Friday, June 29, 2007

Trade show sweet treats

Who knew Canada’s BookExpo would have produced so many nuggets of useful information for fellow trade show exhibitors.
Though the show was, on the surface, to be primarily about books – the publishing, marketing, selling, and writing – most BEC-goers knew that being on the trade floor was also about eating, drinking, and getting swag i.e. (free things).
Among the most useful items, were cloth and canvas bags, which come in handy for packing the various other promotional pieces from the other booths. Those items included: books, posters, postcards, T-shirts, mugs, toys, stationery, stickers, candy, and assorted items that get nabbed by grazing conventioneers.
The promotional products proved to elicit huge responses and were a great investment. That should tell you to pay close attention to your promotions for your next show. There are many attendees and exhibitors alike who love the swag aspect. That marketing ploy will also help engrain your name/logo/brand into their heads well after the event if you picked the right poison, so to speak.

A Smash Hit Displays offers pop up trade show options, trade show booth graphics, portable banner stands, and trade show lighting. These items will give you the foundation for a great display space. But, in order to achieve greater response try pondering the many promotional advantages available. Try to put yourself in the attendee’s place to figure what would motivate you to purchase from this or that particular exhibitor. Keep in mind the promotional items will last, for some, well after the event ends so try and keep your company information prevalent so when they use your item they see or think of you well after the event’s impact has faded.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

At BookExpo silly dress is optional

The attached article references a trade show for book publishers but talks about an aspect most need to address when exhibiting. How do you stand out from the crowd? Setting yourself apart from your competition is key. In this particular instance the mode was inexpensive but achieved the desired result… stand out!

One of the characters wore an overly large nametag. The nametag read, “Hello, I'm Scott" and was worn as a vest.

"There are 30,000 people here," he said. "Everyone wants to make a name for themselves. The challenge is how you get your name out there and be remembered."

There were a few others in costumes which provided the same response as the oversized nametag. Something to discuss, an icebreaker, attention getter, etc.

These small and inexpensive ideas are just a few ways to separate yourself from the crowd. At your next show, once you’ve purchased the base elements for your display space including your display, ie. (truss designs, fabric tension structures, custom backlit displays), trade show flex floor, and trade show signage, take a few moments to ponder how you could promote yourself in an inexpensive manner. Remember the ideas from the article as a little brainpower can go a long way.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Trade Shows true value: Follow Up Leads

Trade Shows true value, believe it or not, is after the show with the "follow-up"!

For most it's tempting, after the preparation to get ready for a trade show and the hours on the trade show floor, to just come back and collapse. But as I stated earlier, the real value of being at a trade show -- why it's worth your money -- comes when you follow up on the leads and contacts you make.

Our author offers some guidelines in order to make the most out of the "follow-up":

Organize leads while still at the trade show. Most people return from a trade show with a stack of business cards.

Start tracking contacts and leads as you get them. For every trade show, bring a separate-bound notebook, stapler, and pens.

Start the follow-up process as soon as you get back to the office. You don't want to lose the momentum created at the show. Rule of thumb is if you wait more than 48 hours to start following up, there's a good chance you'll never do it.

Have a follow-up "summit" in your office to review leads. Bring all those who will have follow-up responsibility together to discuss the leads, make follow-up assignments and set deadlines. Turn those business cards into an action plan.

Make the first follow-up. The easiest way is to send each lead an e-mail. Thank them for visiting your booth, remind them who you are and what your company does, and tell them they'll be hearing from you again soon. Personalize your message and don't be too vague in your subject line, so they don't think your message is spam.

Do what you've promised -- immediately. If you've had good interactions with strong leads and promised to do something for them when you got back to the office do that right away.

Add all your new leads and contacts to your company's mailing list and contact management system. The people who aren't in the market for your product or service immediately are still involved in your industry, so they're most likely to know others who may be interested in your products or services.

As I've stated countless times on this site, trade shows are one of the most effective and efficient ways for business owners to build their customer base. But they take work, before, during and -- especially -- after the show. You've got to turn that pile of business cards into gold. Proper preparation would have included the purchase of certain displays like pop up display units, trade show booth panels, brand identification through high end tradeshow booth graphics, and possible accessories including banner display stands, trade show lighting, and special custom printed carpet. All these items combined with your pre, during and post show marketing will no doubt help increase bottom line sales and increase your new customer base.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Why bother building a Brand?

