asked” Warranty on the 1UP frame components.  With a <1% repair rate you can be sure the 1UP trade show display will prove itself show after show.

PORTABILITY THAT JUST POPS UP

Compact & Convenient!  The 1UP pop up display brand gives you the classic curved look and feel all with virtually seamless larger than life graphics. The 1UP packs down into 2 wheeled shipping cases, is straight-forward to set up, ship, and transport even for the most rigorous of trade show schedules.

THE VERY BEST FRAME SINCE 1999.

The 1UP pop up display offers the most durable pop-up frame available. It’s the #1 pop up trade show display!   The virtually unbreakable accordion framing is self-locking with neodym (super amazing strength magnets) autoconnect magnetic locking bars. It instantly pops up and ‘clicks’ effortlessly into place with no additional connectors. The framing is constructed of 1/2″ square aluminum tubing – meaning strong and rugged for a lifetime of usage. Some other inferior models may use round tubing which is more susceptible to bending and breaking which only means repair headaches for you.

PHOTO QUALITY GRAPHICS

Make an impression on clients and prospects with the highest quality, longest lasting graphics.  A pop up display with graphic panels will provide that visual impact you are looking for.

For most of us a picture is comprehended faster than reading text.  That is what is great about the graphic panel – a picture speaks louder than words!  Make a clean and clear presentation with a high impact Graphic Panel on your 1Up pop up display. Set up and break down is simplified with the self-aligning graphic panels.  The mating magnetic will do all the work and just ‘snap’ together.  Don’t forget about a pop up display showing off your brand with a great graphic design.  Read why the graphic design of your trade show display is the #1 success factor.

TROUBLE FREE SHIPPING CASES

The quality continues right down to even our shipping cases. These roto-molded cases are patented. These cases offer heavy duty built-in rubber wheels as well as a lid that is fastened with cotter pins for easy accessing. No worries about broken wheels or lost lids with these cases. Extras like these only begin to tell you how quality of our 1Up pop up is unequaled.

A bigger bonus: a finished wood counter top and full color graphic wrap creates and transforms your dual shipping cases into a branded podium workstation!  

HIGHLIGHTING HEADERS

With optional highlighting accessories such as our backlit header.  This custom logo header spans the curve of the 1UP and is typically backlit with illuminating connecting light bars to make your logo, brand and specific message stand out.  The bonus to the backlit header is the lighting not only illuminates your name but also the width of the panels underneath providing a warm glow throughout your booth space.

DIGITAL PRESENTATIONS AT ITS BEST

Utilizing technology in a pop up display is a trending theme.  The Media kits offered by the 1UP is multi-use for a wide variety of monitors with the Vesa compatible mount being able to support a 17”-32” size monitor weighing no more than 40 lbs.  The most popular trending technology to integrate into the 1UP is the use of an iPad.  The 1UP iPad mount allows for exhibitors to easily connect to apps or the internet with attendees standing right there.  Add even more function to the 1UP dual case podium kit by adding in an iPad insert into the finished wood counter top.

TRADE SHOW ACCESSORIES

There are a variety of accessories like media kits such as the monitor or iPad mounts, podium kits as mentioned above, plus other style pop-up counters and LED stem lighting to further illuminate the display of your brand message.

CONVEX GRAPHIC PANELS

The 1UP is designed to accommodate graphics on both the concave front and convex back for island applications.  The 16ft or 20ft Serpentine style 1UP combines the use of both concave and convex sides of the framing giving the trade show booth space a feeling of movement in the shape of an ‘S’.

MANY CONFIGURATION OPTIONS

The 1UP brand offers a size and shape for every budget and use.  From a 4ft wide mini table top display, to towers and built to fit a 20ft trade show booth space.  Plus, all of the in between sizes too such as 6ft wide, 8ft wide which is the most popular and 10ft wide floor units.  The table top display pop up style is offered in 5ft wide, 6ft wide which is the most popular and 8ft wide table units.

As Affordable Displays offers in-house printing, our company will expertly handle all the custom printing for the 1UP pop up display brand and we offer the steadfast assurance that the graphics printed will be thoroughly inspected for quality during the printing process. To gain more insight into the benefits and features of the very latest and innovative pop up displays, take a moment to go through the AffordableDisplays.com website.

