It's always better to show than tell. That's why Polk Audio Inc. staged a demonstration at the International Consumer Electronics Show atop a 20-foot-long trampoline. Polk claims its UltraFit sports headphones are specially designed to stay in users' ears while they jog, work out, or play sports. To prove it, the company hired a gymnast and a skier to perform aerial stunts on the trampoline while wearing UltraFit headphones.
As the performers bounced, flipped, and soared above attendees' heads, the UltraFit headphones stayed put – proving Polk's claims in a memorable way that's likely to keep its key message firmly on buyers' minds long after the show ends.
Stocking the pressroom at a trade show with freebies is one way to curry favor with members of the media. But it can be a costly gamble that doesn't always drive traffic to the booth. To do that, you have to include a call to action, which is exactly what Girly Go Garter, a division of Andy Paige Style Inc., did at Magic Market Week in Las Vegas. Promoting its product of the same name, Girly Go Garter decided to forgo the usual free-for-all in favor of a more strategic approach using a semitransparent pink envelope through which a piece of paper with the text, "We have a gift for you," and the booth number was visible. When opened, recipients discovered a gift coupon with space for contact information and instructions to redeem the coupon in the booth for a free Girly Go Garter. The traffic builder was a success, surpassed only by the popularity of the Girly Go Garter, which outsold all other new products on the show floor 14-to-1. Now that's an exhibit-marketing campaign with legs.
A Bull Market
How much money could you possibly make with a mechanical bull? The Rodeo Bull Co., based in Port Charlotte, FL, wanted
to answer that question for attendees walking the aisles at the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions Expo. So it erected a simple banner stand with some impressive statistics. Beneath the logo for its Galaxy mechanical bull ride, the banner read, "Over 9.1 million people worldwide ride a Galaxy mechanical bull every year, generating in excess of $50 million in revenue for their owners. Are you getting your share?" Below, a series of bulleted testimonials from five happy bull-owning customers reinforced the statistic, with one claiming the Galaxy single-handedly put his daughter through college. Talk about a banner stand full of no-bull benefit statements.
What do bath salts have to do with trade show exhibiting? For Irvine, CA-based DisplayWorks LLC, they were the perfect medium to convey its "Relax. We've got you covered." tagline. At the 2013 Healthcare Convention & Exhibitors Association Annual Meeting, which attracts a mostly female audience, the exhibit house used a bath-salt-making activity and corresponding giveaway to relay its message and tempt attendees to spend time in its booth. Visitors chose any of six different essential oils to add to a glass jar full of coarse salt. Standing at an unfinished wooden desk at the front of DisplayWorks' 10-by-20-foot spa-themed space, each attendee chatted with a staffer as the latter added the attendee's chosen oils to a jar of salt and then stirred and shook it to create a custom combination. While booth visitors walked away with a useful, audience-appropriate giveaway, DisplayWorks scored valuable time with attendees to relay
its tagline and communicate its capabilities.
Silence is Golden
Acoustiblok Inc. wanted attendees to experience the
soundproofing powers of its products at the Inter-national Builders' Show. So the company created a
cylindrical structure from the proprietary material
used in its sound-deadening supplies. Resem-
bling an upside-down bucket atop a thick lid, the
branded enclosure housed an MP3 player blaring
hit songs. A staffer occasionally raised the bucket-
like portion of the display, allowing sound to
escape, which attracted attention from passersby.
But when the staffer resealed the enclosure, the
tunes were imperceptible to attendees. The simple
demonstration was proof positive for prospective
customers – and music to Acoustiblok's ears.
Yogurt is about as sexy as Elmer's Glue. But to draw attention to its free samples of Chobani Greek yogurt and give its product a little more visibility at the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners show, Agro Farma Inc. created a one-off reception desk/distribution bar. The bar featured a traditional counter, and housed a cooler full of yogurt behind it. But instead of wood-grain panels on the front, it had an inset glass-
covered compartment that Agro stacked to the gills with its colorful yogurt containers. A backlit white panel served as the perfect backdrop to 15 vertical columns of containers stacked 15 high. The simple yet sophisticated display drew attendees' eyes to the 10-by-20-foot exhibit and gave them a visual sampling of what Agro had to offer.
Common sense dictates that a booth space in which your back wall faces the men's restroom isn't exactly prime real estate. So to make the best out of a less-than-perfect plot at EXHIBITOR Show, Milos America Inc. turned to bathroom humor.
It outfitted its back wall with a fabric graphics panel featuring an image of six urinals, along with the text, "Washed your hands? Then we're ready to make a deal with you. Visit our stand – just behind this wall." Attendees came face to face with the cheeky graphic upon exiting the men's room, and more often than not, the clever wall served as the perfect conversation starter.