Picture this scene: At a conference in Dallas not long ago, a graphic designer from Kentucky sits down with another gentleman and exchanged business cards. One looks at the others logo, and studies the name on my card. He knows that logo and asks if they’ve been in touch in the past. The other echoes the same sentiment realizing they know each other from somewhere in time.Although they weren't able to pinpoint when or why they'd exchanged mail previously, they guessed it had been at least five years back. Neither had an extraordinary memory. Rather, one had created a distinctive visual identity for the other’s logo, while the other had devoted effort to linking a name with creative marketing. For at least five years the look and reputation had lurked in the other's memory banks, while thousands or hundreds of thousands of other business identities had come and gone without leaving a significant trace. Why? Memorability. This short analogy illustrates a key element of successful branding.
I’ve touched on branding recently in a few posts to show you the customer how important a good brand can be for your existing and new customers!
WHAT IS BRANDING?Branding is the process of creating distinctive and durable perceptions in the minds of consumers. A brand is a persistent, unique business identity intertwined with associations of personality, quality, origin, liking and more.Though most people associate brands with big firms, the smallest enterprise can use branding techniques to ensure similar rewards. When a home-based entrepreneur ties a nicely designed tag on all her products telling the story of who she is and where her creations come from; she's branding her goods. When the local super market bundles groceries in bags bearing its logo instead of generic "Thank you!" or plain bags; that's branding.While we associate brands with national names like Coca-Cola, Wendy’s or Breyer’s, branding doesn't require the economic windfall of a Nextel. Branding doesn't even require a product or a tangible delivery mechanism.
Techniques of branding include association of a company with logos, distinctive colors, slogans, musical sounds or songs, unusual qualities, mascots, packaging, a memorable name, behavioral hallmarks and much more. The attached article concentrates on why well-executed efforts to create a brand -- instead of merely doing good work or producing good products -- pay off.
To further understand the benefits of branding and position your business for such please read the attached article as it goes into greater detail what can be achieved with some properly timed effort.

Such effort and branding can be found in a one of our booth displays. Research and learn from the attached article on how to properly brand your services/goods. Then talk to us concerning your forum into the trade show arena. Whether you need banner stand exhibits, table top pop up display, trade show exhibit truss, a fabric trade show exhibit, a customized trade show exhibit, or striking trade show booth graphics, A Smash Hit Displays is your branding headquarters. Learn from the best in the business on how to reach the next level for your trade show marketing.

Monday, June 25, 2007

What size Trade Show is best for you?

Though bigger is not necessarily better, the high foot-traffic at big trade shows can drastically increase a small company's sales. But even a modest booth at a huge show can cost tens of thousands of dollars. And that's just the tip of the iceberg — add the cost of staffing, shipping and construction, and you've made a pretty big investment, especially for a small company. Big shows often last for several days and sometimes move to different cities, further increasing costs.

Just as important, the competition for attention at big events is stiff enough that your small booth could easily get lost in the crowd. Unless you can afford to make a splash, you may not get noticed.

The potential rewards for small or local trade shows may be more limited, but they make good training grounds for the mega- and midsize events.

Is bigger better when it comes to trade shows? I believe its in the eye of the beholder. What I do believe is being totally prepared for your next show. Thorough preparation would include proper homework beforehand. Such preparation includes finding a tradeshow pop up booth that best suits your needs with the proper trade show signage to make your brand sing. Further preparation could include trade show light and trade show booth flooring to set your booth apart from the crowd. Whether you go big or small take a look at what A Smash Hit Displays can do for you and your brand.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Use Trade Shows to learn about customers and competitors

One of the best venues to learn about your competitors and what they're shopping is in fact... a trade show!

Before the show begins, familiarize yourself thoroughly with those competitors. Read their literature and look carefully at their displays. Distinguish their displays: fabric abnner stands, pop up display boards, panel trade show booths, truss booths, fabric trade show displays, or custom graphic booths. Then use that competitive knowledge to gain more information. Talk to people, ask lots of questions, pay attention.

Some of the best information pertaining to your competition is from their customers. That´s one of the many good reasons to talk to as many people as possible at trade shows. Every prospect has possible information you need, even if they don´t want or need your products. Find out what are interests them, from whom they buy and why, how much do they purchase, when do they purchase and at what price.

