Smell of Success
Exhibit design typically focuses on using sight and sound to attract attendees, often to the neglect of the other senses. But at Greenbuild 2018, Ambius (a subsidiary of Rentokil Initial plc) guided visitors by the nose to its booth. The landscape company, which was primarily marketing its bespoke commercial interior landscaping services, reached beyond its 10-by-10 footprint by dialing up its AQ570 scent machine and casting a woodland aroma down the aisle that had people sniffing out the booth. After addressing visitors' questions about the woodsy fragrance, staffers transitioned into explaining how Ambius offers tailored landscapes to complement customizable aromas. Now that's an exhibiting strategy that makes good scents.
Creating a big bang in a small space can be difficult – not to mention prohibitively expensive. But marketers at FieldCast B.V., a provider of fiber-optic cable systems, concocted an attractive and easy-to-install exhibit element that commanded attention without breaking the bank. For its exhibit at Integrated Systems Europe, an audiovisual and systems-integration show in Amsterdam, FieldCast crafted a branded DIY wall along a high-traffic aisle. The alluring facade comprised six rectangular elements, each of which was made of mesh-like fabric in the company's corporate-yellow hue. Marketers stretched each strip of mesh between two wooden frames and then used simple white cords to attach the frames to metal hooks embedded in the traditional exhibitry. Combined, the low-cost, lightweight display turned what was an unappealing exhibit opening into a couldn't-miss aisle-side element that branded the space and caught the eyes of passersby.
While obvious displays are often mundane, sometimes a conspicuous choice is the perfect way to drive home your point in an instant. That's why Leotek Electronics
USA LLC chose an overt tactic for its booth at Lightfair International. To communicate that it sells lighting for streets and roadways, it ran what looked like a paved road (which was actually a strip of black laminate with two yellow stripes running its length) down the middle of its booth. Even the dullest tools in this show's shed made the immediate connection between Leotek's offerings and the apropos roadway.
Exhibit managers often want graphics that stoke attendees' interest and highlight their companies' products and services, but savvy marketers also desire designs that authentically convey their firms' personalities. Splainers Inc. checked all three boxes at the Society for Human Resource Management
Annual Conference and Expo with a back-wall design that broadcast the company's offbeat, playful nature. Seeing as how Splainers specializes in producing custom video content with an emphasis on storytelling and lo-fi animation, the company hung three floor-length panels of white paper from its pipe-and-drape back wall. Each panel featured hand-drawn content rendered by a Splainers animator that answered three questions: "Why Storytelling?," "Why Splainers?," and "Why Video?" The humble back wall stood out in a sea of silicone-edge-graphic sameness and clearly
conveyed Splainers' quirky qualities.
The Great Outdoors
It ain't easy being green – or standing out on the trade show floor. Actek Ltd. did both at the 2018 International Consumer Electronics Show with an exhibit that underscored the portability of its projectors. The combination of large-format forest graphics; green, grass-like carpet; outdoor furniture; a selection of its miniature projectors and outdoor screens; and a shiny, silver Airstream trailer made the booth look more like a high-tech campsite than a corporate
exhibit. The outdoor (and outside the box) ambiance helped the booth stand out like a hipster at a nursing home and reinforced the fact that Actek's projectors can perform anywhere and everywhere their users take them.
The Hole Kit and Caboodle
Rather than simply telling booth visitors about your products' benefits, it's far more effective and memorable to show them. So at EXHIBITORLIVE, the annual conference for trade show and corporate event marketing, Matrix Frame USA LLC used its own exhibit architecture to prove its products' point. To illustrate how its new edge-lit exhibit technology lacked internal power cords, designers inserted a large circular cutout into each of the stand's vertical walls. Text near the cutouts read "Look ma. No bulky power supplies." In addition to clearly illustrating a key benefit of the new product, the tactic also drew the gaze of passersby, many of whom stopped to consider Matrix's offerings or at least take a second glance through the opening and into the interior of the stand.
Ask an Expert
Sometimes attendees want to go straight to an engineer for a deep dive into the technical aspects of a product. In a crowded trade show booth, however, it can be difficult to pick out these product experts. Window Book Inc., a postal-solutions software company, solved this problem at Print in Chicago by having its technicians don white lab coats while the sales staff remained clad in traditional business attire. The simple accoutrements allowed the experts to shine like a lighthouse in the night and ensured that visitors didn't have to waste time figuring out who held the answers to their more complicated, in-depth