Small business owners, including those in the start-up phase, can find the task of preparing for a trade show to be a confusing and scary experience. What should you include in your trade show displays and how do you design and deliver your message in your trade show display booth?
The first thing you need to do is get the specifics of the trade show you are considering attending or have already registered to be part of in the future. You can always contact the event organizers and get details on the audience that the show attracts and the layout of the area you will use to display information about your business.
Some of the information you need to know includes the size of your trade show display table, whether there is wall space for trade show banners or your company sign, if there are electrical outlets near you and other items that you might need to provide (such as a tablecloth).
Once you know the specifics of your booth, you can start to design the look and feel of your trade show display. Take a look below to learn some mistakes to avoid as well as get some tips for putting together a great looking display!
Three Trade Show Display Mistakes To Avoid
The process of putting together a great trade show display booth does not happen overnight. You need to remember that the best trade show displays are made by people who have set up booths in the past. There is a lot to learn and you will likely make some mistakes along the way.
Here are the top three mistakes to avoid when designing trade show displays for the first time:
- Not Setting the Appropriate Budget
According to Exhibitor Online, around 33% of a trade show budget is spent on the booth space. This number does not include items and expenses such as the exhibit stand, the cost of staffing the booth, show services, and logistics. To give you a better idea, keep in mind that staff costs include salary, staff training, and accommodations during the event. Show services expenses need to include utilities and WiFi as part of the booth rental cost. The total cost of show logistics depends on the type of stand you choose in order to create a successful trade show booth.
- Adding Too Much Info into Your Graphics
While you might be excited to share a good deal of information about your business, graphic clutter is a common mistake that can actually prevent people from getting your desired message.
Information clutter happens because those with a lack of design experience want to add as much information into a graphic as possible. While they think the more information they add, the more information they get across to the public, the reality of the situation is actually the opposite. The more information you add, the more crowded it looks which means your prospects will likely walk past your booth without knowing what your company does.
Messaging clutter means your message is lost because of too many details. The more details you add, the more someone will be confused about the services your company provides. You should determine the one (or two) key messages you want to focus on and leave the additional details for when you are chatting with someone.
Photo clutter occurs when you add as many photos as possible into a trade show display because you think it looks exciting and enticing. In general, one very good image does a better job than multiple images. You need to brainstorm a clear and concise message prospects can understand within three seconds and combine the message with a photo that grabs attention away from other exhibitor booths.
- Not Setting the Right Goals
You have to set goals so you will know if the trade show was a success. It is just like the old saying, “If you can’t measure it, You can’t improve it.” The goals can be as simple as “Get fifty leads” or “Win five new clients” or even more people-oriented goals such as “Strengthen relationships by talking to ten existing clients” or “Make a connection with one hundred new prospects.”
Make Your Trade Show Displays Stand Out Using These Tips
- Make displays easy to read – The inclusion of too many design elements or too much copy on trade show banners can have a negative impact on your branding efforts. Instead, select an easy-to-read font in a size that is readable from a distance.
- Use vibrant colors to get attention – The use of bright colors can create a feeling of excitement about your brand and display which makes you stand out from the competition.
- Include a presentation board in the display – A stand-alone presentation board is an effective way to show clients how they can benefit by using your services. It is also a way to start a conversation so be sure and include branding items such as pictures and your company name and logo.
- Spotlight your company name – Use design software to create a template of your company name. You can place your template on cardboard or foam core to make a sign with your name on the wall beyond your trade show display.
- Have giveaways for everyone – Trade show giveaways, such as business cards, pens, brochures and magnets that include your company name and logo on it are ideal items to give to attendees as souvenirs that make sure they remember your company.
- Drawings for prizes – Have a drawing for a prize that complements your business and appeals to the public. Have entrants grab a ticket or drop their business cards into a fish bowl. Once you are done awarding prizes, you can then use this information in the future to follow up with your new contacts.
Call Innvoke before your next trade show and we will make sure you have what you need!
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