The answers don´t have to result in a sale to be valuable. Scout new suppliers, scope out new and existing competitors, and even attempt to partner with allies and shop for other trade show venues -- all this by listening.

If you see your competitors´ materials in the hands of a visitor, ask them what they think of the company, its people and products. It never hurts to hear from decision-makers about what they believe is important. Moreover, people like to be asked their opinion. It makes them feel important. You´ll be surprised at just how much information some people are willing, and eager, to share. Ask them and they´ll probably tell you.

Exhibit trade shows understand that most of this information is never printed. So, we are ever ready to talk at length to our customers about how to secure and understand such information. Once all the information is assimilated you still have to prepare you booth space. Taking that into consideration there are a ways to separate from the pack: tradeshow booth graphics and trade show carpet.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Trade Shows on a Budget

The following is a great excerpt from an article I just read. It entails how to exhibit at a trade show on a budget.

Whether you are a seasoned veteran or newbie to trade show exhibiting, you'll swiftly learn exhibiting at a trade show is a valuable way to showcase your wares to many new customers simultaneously. Though, whether you're tackling a major trade show or a smaller industry specific show, the show can be quite an expensive endeavor. Our author has been gracious enough to share a few tricks along the way to keep your budget in line.

Securing a space

First and foremost, you'll need to rent space. A standard 10x10 ft. space (typical size at trade shows) will run about $5,000 at a big show (PC Expo, etc.). At smaller shows, the rental cost can be less than half, or even free. Other additional expense may be carpeting(though this will most times set you apart from the crowd), furniture, and Internet access.

Display booths - buy or rent?

Besides the rental for your space you have the daunting task of stocking your booth with a display and/or accessories. If you are unsure of your future show itinerary ponder the notion of renting. You'll invest around $2,000- $5,000 to purchase a booth. But, rentals will lower that out-of-pocket cost $500-$900. Further, A Smash Hit Displays will apply the cost of your rental towards an after-the-show purchase. So, you enjoy the best of both worlds.

A Popup display or panel trade show exhibit can be as cheap as $3,000 for a basic 10-foot display. Alternative routes include fabric banner stands, backlit graphic displays, burst displays, and can run $250-$10,000.

Whether you buy or rent, customize your booth with tradeshow booth graphics to build your brand and give your booth extra curb appeal. We've seen it up close; eye banging graphic booths draw huge crowds.

Setting up

Remember you'll need to transport your display to the show.
If you ship directly there, the cost of delivery from the loading dock to your booth space, referred to as "dryage," will average about $20-$60 per 100 lbs. (it varies by city).
You can avoid dryage by having everything shipped to your hotel room and transporting them to the show yourself; your hotel and the trade show hall will likely have carts available.
Ask yourself whether you'll be using a computer for screen shots or demos? If so, bring your own equipment; renting devices at or around the show will cost big bling. And you can ship these beforehand as well.


Expect to frequent trade shows in the future? Consider investing in light equipment, like lighter pop-up booths i.e. Xpressions Pop Up, a space-saving flat-panel monitor (you can get one for as little as $1,000), or even accessories i.e. pedestal stands. Something to definitely make you stand out in the crowd is your own flooring like a digital printed carpet or a custom logo carpet which will run $600-$1600 for a 10' x 10' space.

In order to spare you from seeing 90% of your marketing material in the local trash bins, determine what you want visitors to remember about your business. Don't forget to include contact information and your Web address on every piece. And leave off event-specific information (like the show date or name) so you can reuse the leftovers.

Plan far in advance

Lastly, and we've covered this subject ad nauseum over the last few months, start planning a minimum six months in advance (some experts recommend as many as nine months) - at least in terms of your booth and space rental. If you begin with only a month to go you'll pay extra fees for space, inflated shipping costs, rush charges for creative work, and higher airfare.

Remember, A Smash Hit Displays is your local one-stop-shop for "all" your trade show needs and we also offer first rate consulting at no charge for all those industry specific questions.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

The Natural Life of Brands

I've decided to make another entry concerning brands. Yesterday explained the importance of branding your goods or services. Today's article references how they have become a most valuable asset and about the four key characteristics for creating eternal brands.

