You’ve registered for your first trade show. Youve invited people through various online ticketing software, You’ve gathered your collateral. You’ve dusted off your suit. You’re armed with a stack of business cards, fistfuls of pens, and a tablecloth with a vinyl company sign. Bring on the customers! Right? …Not so fast.
Trade show exhibits have come a long way since your college career fair. But the great news is, having a successful trade show booth doesn’t have to cost a lot, and you don’t have to install pyrotechnics to get your target customers’ attention. Here are 5 trade show exhibit tips that will help drive business to your booth without breaking the bank.
1. Give your customers an experience to remember.
Long gone are the days of the hard sell reminiscent of shopping mall kiosk vendors. Today’s trade shows thrive on experiential marketing – giving visitors something to watch or learn and enjoy, so that they carry that positive experience with them and are thereby more receptive to a soft-sell approach.
2. Pay attention to structural elements.
Your trade show display is your chance to bring the customer into your world – to convey your brand and make them feel like they’re really immersed while visiting your booth. Having a customized and sturdy architecture for your display can really help you stand out above the competition, and it can be surprisingly affordable.
3. Set the mood right with lighting.
Lighting is one of the easiest and most dramatic ways to create an atmosphere you want and call attention to specific elements of your trade show booth. Flatter your business’ appearance with lighting that echoes your brand—whether you’re bold and colorful or more refined and subdued.
4. Reflect your brand in your giveaways.
Find creative ways to sneak your brand into your booth. For example, if you’re a software company, maybe you’d forego the pens and highlighters for thumb drives pre-loaded with a special trial of your latest version, with unique features saved just for your trade show visitors.
5. Graphics, graphics, graphics!
Perhaps most important to any trade show exhibit is the graphical elements that portray who you are to your customers. You can have the most cutting edge lighting and hardware, but if it’s not supporting great branded imagery, your customers won’t know who you are. Investing in high quality graphics, whether in the form of eye-catching printed collateral or a sweeping backdrop display, will leave a big impression on visitors and help them to remember and trust your brand.
These are just 5 of many great trade show exhibit tips out there. If you had one important piece of advice for trade show exhibitors, what would it be?
Author Bio: Joe Lyons is the Creative Director at Spin350 Creative Inc, a Boston based design cluster that specializes in Boston trade show displays.