Whether you’re launching a new product or reaching out to a new audience, trade show booths are an invaluable tool that provide a great platform for success at trade shows and conferences. Having the right plan for your booth can determine whether or not your trade participation is a success. Trade show newcomers and veterans alike deal with similar questions when preparing for a booth for an upcoming event.
When planning to attend your first (or next) trade show, there are many details that should be considered. Making your booth stand out, deciding how to present your product, and managing costs are just a few of the important factors.
Listed below are 8 common questions and answers regarding trade show booths.
Step 1, of course, is having a trade show booth. Building your own trade show booth is certainly an option. However, for most it’s an option they’d rather forgo. Designing the specs, gathering the materials, and physically putting together a booth is labor and time intensive. For this reason, many businesses choose to purchase their booths.
There are several options at your disposal, including purchasing an ‘off the shelf’ unit that can subsequently be customized with your company’s brand. However, working with companies that specialize in building trade show booths is the best way to ensure that your pitch makes the desired impact. Aside from knowing that all units will be built to meet the regulatory requirements, this option ensures that you obtain a product that is designed to reflect your brand and needs. Embracing the latest design trends and choosing the most practical materials (regarding weight, installation, and costs) can have a significant impact on the trade show booth – and, therefore, the success of the event as a whole.
While most major trade shows will attract thousands of visitors, it can also attract hundreds of businesses. A successful trade show booth will give your company the best chance of beating the competition to gain the attention (and converted sales) that you desire. As is the case with a traditional store, first impressions count for everything, perhaps even more so due to the sheer volume of competing companies around you. The need to master the trade show booth design is huge.
The best trade show booths will achieve several things. They will grab the attention of attendees while they walk by while also providing insight into the brand and product while simultaneously encouraging consumers to find out more. Trade show booths should additionally provide a suitable space for discussing the unique selling points of the product to individuals and small groups alike. To provide a winning space which can inform and entertain guests with a high focus on conversions, the trade show should incorporate several features, including but not limited to;
While the trade show booth should form the central focus of your trade event plans, it’s important to appreciate that it is still only one ingredient in the recipe for success. For optimal results, you must also ensure that your sales team are dressed to impress and have briefed on the necessary details to efficiently answer any questions put their way. Other crucial aspects include the layout of any marketing materials, the quality of any visual media, and the reliability of any stock management and payment processing facilities.
As already discussed, the best trade show booths achieve several outcomes. Nevertheless, none of the other rewarding features count for anything if you cannot encourage trade show attendees to visit your pitch to learn more about the products. Given there will be dozens of other businesses hoping to win over the same consumers and clients, standing out from the crowd is crucial. The overhead signage is one of the most significant elements as it’ll grab the attention of guests even when they are at the other end of the trade show venue. You don’t necessarily need to have lights, although it is an option, but your brand name should be visible from every angle.
Studies show that you have just 8 seconds to grab a consumer’s attention in any environment, and the fast-paced world of trade exhibitions puts you under even greater pressure.
As for the booth itself, utilizing video and audio media will have a telling impact as the info is easier for guests to digest and also stops you from repeating yourself throughout the day. A raised floor instantly grabs the attention while adding some seating can be a great design feature as many guests will be spending hours on their feet. Setting aside a competition stand or promotional giveaway at the front of your booth can be very useful too. When supported by a thought out design that implements modern features, those tricks that add a little value unlock the door to greater foot traffic and (hopefully) more conversions.
What might surprise some people is that some of the work in making your booth stand out has nothing to do with your actual booth at all. Marketing your presence at the event prior to the event taking place can create the desire for people to visit you. Savvy businesses are turning to social media and other forms of digital marketing to attract attendees. Even more traditional forms of advertising like radio, billboard, and newspaper can achieve this outcome. Letting your target audience know that they can see your exciting product or service at the show can create a positive and have you standing out before the event even starts.
A well-designed trade show booth that wins the war for foot traffic will provide a solid foundation for trade show success. However, a number of additional features are required to unlock the full potential of the exhibition. As well as the monitors and other electronic equipment, the smaller accessories can go a long way towards generating conversions and orders.
The following items are all essential features to be included in your trade show exhibition;
Specialized industries will likely require additional equipment based on the industry. If you’re unsure of what supplies to bring to a specialized industry show, consult with your point of contact for the event. Without the right equipment and accessories to make a winning impression, the entire trade show event is set to suffer.
Trade show attire is a commonly overlooked detail for first-time attendees, but it is one of the most essential features to complement your winning booth design. The harsh reality of the situation is that many guests will form judgements of the salespeople based on outward appearance, meaning that a poor choice of outfit can potentially ruin the hopes of a sale.