Great product quality

This is a necessary but not sufficient characteristic. A brand will not survive unless it is rooted in a great product. Regardless of how unique the brand, the product has to deliver quality.

Get there first

Quality by itself is not enough. Often great brands own the central benefit of the category. All successful brands can successfully defend their market share.

Exploit brand strengths

Big enduring brands make the most of their strength in the market. From a branding perspective this means reminding consumers of their strength. Whether this is Coke reminding consumers that it is `the real thing' or Heineken communicating that it is the `number one imported beer' or BA claiming to be `the world's favourite airline' - it all comes down to success breeding success.

And finally ... the brand above all else

Any company that owns truly great brands has only achieved this because they live to serve the brand. This may sound extreme, but consider the first few lines of Coca Cola's Mission Statement: `we exist to create value for our share owners on a long-term basis by building a business that enhances The Coca-Cola Company's trademarks. This also is our ultimate commitment.'

For those of you out there attempting to create your brand or initiate branding for a new product or service, take a few moments time to read the attached article. In order to truly own your brand at your next trade show event, look at some convention displays by A Smash Hit Displays. These include Popup display, indoor banner stands, lighted graphic displays, and pinpoint trade show signage graphics and will further your quest to make your brand a long term success and separate you from the crowd at your next show.

The 10 Commandments of Branding

Should you want to learn the actual 10 commandments concerning "Branding" as written by an anonymous author then by all means peruse the attached article.

The reason I've addressed this article is due to our customers. It's not surprising any longer to learn from a new customer that they have virtually no branding when it comes to their services/goods.

Branding could be one of the more important marketing avenues for separating yourself from the pack. It's what people remember when they see your logo or hear your jingle. More importantly for those done correctly it aids you in attaining a person's short list. That list is similar for most when it comes to goods or services.

When a customer is ready to purchase or use some one's services they will most likely already have a short list of vendors with which they will contact. Branding allows you to ascend to that list or retain your ranking if already on the list.

When customers hear trade show display designs they think of us. We pride ourselves on our reputation for an easy negotiable website. Plus, when it comes to banner stands, pop up trade show, portable folding booth, truss trade show booth, xpressions exhibits, flex floors, and trade show lighting we are universally known as "the best price in the business". That's what building a brand can do for you as well. So, take a few moments to remind yourself of what your plan of attack should be concerning your own branding.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Guerilla Guide to Trade Shows

Before your next trade show exhibit, visit at least one show in the same industry. Pay particular attention to your competition and look for unusual or eye-catching displays. Realize to which exhibits you are drawn. Figure out why they stand out and catch your attention. Then, find a way to incorporate those kinds of ideas into your own booth. For its often the incorporation of ideas other than your own that kindle new ideas pertaining to your arena of interest or business. To learn the complete breakdown on guerrilla warfare trade-show style then please read the attached article.

A Smash Hit Displays often glean graphic ideas from other exhibits. We believe you should definitely know what your competitors are doing and what other ideas have made their way to the showroom floors. Besides the best graphic packages in the business, we offer eye-catching popup displays, fabric tension displays, truss displays, and trade show counters. We also create stunning digital flooring and custom logo interlocking tiles to add the wow factor for potential customers and put you head and shoulders above your competition.

Friday, June 15, 2007

One Face to the Customer

Do you want to make your selling easier, faster, and cheaper. Well then, build a brand. When doing so try and remember to present one face to your customer. For some companies present many faces to their market and their customers which can be quite confusing and threatening to a businesses future. A trend has been growing within our borders; a systematic erosion in the ability of a company's brand to attract prospects and maintain customers. This is most evident in companies where multiple business units sell to the same customer. In order to learn more about the subject please read the attached article in its entirety.

A Smash Hit Displays attempt to show one face in the form of our marketing and sales to all customers at all times. That face represents a united front when it comes to product quality when considering the likes of a fabric pop up display, truss wall, Xpressions Pop Up, backlit graphic exhibits, or even a custom tradeshow booth, and trade show signage. For when you make concessions or changes to your marketing message, it confuses your existing customer base as well as the potential customers. It is always best to be consistent with your marketing and sales messages and show your happy face at all times.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Getting the most out of Trade Shows

We'd all love to get the most out of our trade shows. Sadly, that's not the case in most instances. We hope after reading this retort and the attached article that you have a firmer grasp on how to do so.

