Hosting an exhibition stand at conferences or trade shows can be a cost-intensive part of any marketing plan.
To get a good return on that investment, you need more than products or services. You need a stand or booth that will attract people and keep them there long enough to understand your value proposition.
Thankfully, there are hundreds of ways to create noteworthy exhibition stands. Here, we outline six that are within the reach of companies of all sizes.
1. Go Digital
It’s surprising how many exhibition stands still don’t include digital elements. Some marketing managers might say that people like a break from technology so staying analog is a plus.
But in this digital age, exhibits that only use paper and reps to engage potential customers will feel out of step.
To show that your company is contemporary and engaging, use screens to run loops of short videos or polished slideshows.
You can also use a screen to display real-time Twitter feeds. This can draw attention and generate conversation, especially if the event hashtag is popular. It’s also helpful to have one of your team dedicated to tweeting about your products and the event to keep the feed active at all times.
Consider using free-standing digital signage with a touchscreen to gather feedback or offer quizzes.
2. Create a World
With so many kinds of exhibition stands available, it’s never been easier to transform the ordinary into unique worlds.
Let’s say you sell aquarium gear. Do you think your competitors will have an exhibition stand that doubles as an underwater world? Probably not.
Creating a world within your exhibition stand gives your visitors an experience. And, experiences are often more memorable than things.
But it takes more than effective use of space to build a world. Staff should be in relevant yet professional costume. The decor needs to be functional and aligned with the imagined world. Games and prizes should also reinforce the experience.
Establishing a unique world within the conference requires imagination and a willingness to push boundaries. It can be done within an exhibition stand of any size but has greater impact when large stands are used.
3. Make It Interactive
Give people a chance to interact with your exhibit booth to help build a relationship with them.
There are two kinds of interactivity when it comes to exhibition stands: isolated and social.
Installing touch screens with quizzes or choose-your-own-adventure style product information is isolated interactivity. It can be effective for sharing information and getting people to understand how your product or service can solve their problems.
Social interactivity often has less of a direct line to your products and services. But it can accelerate engagement through a more dynamic experience.
An example of social interactivity at exhibition stands involves word clouds. A word cloud is an image composed of words where the size of each word indicates its frequency or importance.
Give people access to a keyboard connected to a word cloud generator.
Ask them to type words or phrases related to a theme. It can be serious or playful. On a large screen that everyone can see, display the word cloud.
As people type, the cloud will change in real-time. Often major themes emerge and there’s usually a laugh or two. The goal of social interactivity is to generate conversation and a sense of community right there at your booth.
4. Add a Selfie Spot
There are many ways to make exhibition stands ready for Instagram. The most common and popular, when done well, is the selfie spot.
People love telling their followers “Here I am!” so don’t miss the opportunity to get your logo or product in each pic.
You can set up a specific backdrop or “frame” for people to take a fun selfie. Be sure to make it clear what hashtag to use.
Or, if more than one aspect of your stand is a compelling selfie spot. Put cut-outs of footprints on the best place to stand. This will also help you manage traffic.
If you have a mascot, celebrity spokesperson, or well-known executive at the conference, have designated times when they’ll be there for selfies.
5. Use Bold Images
The best exhibition stands can draw people from across a crowded room. Because of noise levels, music won’t work.
Instead, get loud with images.
Get high-quality images that relate to your brand or product. Those featuring people or animals are the most compelling. Enlarge them beyond the expected size for the greatest impact.
The goal of bold images is to spark the imagination. Consider extreme close-ups or intricate patterns to draw people in.
Make sure that tables, chairs, and lights don’t block the view.
6. Support a Charity
This idea for attractive exhibition stands focuses on what happens at the stand, more than how it is built. Still, it can be used in combination with any of the above.
Before the conference or trade show, choose a charity that aligns with your brand. Let them know you’ll be supporting them throughout the event.
Your support could be a one-time donation or a percentage of each sale made at the trade show. Some companies give employees time to volunteer with charities that need extra hands.
Include information about your donations in event programs and notices. Use stories and images at your stand to show why you’re supporting the charity.
Without detracting from your own products and services, help visitors learn about your chosen charitable organization. Being an active corporate citizen can build loyalty among customers.
Know the Value of Your Exhibition Stands
It’s easy to go overboard when creating exhibition stands. It’s just as easy to do very little to make yours stand out.
Before spending time and money on a stand, know its potential value to your business. Set useful targets.
For example, establish how many leads you need to generate. Or how many units you need to sell on the spot.
Plan your exhibit booth to serve those goals. Think about how often you’ll need to reuse the stand and how to keep it fresh.
At Pod Exhibition, we offer a wide range of options. Our team of experts is ready to help you find the right stand for your business. Call or drop by our showroom today!