Our company is a family owned and operated company and as such, we have deep-seated family values and we focus on quality and on offering our clients a top choice of eye-catching and appealing tradeshow exhibits and displays.  If you’re willing to attend a trade show, make it worth your while.  Go the High Impact route and choose one of our Graphic Panel pop up packages!

Affordable Displays does not just sell tradeshow pop-up displays but also table top displays, banner stands and outdoor tents and feather flags.  

#1 Trade Show Success Factor

Trade show success depends upon applying 1 most important piece of criteria.
Read about what the absolute number 1 factor to trade show success is.

Your trade show success is dependant on just one factor — your graphics.  And, if executed with proper planning, high resolution imagery, and maybe the help from a professional graphic designer your booth will be the busiest space at the show.  The placement, coloring, and logo layout execution is critical to ensure the first impression generates the buzz from attendees throughout your days at a trade show.  Keep in mind: studies conducted by the Center for Exhibition Industry Research have found that visitors peruse a display about 3 to 5 seconds before making the decision to walk on or stop to talk.  A trade show is the most ideal opportunity for businesses to personally interact with their exact targeted market making the graphics of your trade show display the #1 success factor in hitting it big.

3 Reasons Why A Branded Booth Space Is So Important  

Reason #1
Who cares?  

Do you think attendees really care about what your trade show booth graphics look like?  One might say absolutely because at the end of the day your branded graphics will make the difference whether attendees will WANT to take the time to stop and listen to what your booth staff has to say.

Reason #2
No one wants the question mark face.

It’s a very common facial expression given when attendees glance over at your booth space, then glance at you, then glance back towards your booth space ultimately just not being able to connect the dots and ‘Get It’ aka get your point and purpose of your brand. You don’t want this face to happen!

Reason #3
How’s about a big plate of embarrassment!  

That’s what you’ll be handed time and time again during the show.  If attendees aren’t caring enough to stop or when they wind up with a big question mark face the outcome will be the booth staff standing around just plain old embarrassed at how the branded booth space behind them is being presented.  You don’t want this either!

3 Simple How To’s to Tackle Your Booth Space Graphics

How To #1
Keep It Simple.  

The key to creating the most effective and attractive display layout is to just keep it simple.  Create your graphics around one central idea, USP, core service tagline or concept.  This way you can keep the text to a minimum making the entire concept easier to comprehend within the 3-5 seconds.

How To #2
Logo and Layout.

First and foremost your business’s logo and branding should be placed front and center.  The addition of your tagline or slogan should be placed near the logo to physically connect the two together.  Plus, ALWAYS put your web address.  It’s much easier to remember than any phone number or physical address.

Readability factor #1  Attendees read from left to right.
Readability factor #2 The average eye can read 1” of text height for every 10ft they are standing away.

How To #3
High Color Graphics.

3D Eye-catching, life size, full of color graphics is the difference between a strongly communicated brand and a weak one.  Branding and coloring is what will ignite the eyes and brain connection to force attendees to stop and take notice of your trade show display space.  Our biggest tip is to ensure you’ve chosen graphics that are high resolution to truly gain the impact you are striving for.  High resolution imagery will carry your brand and take it beyond actual words.

3 Seconds of Trade Show Face Time

There is only 3 seconds to attract the attention of trade show attendees.
Spark and inspire trade show attendees to stop and visit your booth.

YOUR MAIN GOAL: APPEAL TO YOUR CUSTOMERS’ NEEDS AND WANTS in a message that is short and to the point.  At a trade show you have 3 SECONDS… that’s it. That is all the time you have to spark the passers-by and inspire them to ask questions that convert into sales.

Here are some simple tips and tricks that may ignite the creative side in you allowing your company to display its best image.

1. BIG letters?
A rule of thumb is the average eyesight can read approx. 1″ of text for every 10′ they are standing away.

2. Should you use photos or illustrations? Photos are always preferred over illustrations. Photos are more credible, easily understood and have a bigger impact with the consumer. Take your own photos or for generic photos use high quality stock photography.

3. How many words should be used?
Keep it under 10 words or less and no more than 5 lines. Lead with your strongest benefit first then the next relevant benefits to follow.  For example, if you have 30-year warranty and no one else does, shout it out.

