Create inviting environments that engage trade show attendees
By Daniel Chaddock, President of E&E Exhibit Solutions
As a trade show marketer, you know you can’t just plop down any old booth in a space and attract attendees. Designing your trade show display is as strategic as picking the right show or crafting your marketing message for the right audience. The ubiquitous counters with “please take one” literature and self-running videos just don’t do the trick anymore. And, booth staff who are too eager to give software demos can make attendees run away down the aisle.
To create buzz around your booth, look for ways to take your booth from a corporate store front to a more casual, yet interactive setting. An emerging trend in trade show exhibit design is creating environments in which to engage booth visitors. You want to put attendees at ease, so they let down their barriers before you start to talk business.
Keep the following trends in mind when working with your exhibit house on a new booth design and watch attendees flock to your booth like bees to honey.
Attract attendees by appealing to their senses.
Use textures and substances, such as virtual fire, water or steam features that entice visitors to come in, get a closer look, and even touch their surroundings. A positive sensory reaction to your booth can make attendees more receptive to a conversation and make your marketing messages more memorable.
Make your booth interactive.
While Guitar Hero can make attendees get up and move, a perfect score on “Hit Me With Your Best Shot” doesn’t provide any insight into your target market or contribute anything to your industry’s body of knowledge. Think of ways to incorporate social media into your display and start a show-long discussion about relevant topics in your industry.
Allow attendees to leave relevant comments on a chalkboard or whiteboard in your booth.
Or, provide access to computer display kiosks where visitors can make posts on blogs and fan pages. This tactic can motivate people to come back to your booth repeatedly for updates, forming a positive relationship with your company.
Keep attendees focused on your booth.
Design a booth with ceiling structures. Today’s popular aluminum extrusion exhibits, such as the LUMITURE exhibit displays, can accommodate overhead elements with ease. Use lightweight fabric printed with trade show graphics or illuminated with colored light to bring visual interest above. By enclosing your environment, you better manage your booth space and keep visitors’ eyes on your messaging and not your neighbors’ booths.
Use casual meeting areas
Skip the conference board room and opt for more relaxed seating areas, such as oversized comfy couches with a coffee table. With a less formal meeting space, you can remove physical obstacles like counters and lead retrieval machines and start a friendly discussion, in which your potential customer will open up about her business needs.
Done correctly, these environments act similar to and serve the same reaction as crowds to a contagious street performance, where people gather to see what’s happening. Clever, unique and well thought out environments at a trade show communicate specific marketing messages to a specific audience.
Contact E&E Exhibit Solutions today for more advice on designing a comfortable environment for your trade show displays.
Since 1994, Daniel Chaddock has consulted on the effective design and use of custom displays for trade show marketing. He is currently President of E&E Exhibit Solutions, a custom exhibit rentals (in authorized states) and custom exhibit rental designs company offering expertise in portable exhibits and modular trade show displays. To discuss custom exhibit rental options reach Daniel via email Daniel@exhibitsusa.com or contact us at E&E Custom Exhibit Rentals at 800.709.6935.