“Simple is often better – you only need to give your customers and prospects one thing to remember, not ten to forget”
Some choice advice for anyone considering exhibitions as part of their sales and marketing plans; ask yourself three questions:
Why? How? What?
- Why am I exhibiting?
- Do I want to sell my product? Am I generating leads? Maybe just offering my services? Or Do I want to meet my customers? Is my top goal to generate brand awareness? Do I just want to collect data?
- How are we going to achieve it?
- By creating interest – you only have a second or so to get the attention of your audience, so by creating intrigue, you’ll capture their attention even before they’ve set foot on your stand. Then you can give them the option to interact with the stand and your product. The experience is guaranteed to stick in people's minds long after they have walked away. When the show’s over, measure your ROI and gauge whether you should do it again.
- What? (This is the practical stuff)
- When you get to the what, start thinking about product demos, how your branding should be applied to the stand design. Consider if you’ll need storage. Will you be offering drinks or eats? Any audio visual requirements? Do you have to have furniture? If you want visitors to stay for a long time – yes, or no if you prefer a constant flow.
The fun bit
Once you have answered the three questions, the fun starts and you can start looking at the design of your stand. Where possible, and if budget and time allows, work with an experienced exhibition designer – the value they add will be well worth the investment.
Keep your message very simple and visible. Will visitors be able to tell at a glance exactly what you do? Think about the visitor journey and the flow around your stand. Will people know where to go and who to go to if they have a question?
Make sure the layout and design are attractive but not gaudish, make people feel welcome. Remember to avoid barriers, and not just structural – sometimes those barriers can be human, in the form of an overly eager sales team!
Once your visitors are in, you need to make sure they stay and engage: consider interactive elements while capturing data; if it’s relevant to your message or product, include games and challenges, and install a leaderboard – your audience is likely to be competitive and they’ll come back to your stand to see updated results and beat them if necessary.
The experience, and your brand, will be sealed in their minds.
Location, location, location
Think about your position within the exhibition hall, there are no bad areas exactly, just badly designed displays. You need to design your stand for the position you are in to get the best results.
Size does not always matter
If you have the budget, go ahead and dominate the show, like we have done for Kennards Hire with our custom ISOframe exhibition design. Have your own seminar theatre and you’ll become the hub of the show. But don’t worry if you don’t have the budget or the space – make it an intimate and personalised experience.
Remember: your exhibition stand design needs to deliver on your objectives, and it needs to give the right message about your brand. It’s what you put on your display that visitors will take away with them.