Category : Before the Show

6 Simple Steps to Maintain Your Trade Show Booth

Any regular trade show exhibitor knows that a good trade show booth doesn’t come cheap. In fact, some of them can be pretty darn expensive. Fortunately, if you treat your booth right and take time to maintain it, it should last you for years and years to come.

Want to get the most out of your trade show booth investment? Follow these six easy steps for booth maintenance:

1. Always use a carrying case. Travel is extremely dangerous for a trade show booth. It easily can get dropped, slammed into a wall or caught in the rain, rendering it completely useless. Safeguard you booth by using a carrying case at all time during travel.
2. Thoroughly clean it after every show. When you’re done exhibiting, wipe down all elements of your booth with a damp cloth, and completely dry it before taking it down and packing it away. This can help prevent dirt, dust and grime from building up on your displays.
3. Take your booth down with care. Even if you’re in a hurry, take your time when tearing down your booth. Fold up each and every piece as it’s meant to be folded, detach add-ons and smaller parts, and roll up banners and signage properly. You don’t want to end up with unsightly creases or breaks the next time you pull your booth out. Plus, you can inspect each piece as you deconstruct and see if any part of your booth will need maintenance or repair before your next show.
4. Be careful where you store it. Always store your booth in a climate-controlled environment. Heat can warp your displays, make colors fade and have other damaging effects on your booth. You’ll also want to be sure no rodents or bugs can get to your displays in storage either, as they could chew on our burrow holes in your booth.
5. Look into shipping options. If you’re traveling a long distance to and from a show, consider shipping your trade show booth professionally. This can help prevent any damage from occurring while in transit. If you attend trade shows frequently, you can plan ahead and try storing your display at a facility located midway between two trade show cities so you can minimize your shipping costs.
6. Get professional help. When in doubt, always contact a professional trade show booth manufacturer to help store and maintain your pieces. Often, they can even provide repair services if pieces of your booth need fixing.

By using these six tips and properly caring for and maintaining your trade show booth, you can ensure it lasts your company for many years (and many shows) to come.

Guest blog post: Ballance Display manufactures custom portable trade show exhibits and marketing displays, display graphics, and other light weight accessories.”

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Trade Show Giveaways: Are You Wasting Your Money?

trade show giveawaysHave you ever found yourself struggling to find the right trade show giveaways? Shopping for trade show giveaways can be an overwhelming task. The catalogs jammed packed with tschokes, from pens, pencils, and mouse pads, to coffee mugs, baseball caps and more, can make your head spin! When your boss and sales reps chime in with their bright ideas for novel giveaways, you’re in mega information overload. With all this information, how do you choose the right giveaway that leaves a lasting impression with a powerful marketing message?

It’s time to consider what happens when the trade show is over.  Imagine an attendee who’s a buyer for a large chain of clothing stores, and she’s just spent three days at a show. Dazzled by the whole experience, and tired from the journey, she is sitting in her office examining her tote bags full of goodies. Right now, her first thoughts might go something like this:

“Wow, they love handing out pens and pencils. Maybe my new hires can use those mouse pads. How about the tote bags? They might come in handy for groceries, or for my assistant. And the hi-tech novelties can go straight to my teenage son, Darrell.”

Suddenly, she spots a small booklet entitled “27 Ways to Be A More Discerning Buyer,” which appears packed full of interesting information. She quickly slips it into her handbag to look at on the train ride home. Out of all the giveaways she walked away with, this booklet proved to be the only thing of value to her.

Informational products, like booklets, special reports, checklists, tip sheets, audio or video recordings make much more powerful and valuable trade show giveaways.

Let’s take a quick look at five ways they help you stand head and shoulders above your competition:

1. Builds credibility.

They build credibility because information wins the day. It’s that simple. When you provide your audience with information they can use, they view you as knowledgeable.

2. Viewed as a thought leader.

When you’re viewed as knowledgeable, customers and prospects often translate this into expertise, mastery or thought leadership in your industry.

