28th June 2011
Advice from the Experts: Make an Impact with your Exhibition Stand
Exhibiting can be one of the most effective marketing activities for companies - providing you with hundreds of face to face meetings with potential customers within a short period. It can also be a pretty daunting prospect, especially for those who are new to exhibiting.
Exhibiting can be one of the most effective marketing activities for companies - providing you with hundreds of face to face meetings with potential customers within a short period. It can also be a pretty daunting prospect, especially for those who are new to exhibiting. There are numerous options for stand design, backdrops, furniture and lighting not to mention promotional giveaways. Mistakes made over your exhibition stand can be costly - not merely because of the cost involved in exhibiting but also in the loss of potential business.
It is for that reason that we decided to get some advice on how you can make an impact with your exhibition stand from our suppliers - experts in the exhibiting field! They have provided some great pointers that will help you to achieve an exhibition stand that you can be proud of and that will help you to reap the benefits of exhibiting.
Layth Karagholi, Managing Director of Total Displays Ltd, has given us some great tips on how to avoid the most common exhibition mistakes:
- Set clear goals and objectives - set targets for new contacts, sales opportunities and meetings with existing contacts. This will help your planning to be more focused and means you can better brief your suppliers on the design of the stand.
- Promote your attendance at the exhibition with your database of clients ensuring you will have plenty of visitors to your stand. With a busy stand you are much more likely to attract passers-by.
- Invest in the right display stand solution - getting the right layout for your stand will help you to achieve your goals. For instance, making sure you have some stools and small tables where you can chat with people is important if you want to meet with lots of prospects. Having a great exhibition stand with a constant stream of visitors will make an excellent impression, especially if you are targeting alliances with other people at the event.
- The design and layout of your whole stand is critical in attracting people to your stand. The graphic design should promote your brand and be clear and compelling. The stand should be eye-catching and appealing. The exhibition stand and design should convey your message to passersby. If the stand is too cluttered, overly complicated or too plain and boring you could risk missing out on potential business.
The best way to achieve a great display that conveys your message and attracts visitors to your stand is to select a display supplier who has a talented design team that can help you get your graphics and messaging exactly right. Poor planning almost always leads to a sub-standard display solution that will not withstand the rigours of multiple events, will not create a great impression and will not provide you with the flexibility to upgrade or to change your graphics at a later date.
This is key advice from Layth. Planning is essential to any effective piece of marketing and so is utilising the expertise of your suppliers.
Damian Tremlett, Managing Director of Babycad Ltd, advised us of the free online tools that can help you to design your own stand. Damian’s advice is that visualisation of your stand is critical – it helps you to plan, to get approval and to communicate your ideas effectively. There are easy, low cost (or free) online visualisation tools available that help you to create rendered images in minutes without training. You can then hand these images over to your designer so that they are immediately in the picture, ensuring you avoid any confusion and save time.
Babycad provide a free to use visualisation tool so that you can layout your ideas, or just see how previous banners or graphics will work in a different space.
Damian also gave us an excellent tip about using these design tools to publicise your stand before an event:
“We've seen some exhibitors publishing their designs from Babycad online and using them to market their stand prior to the trade show... and very successfully too, visitors stop at your stand just because they recognise it - simple!”
I’m sure you will agree that this is a very practical and effective tool to help you understand exactly how your stand will look and to create a buzz around the design prior to the event.
Lastly, here are a few quick tips that the Exhibitions team have picked up over the years: A key concern when exhibiting should be making sure your branding and company message is going to be seen by visitors. Display your logo at a high level so that it can be easily found and make sure that your stand is well illuminated, especially your sales message. A well illuminated message attracts attention. Ensure any sales message is clear and succinct and can be read in a matter of seconds. Also good for attracting the attention of passers-by are moving displays of photographs or 3D images if appropriate to your sales message.
Make sure any leaflets or brochures are displayed prominently and are easy to pick up. Display products and images in a prominent place and at eye-level to attract people’s attention.
Exhibition suppliers often provide hints and tips on their websites for how to make the most of exhibiting and you will find that they will be happy to help and advise you. By doing a bit of research beforehand you will be ensuring that you make the most out of your exhibition.