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    6 Tips for a Killer Building Products Trade Show Booth

    6 Tips For A Killer Building Products Trade Show Booth

    Observations from IBS can help your tradeshow investment pay off

    Walking down a tradeshow aisle-especially large shows like IBS-you’re bombarded by shapes, colors, movement, and messages.  It’s all jumbled mess of sensory overload.  It’s easy to get lost in the shuffle as an attendee but far worse to get lost in the crowd as an exhibitor.  Here are some thoughts on what made booths successful at the show:

    1) Define Your Space

    Often it’s difficult to tell where one booth stops and another starts.  Make sure your booth clearly defines your territory-walls, enclosures, carpet-anything that says “This area is unique” is critical to getting noticed.  The huge Ford commercial vehicle space was nearly empty except for the trucks, carpet and people.  Sound boring?  It wasn’t.  The open space was noticeable (and welcome!) and it kept the focus on their products.

    2) People Make the Difference

    It sounds superficial, but attractive, engaging people bring a booth alive.  And attractive doesn’t have to mean “pretty” (although it clearly doesn’t hurt), but rather, people who are born to talk to others and smile when they do it.  Watching the attendees, you see time and again how true this is.

    RELATED: 5 Things To Do for Your Post Show Wrap-Up

    3) Style is Everything

    The booths that got noticed were tech-driven in their design (simple, clean, and open), with the exception of natural/green products where a rustic theme was common.  Dated designs stood out for all the wrong reasons, and like an old website, they seemed to unfairly date the products they promoted.

    trade show
    Tech-driven or themed designs get noticed.

    4) Booths

    The K.I.S.S. principle (“Keep It Simple Stupid”) was behind the best booths we saw.  The crammed and jumbled booths were easy to ignore (and there were a lot of them!), but the open and airy booths with only a few areas of focus were traffic stoppers.  What I observed: one idea, one message, one solution = many, many visitors.

    Keep your booth simple, with one idea and one message.

    5) That’s Entertainment

    No matter how stylish or fancy or informative a booth was, it’s hard to beat booths that entertain as well as educate.  There’s no denying that the booths with crowds and lines were the ones with a reason to stop by other than to pick up a brochure.

    RELATED: 4 Ways to Attract Trade Show Attendees to Your Booth

    6) Remember Why You’re There

    I think most exhibitors are hoping for traffic to build awareness and drive leads.  One company (will remain nameless) paid what I’m sure was a lot of money to have branded carrying bags set out with the show programs.  Unfortunately both times I stopped by, the staff was too busy talking to one another to notice the people bothering to visit their booth.  So if they were hoping to drive awareness of their staff’s disengagement, well, it worked. 


    How can I make my tradeshow booth stand out?

    Define your space with walls, enclosures, or carpet to make it unique and noticeable. Keep it simple and focus on one idea, one message, and one solution.

    What makes a booth successful at a tradeshow?

    Engaging and attractive booth staff, a tech-driven or themed design, and the ability to entertain while educating visitors.

    Does booth design impact the perception of products?

    Yes, dated designs can unfairly date the products they promote, while modern and simple designs have a better impact.

    How important is it to have engaging booth staff?

    Engaging people who can talk to others and smile while doing so can bring a booth to life and attract more visitors.

    Should I prioritize entertainment in my booth?

    es, entertaining elements in a booth can attract more visitors and keep them engaged beyond just picking up brochures.

    About The Author

    Elton Mayfield

    Elton's career spans media, production, digital and building industry expertise. His diverse experience makes him nimble, innovative, and curious โ€“ always pushing the envelope to create extraordinary work that delivers real results for our clients.

    2 thoughts on “6 Tips For A Killer Building Products Trade Show Booth”

    1. There’s no doubt that some companies try to showcase far too much, and the best strategy is always to just focus on a single product or two, especially when you base your display around the demonstration of a single new product.

    2. People really do make the difference. An engaging smiling booth staff are just more fun to stop and chat with. The least inviting booths are those with seemingly disinterested folks scanning messages on their smart phones.

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