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Tomato
An in-booth storage area is usually an eyesore, but in NatureSweet Ltd.'s 20-by-60-foot exhibit at FMI Connect, it became an eye-catching design element. The company disguised the storage space inside a large, red, tensioned-fabric structure to resemble a sliced tomato resting at an angle. The graphics on the roughly 14-foot-tall façade featured yellow seeds, and a green arch bearing the text "Always the Perfect Tomato" was attached to the surface.
The other end of the arch landed in a pile of NatureSweet tomatoes in packages and crates. A tensioned-fabric door placed in the middle of the "slice" granted access to the functional storage space, while plastic ribbing on the outside of the tomato offered stability and shape.

It's a Keeper
When you're an architectural resin-panel maker, doling out product samples to trade show attendees poses a logistical problem. If the samples are too small, they don't accurately reflect varied textures, patterns, colors, etc. If they're too large, attendees won't pocket them and take them home. That's why Lumicor decided to combine form and function at NeoCon 2014 in Chicago's famed Merchandise Mart. It cut its large panels – used for everything from interior room partitions and tabletops to outdoor benches – into portable, branded 3-by-3-inch tiles and rounded the corners.

Instead of stopping there, it added four small, rubber "feet" to the bottom, thus turning the petite sample into a coaster. What's more, the company attached branded USBs packed with product information to the surface of the tiles. Equal parts product sample and functional freebie, the unique giveaways fit the bill for Lumicor, while easily fitting into recipients show bags as well.

A Shoe In
People in the fashion industry tend to be attracted to shiny, pretty things. So it makes sense that U.K.-based shoemaker Benjamin Adams London gave away miniature versions of its signature sparkly pumps at Magic Market Week in Las Vegas. Specifically, the company bestowed key chains featuring bedazzled heels to members of the media covering the show, along with its press kit. Distributed in the trade show's press room at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center and packaged in a simple black box emblazoned with the company logo in gold, the tiny treasure put a smile on the faces of fashion writers while ensuring Benjamin Adams London was a name that would not be soon forgotten.
Tivo's World
Record

To drum up some media buzz at the International Consumer Electronics Show and communicate that its Roamio digital video recorder offers more content than any other streaming media player, Tivo Inc. set a record. It created an in-booth living room where three Las Vegas bachelors planned to hunker down to break the previous world record for most consecutive hours spent watching television. The trio of TV fanatics, which made the Tivo exhibit home for the four-day show, bested the previous record by watching 87 hours of live and streaming content via the Tivo Roamio. Not only did the stunt attract dozens of media outlets, but also the booth's homey living-room setup beckoned to weary attendees, many of whom watched alongside the world-record hopefuls and soaked up Tivo's key messages.

Mini Madness
To launch its new electronic cigarette designed specifically for women, VMR Products LLC, aka Vapor Couture, wanted to create a spectacle at the National Association of Convenience Stores Show. Since few things are as buzz worthy as a free car, Vapor Couture placed a Mini Cooper in its exhibit, filled it with packages of the product, and urged attendees to guess how many were in the car. Staff and signage explained that the attendee whose guess was closest but not over the actual number of e-cigarettes would win the vehicle. Custom wrapped with Vapor Couture branding, the shiny car was the star of the three-day show, garnering a steady stream of guessers and giving staffers the chance to tout their new product to each one. At the show's end, the Vapor Couture booth was a hub of excitement, crowded with hopefuls and media crews that had come to hear just how many products were in the car – and who had won the enviable prize. While only one person drove away with the car, Vapor Couture departed the show with a trunk full of leads thanks to the buzz-building promotion.

Packet Power
Portion-Pac Chemical Corp. wanted to communicate the amount of waste generated by the plastic bottles used for household cleaners, and at the same time promote its packet-style packaging as an eco-friendly replacement for bottles.

So at Greenbuild, it created a roughly 8-foot tower of opaque white-plastic, quart-size bottles, which became the focal point of its exhibit. The tower was placed near a sign explaining that one case of its glass-cleaner packets, called Portion-Pacs, was equivalent to 48 cases of ready-made solution, and could save 100 pounds of plastic and 56 pounds of cardboard from entering a landfill. Now that's how you show and tell.
Itty-Bitty Bio
Business cards are typically impersonal bits of paper, but Mirror Show Management Inc. decided to offer up a little something extra on its cards at EXHIBITOR 2014. To wrap up their conversations in the booth, staffers gave attendees one of their cards. The front featured the photo and handwritten name of the staffer, while the reverse side listed contact info along with answers to fun, get-to-know-you questions such as "What's the best part of your job?" The quirky questions revealed a little something extra about the staffer while adding a dose of memorability to an otherwise boring medium.
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