You need to create a professional atmosphere but must also remember that trade show days are very long and will require you to do a lot of talking and demonstrating, as well as potential restocking of products and marketing materials. Business formal attire can, therefore, often feel impractical and unsuitable. Business casual attire is often the best choice. For men, this can mean wearing a shirt, polo shirt, or dress shirt with dress pants, khakis, or chinos and either dress shoes or loafers. For women, a collared shirt or sweater with dress pants or a skirt is most likely. Dress flats are the most practical footwear choice.
Whichever attire you choose, creating a level of consistency is essential. This could mean matching or complementing the colour schemes used in the trade show booth. It’s always a good idea to wear clothing with embroidered logos. Additionally, there should be a level of coordination across the team as to create a professional vibe that inspires confidence from the consumer and shows that you have paid attention to detail. There are some situations in which you may be better suited to a business formal look, or even a casual one (perhaps if selling sports attire, for example) to promote a winning atmosphere. Name badges aren’t needed, but business cards will prove to be a useful tool.
No two vendors are the same. Consequently, then, your business needs to find the right strategy to highlight the qualities of your brand and product(s). In truth, there is no one right or wrong answer, as the personality of the company and the type of products being sold will have a telling impact. Visual products need to be shown in a way that highlights their visually appealing features while gadgets may require some space around them to truly showcase their capabilities. The space and the lighting elements will have a big impact on your possibilities for selling in-person. However, the use of video media and other resources can overcome logistical issues to highlight the benefits of the products as well as the value they can bring to the user’s life.
A valuable exercise is to put yourself in the shoes of someone that’s attending the show. Imagine that you’re walking around the venue with no preference to any particular product or booth. What would you want to see and hear from your product that would get you interested to buy? Anticipate the reaction and questions that attendees may have and prepare responses.
Marketing materials such as leaflets and information brochures can work wonders. When taking orders on products, you may wish to consider a look book of samples to showcase the available variations of a product. This can be particularly useful when dealing with furniture, for example. Products that aren’t visual still need the same level of attention, but you must master what you are going to say. Ultimately, you want to drum up excitement and interest. Whether it’s showing off the visual elements or highlighting the practical and functional features of a product for the home or business.
The trade show event starts long before the doors open, and you should ensure that all the necessary checks have taken place long in advance, which should cover everything from marketing to logistics. When the big day arrives, you also need to ensure that you get there early to allow ample time to set up the facilities. This should be followed by testing all products, including the payment facilities and any media – checking for sound and video quality.
In addition to quality checking all of resources, you’ll want to be sure your team is prepared and on the same page throughout the show. Listed below are some of the details that should be confirmed in advance:
Lastly, you should arrange your booth in a way that attendees have something to do or look at if you’re busy speaking with another attendee. You don’t want to miss out on potential interactions simply because there was nothing to do or see. It’s not a bad idea to simulate the booth experience according to your plan before the show. During this runthrough, you should be able to identify any potential weak spots that need to be improved.
Trade shows are a great place to generate more interest in the business and secure additional revenue, but they aren’t cheap. As such, you should always calculate the anticipated costs before taking any active steps towards preparation. The prices can fluctuate massively, but trade show booths themselves are expected to cost between $100 and $150 for every square foot. The size, materials, and incorporated features will naturally have a huge influence on the overall costs, but you can expect to spend a five-figure fee solely on the booth. Of course, rentals can lower the costs but will limit your design opportunities while also preventing you from visiting multiple trade shows throughout the year.
According to EXHIBITOR magazine, trade show booth construction accounts for around 18% of the total costs. Other aspects to consider include the trade show space (33%), travel and expenses (18%), show services (12%), shipping (9%), pre-event internal promotion (8%), and miscellaneous (2%). However, USA Trade Show Shipping can take the sting out of the shipping costs with highly professional and cost-effective logistics.
After investing thousands in the space and the trade show booths themselves, having success at your trade shows is a must. Getting your trade show booth to your events is an extremely vital task that we can take care of for you. R+L Global Logistics is an expert in trade show logistics and transportation with over 50 years of combined knowledge and experience.
We’ve transported trade show booths for thousands of customers, so we understand what’s needed and what it takes to get the job done. Our value-added services including owned and operated warehouses, customs brokerage, and more, save you money and allow us to serve as a one-stop-shop for you.
If you have any questions about our trade show shipping services or would like to receive a quote, give us a call at (866)415-8986. We’re ready to make your trade show booth shipment easy and hassle-free.