Brand Communication At Trade Shows - Who Are You?

Does your trade show exhibit provide clarity as to who you are and what you do? Does your exhibit convey your brand and message?

Large and small, many companies make the fateful decision to throw up a trade show booth and hope for the best. As a person who has experience from both sides of the aisle (walking the show as a buyer, working in a space, development of an exhibit and now designing and servicing) I am amazed to find companies who do not put a lot of thought into and behind the message they are communicating. If you think of trade shows and events as your second line of sales and marketing attack (the first line of attack should be your sales force on the road), you should expect your structural sales force (trade show exhibit) to perform as well as, be as knowledgeable of your product and relay your message as well as your human sales force. In a way, your trade show exhibit should be your number one sales person.

Let’s be specific about what a good trade show exhibit should entail. A good exhibit will be well branded with your company’s identity so that anyone who makes contact with you at a show will remember you when they get back to their desk and need your product or service. A good exhibit will be interactive, just like a human sales person, and draw them into your sphere of influence, excite them and make their experience with you more memorable.

A good exhibit is open, inviting, well lit, and functional offering your visitor the ability to move around and feel comfortable (who wants to stay in a box with people hovering over you like vultures?). A good exhibit tells your story or communicates your message in thirty seconds or less. A good design incorporates vivid graphics that back up your message. A well designed exhibit matches your company in scale…if you are a large company and you have a small booth, the perception is immediately noted in your prospects mind (this is a subject for another day).

In the end, step back from your exhibit and look at it from your prospects or even better, from your competitor’s perspective…what’s your message, who are you?