As has been a recurring theme with our past month's articles: planning, preparation, presentation and follow-up are your four keys to getting the most out of trade shows.

Trade shows can be extremely effective outlets to showcase your products and services to large numbers of customers and potential clients. It's estimated 110 million people attend more than 4,000 shows in the United States and Canada every year -- and those numbers are also increasing. Surveys show that customers rate the importance of trade shows above trade magazine articles and regular sales contacts in terms of helping them make buying decisions. Most attendees are present because they of their purchasing influence. They want to see how your product works and what it looks like while evaluating the competition.

As an exhibitor, you want to use a trade show to secure existing business relationships, attain new customers and potential partners, and become familiar with opposition.

In order to learn the author's intent behind the four elements referenced above you'll have to read the attached article.

A Smash Hit Displays give our customers the best pop up exhibits, panel trade show display, trade show signage, not to mention our sexy fabric pop up displays that money can buy. Call or email us and we'll not only arm you with the best tradeshow signage and tradeshow pedestals needed, but the information in which to best prepare for your event.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Drive Media Interest at a Trade Show

Our author offers many tips on trade show preparation but for our sake we're going to focus on the media aspect. As most of you are already aware, trade shows are a vital component of most companies’ marketing campaigns. Especially for small businesses, trade shows are beneficial because they provide an opportunity to reach a multitude of potential new customers, investors, industry analysts and journalists over a very short period of time.

However, there is a kicker for most small businesses have limited resources. This means they must extract the most from each appearance as possible.

Extracting the most from each appearance means finding the best ways to secure media interviews. Planning ahead is key. Utilize the media list provided by show management, and send out mass emails to reporters and publications who'll be attending. If you are one of the unlucky ones whose show doesn’t supply a media list, search for past articles on the event and construct a list of publications and reporters. In most instances, the same reporter may be assigned to cover the show again. But, if not, they should be able to point you in the right direction.

Initiate contact at least two weeks prior to the show. Remember, you have competition and need to separate yourself from the pack. Try offering breaking news or a unique angle that distinguishes your company from the other businesses.

Also important is securing speaking engagements; either as a keynote speaker or panel participant. Remember though, speaking engagements require planning and creativity, so start early and identify several themes within your comfort range. Try not to focus solely on topics directly related to your business for the most enticing speakers can go outside the box to grab their listeners attention.

A Smash Hit Displays often go outside the box when trying to create that perfectly fit trade show graphic, or outfit our customers with just the right tradeshow display portable display pop up or portable folding booth. Remember, the peripheral components can't be forgotten for often these acrutrements will etch your company in the customer's mind as opposed to your competitors. Such accessories include custom carpeting and portable tradeshow tables. But, before all these components try and attract that much needed media attention to have it work for you as opposed to your fellow exhibitors. Happy hunting.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Critical Issues for Exhibitors

The following critical issues exist for exhibitors before, during and after their trade shows.
Exhibitors should specify detailed marketing objectives they desire from trade show participation; a show should not be viewed as a separate event, but as part of their overall marketing process. Some of the pointers have been shortened, so for those who desire the full explanation reference the attached article.

Exhibitors should research and select the right show to achieve their objectives i.e. (shows that attract decision-making attendees interested in your product or service). Look carefully at the show's history, the companies that exhibit, and attendee profile information.

Make the participation decision with sufficient lead time to plan properly for the show. Our author volunteers 16 weeks is minimum time frame to take full advantage of the pre-show marketing opportunities and discounts.

Set specific, realistic sales objectives (e.g., number of qualified leads or new customers) for the show and plan strategies to achieve them.

Work with show management well in advance to find out requirements and restrictions, and find out what services they can provide (e.g., signage, rental of displays/furniture, hotel and transportation discounts, special entertainment or VIP services, pre-registration list of attendees for pre-show promotion).

Make sure you get a copy of the exhibitors manual and review it carefully.

Plan and purchase your tradeshow popup exhibit, truss walls, fabric trade show displays plus trade show counters combined with your folding trade show booth, since freight, both to and from the convention center as well as within the convention center, will be a major part of cost. Many convention centers allow companies to set up a tradeshow popup exhibit without use of labor.

Select and train booth sales staff.

Have a system in place for lead qualification and follow-up.