3. Sends a positive message.

As a thought leader, informational products send the message that you are interested in pursuing a real relationship with your customers. You understand their problems and challenges. You can offer them solutions.

Compare that to a coffee mug. The customer is more likely to think about having their morning caffeine fix before they ever think about you!

4. More bang for your buck.

You get more for your money when you choose informational products. You can create your own content, and then have the license to do what you want with them.

5. Use existing informational products.

On the other hand, there are many informational products available where you can easily get permission to simply personalize it with your logo, website, and contact information.

Pens run out of ink, coffee cups can be dropped and broken, but informational products are remembered, valued, and most importantly, can trigger buying activity.

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Guest Blog: 7 Keys to Designing the Perfect Exhibit Display

Creating a lasting impression on people through your exhibit display is becoming increasingly vital in the ever competitive world of trade shows and exhibitions. First impressions do count massively when attracting people to your exhibit display, even if your company has superior products/services. Initial negative impressions from a poor exhibit display might detract potential customers – but not to worry! These seven key ingredients can help you design an eye catching exhibit display that will inundate you with visitors:

1)    Marketing aims and/or exhibiting goals
First of all, it is worth considering what kind of message you wish to communicate through your display, as well as your reasons for exhibiting at the show. Make sure you hang on to these reasons throughout the whole process! Even the most perfect exhibit display might fall at the last hurdle if it doesn’t efficiently convey your aims, image or brand values. Consider what kind of image you want your design to convey – is your company cutting-edge, functional, silly?

2)    Target audience
Make sure to keep your target audience in mind when designing your exhibit display. You need to steer your concept towards what your customer base wants – there’s no use creating a display that attracts the wrong prospects.

3)    Maximizing space
Exhibit displays ought to take full advantage of your allocated space, so ensure that you find out the dimensions from the organizers before entering the design process. Show shows will allow you to build exhibit displays up to 20 feet in height, so make sure to capitalize on such allocations so as to outdo your competitors. Flaunt your logo across the hall by creating signage with a high arch, or by having your brand featured on a central tower or on a top truss. To assist with the flow of your exhibit display, make sure there are no obstructions blocking your visitors from seeing your brand, and try to keep meeting areas to the back.

4)    Text
When it comes to text on an exhibit display, less is most certainly more. Stay as brief and succinct as possible, remembering that you don’t need to use full paragraphs or sentences when a few words will do. Use fonts large and legible enough to be seen from a distance, making sure that they are in line with your brand image. Place any text high up so as to avoid it being blocked by people visiting your booth.

5)    Graphics
The phrase ‘a picture is worth a thousand words’ couldn’t be more appropriate when it comes to exhibit displays. The correct use of images can help to convey complex ideas quickly and effectively without the need for text. Large scale images can be particularly successful – bear in mind that your target audience will use your company logo and images to confirm your business’ identity. As with text, remember to consider image placement in order to ensure that they can be seen from a distance without being obscured.

6)    Lighting
Adding lighting to your display is a key requirement for increasing traffic and ensuring that your message is clear. On a standard level, lighting allows potential customers to clearly read your display and its message. On a deeper level, however, it can convey a mood or atmosphere, and even highlight a particular area of an exhibit display, such as a new service or product.
You could for example use angled light boxes at the entrance to your display, or even adapt colored lighting to create a particular mood you’re after.

7)    Materials
Using the right material will help reinforce your brand, creating a dazzling design that can attract your target audience to your display. For innovative and forward thinking companies, try using brushed aluminum panels or silver and chrome details to create a contemporary look. For more traditional and corporate businesses, you should opt for richer wood tones. It’s also worth considering the use of fabric, i.e. fabric dividers which are perfect for separating specific areas apart.

Incorporate these tips into your design and you should be set to create an effective, attractive, and perfect exhibit display!

Guest article by Amy Henderson, writer on marketing businesses through trade shows, display stands and exhibition stands for Marler Haley.
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