Two simple tips to follow:
• A single sentence, phrase, or word
• Use concrete facts that are a benefit – what makes you different

Most importantly, keep to your branding guidelines and keep all text within the top half of the display design.

Final note: by clearly communicating your company information in as few words as possible will benefit you in the end. Showing large, high quality photo(s) & colors will promote your products and make it easier for people to remember you.

Take a look at our online trade show display portfolio to see what others have done by Affordable Exhibit Displays or ask our graphic design team for help in designing your new trade show display.

How To Let Constructive Criticism Be Your Guide

Being open to design help will benefit any trade show display
Letting a fresh pair of eyes can help take your message to the next level.

Many times you have looked at your own exhibit so many times that it’s at a point where you don’t ‘see’ it anymore.  Accepting constructive criticism is best to listen to when you can’t see your brands clear message anymore. The solution is a fresh set of eyes.  A fresh set of eyes may make all the difference in the world.

To know where to begin on evaluating how your current booth is working you’ll need to ask and outer source – someone who is not related to your business or industry is best. Have someone who is in no way related to the trade show industry or your company look at your exhibit and/or current marketing materials.

Give your ‘fresh set of eyes’ a good look at your exhibit booth and materials. Ask yourself these questions:

What do they notice first?

What impression do they get of your company?

What emotions do your graphics evoke?

Record their impressions and compare how they measure up to your marketing objectives. This fresh set of eyes will be viewing your booth the same way the attendees do – with no prior knowledge or preconceived notions of how the exhibit is ‘supposed’ to look.

:: Case Study ::

A prime example is one of our returning customers, Custom Service Solutions.  They came to our graphic design team and wanted a small self-standing sign to distribute to the machine vendors that would be attending the same trade show as them.

They submitted their own artwork and asked our opinion about the layout. We asked, “What’s the main goal?”: to inform customers about a drawing for a free Firetrace System. Our comment back: there is no clear, single message, there is just too much going on. So, with a bit of discussion Custom Service Solutions decided to allow us to come up with a single targeted message.

Here’s our point: by opening up the door for constructive criticism Custom Service Solutions ended up with a clear, concise design that will draw customers in to ask “How can I qualify?” Thus, in turn opening the door to obtain a lead, close a sale, or boost their ROI for the show.

Trade show branding vs. routine. Which side are you on?

 

Branding vs routine at a trade show
Which side are you on: tradshow branding or just keep your brand routine.

Let’s clear this up right away.  The repetition of doing the same thing every trade show event, every year is NOT branding.  It’s simply boredom.

Routine is comfortable, it’s safe and it’s a rut you don’t want to be in especially at a Trade Show.  Trade shows should be everything else but routine.

Say you go to X show each year, you bring the same display using the same graphics, you hand out the same literature even use the same giveaways, you may even wear the same clothes. By now I’m sure you’re pretty bored. And so are your customers.

Effective branding is not just a logo or certain color scheme; it’s not a product either.  A brand is a promise of a clear-cut benefit and value that is fitting to your users.

It’s tough to decide whether you should step out of the branding box at a trade show.  Here are some arguments as to which side you are on.

To effectively promote your brand does not mean you need to keep with the same everything.  It can mean change too.  Take a large corporation for instance, for example, ExxonMobil.  They’ve been in business for over 125 years.  Check out ExxonMobil’s history here.  They’ve changed their logo over the years as often as needed to keep up with the current market.  And it hasn’t slowed the company’s progression.

So, really it’s okay to take your trade show routine in a different direction.  In fact, you really should Break the Routine all together today. Here are two quick pointers on what you can do to increase attention to your graphics.

According to a study by the Pennsylvania College of Optometry, there are two simple elements that can enhance graphic effectiveness.

1. Adding a border to focus attention on your sign helps the viewer read it 26% faster. That’s a big advantage in a fast-paced marketplace.

2. By presenting special information in a second color, you increase the reader’s retention by 78%. So whatever is most important on your sign, whether it’s a phone number or a keyword, try using an accent color to draw a better response.
Sometimes change does not need to be a full complete logo overhaul like ExxonMobil.  Maybe a small graphic update with a new focus is all you need to make the next trade show better than ever before.