Being the premier tradeshow supplier, we offer as much guidance as our customers request for their upcoming shows. We are a resource of which many have taken advantage. Our expertise will help you conquer your trade show fears and allow you to achieve your trade show goals.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Pre show marketing and post show follow-up

For those of you waiting for the next installment in our much anticipated trade show 101 series, we are saddened to exclaim it ended last week. Should you desire to review or peruse one of the "todo importante" daily installments, please reference our trade show archives.

As for today, we're off in a new direction. Heading to a trade show without advance reconnaissance is in most instances a waste of time and money. Pre-tradeshow marketing is essential to informing potential customers about your booth wares. To get off on the right foot, try asking the show organizers for a mailing list of people signed up to attend the event. At the minimum, send an announcement of your hours and your booth number to attendees. Further, let them know what you're selling/promoting/pimping, etc.

Taking that a step further, implement a two-part promotion: Send out half of a prize in your initial announcement, then reward the prospective clients on your mailing list with a second prize when they stop in at your booth.

It's a classic promotional gimmick — but surprisingly... it works.

Don't forget the press either. A good press release can elicit media attention for your industry trade press — and it's a most useful way to contact clients and prospects. In fact, should you have the resources for only one pre-trade show marketing effort, a press release may be your most cost-effective option.

Post-trade show follow-up is also essential to maximizing your investment. Upon returning from the show, send follow-up letters to the entire mailing list. Next, send the qualified leads you garnered at the show a more robust follow-up mailing package.

Finally, in my opinion and the author's, there's no substitute for an old-fashioned telephone call. It's the most powerful post-trade show marketing follow-up, and you should be sure to call every lead contacted at the event.

A Smash Hit Displays finds the follow-up is the easiest way to attain new customers for MOST don't return phone calls or emails. Should you require the peripheral products to outfit your booth like a banner stand, pop up display units, trade show signage, an extreme truss display, or adding that bling to make yours stand out i.e. digital printed carpet, then look no further. Our products combined with your pre and post show marketing will no doubt boost your time and resources and aid in attaining new customers!

Friday, June 08, 2007

Tips for Exhibit Displays- Part6

Sad as it will be for some of you out there; this will be the final chapter in our six part series-Trade Show 101. Tips for Exhibit Displays

Design counts
The average trade show attendee spends less than three seconds looking at your display so your design MUST grab their attention quickly. Avoid complex explanations or elaborate descriptions of the company; instead, focus on messages that will prompt visitors to stop at your booth, where you can explain everything they might need to know.

Finally, initiate the buying process approximately two months prior to the show allowing proper time to create the "right" artwork. Always, remember less is more when it comes to trade show graphics!

Keeping a display in good shape
To ensure longer life for your display, make sure it can be securely packed. Look for a display with a case that has separate compartments for each component. Avoid tucking non-display components in the case.

Ponder shipping expenses
Consider air freight, ground shipping, and personal car requirements when determining the overall cost of a particular display system.

Why not rent? Before you buy a display unit, consider renting one. An estimated 40 percent of first-time exhibitors never return to another show. Keep in mind that some dealers will allow you to apply 50% to 100% of the rental cost toward a later purchase, should you decide it is worth the investment.

Save money with a refurbished display
Buying a refurbished display can be a less expensive alternative to buying a new one, although you may not have any guarantees of reliability or performance. You will still have to spend money on new signs to accompany the booth.

Attempt a dry run
Be sure to set up your booth at least once before you get to the show. That way you're assured of no surprises with lights that don't work or display frames that are tweaked on shipment. Once you know how to work a given booth, it should be easy to do. You certainly don't want to be reading about "tab A" and "slot B" while prospective customers are arriving at the show.

A Smash Hit Displays has shared the tips above to newby customers many times in the past. We love to school those who are willing to learn the methods that create winning displays at trade show exhibitions. We also offer top flight graphics in sign trade shows, assistance with purchasing displays like pop up exhibits, lighted graphic displays, custom fabric tension displays, modular trade show displays, guidance with accessories like tradeshow tables or further enhancing your display space with portable carpet. This expert assistance will make sure you company's brand/image/services make the attendee aware of your booth during that all important 3 second window.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Trade Show Booth Pricing- Part 5

We're coming close to the end of our series on trade show 101. This fifth installment should be interesting for the novices out there concerned about trade show pricing.

Trade show booth displays and their pricing can range quite a bit based on many factors: size, brand, and accessories chosen. The author has added some basic guidelines.

A basic 10 pop-up display or panel trade show display will run $2,500 to $6,000, including
graphics and accessories. Larger displays such as truss exhibits, backlit displays, or modular systems with more components run $7,000 to $12,000, and custom exhibit booths can cost $20,000 or more. Both pipe and drape displays and pull-up displays can be found for around $1,000. Banner stands can range from $175-$1300 depending on the style and bling.

Individual trade show graphics can cost anywhere from $20 to $300, depending on size and material. A full photo mural backdrop can cost over $1,000.

Pricing for tabletop banner stands usually falls between $500 and $1,500; table banners run $500 to $700. While throw covers can run $75-$500 depending on the graphic needs of the exhibitor.

Trade show booth warranties
Trade show displays receive a lot of rough treatment from attendees, exhibitors and especially those setting them up. You should expect a lifetime warranty for all pop-up frames. Warranties on panel displays vary a bit more, lasting anywhere from two to five years.

It's a good idea to read the fine print in the agreement in case your display breaks. Some manufacturers require that you send it back to them, which is typically a 2 week turnaround time, which could put a freeze on your trade show attendance. Others, however, can be fixed in the field or at the distributor.

We at Smash Hit Displays price our displays aggressively. We strive to be the lowest price on the Internet for any trade show item. Occasionally we are upended but we are always willing to beat any price given from a fellow competitor. So, for the best attention to detail and explanation of what you should expect before, during, and after your trade show experience call A Smash Hit Displays. We treat our customers the way we expect to be treated- with courtesy and honesty.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Choosing a trade show equipment vendor-Part 4

Here you are the fourth chapter in our series of proper trade show preparation and introduction to the industry.

A good trade show equipment vendor will display much of the characteristics of a consultant - look for a dealer who asks you questions. The should consider your goals, your travel and setup requirements, and the type of product you are promoting. By analyzing your responses, these vendors should be able to recommend a specific type of display to best suit your needs.

The next step will be working on your trade show signage - colors, fabrics, and extras, along with any signs and graphics you might desire. If you require assistance with this step, be sure to ask the vendor if they can provide graphic design services. Not all vendors provide such services - in that case most will recommend a graphic designer.

Our author offers two types of vendors of which you should be cognisant. Most take pre-built display systems - pop-up, panel, and all the other types discussed here - and customize them with graphics and other accessories.

However, for companies with more specific trade show display requirements, there are custom exhibit booth builders who will design a display system with you and build it from scratch. These types of booths are much more expensive and are usually only purchased by larger companies who attend trade shows regularly.

The majority of trade show equipment is sold by vendors and directly from manufacturers to distributors. Working with distributors allows you to make direct comparisons, because they typically carry models from multiple manufacturers.

Manufacturers and custom booth builders are more likely to be able to make any repairs you need. Resellers of pre-built systems may be able to do simple repairs on-site, but may have to ship your booth to the manufacturer or other repair facility for more significant work. Be sure to ask how the vendor handles repairs, especially in emergency situations.

A Smash Hit Displays is your local trade show expert. Our success depends on the success of our clients so we take extra care to make sure your display and remaining booth space make the statement needed to garner the right kind of customer. We offer a wide variety of trade show merchandise from pre-built or custom displays to full graphic development and flooring. Just see for yourself: portable pop up displays, panel trade show booths, truss stands, fabric trade show exhibits, custom trade show booth, trade show flex floor and trade show display lights.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Booth Designs for Trade Shows- Part 3

I know... I know you couldn't wait for the third installment of our series on trade show display preparation. Well, here you are... enjoy!

Once you've chosen the type of display, next determine a booth design to best represent your brand or image. A combination of little text and big bold images are the most effective way to attract the potential customer's attention. And the most flexible way of adding custom text and images is Velcro or magnetic-backed signs that can easily attach to your trade show booth. Just remember; less is more when it comes to graphics.

Much of your signage will have a long shelf life if you take care of them. Your logos and basic product information are generally consistent for most shows. However, by using multiple signs, you can update one or two for show-specific offers or timely information, and not have to reprint your entire graphics package.

An alternate route to attaching signs to the fabric or panels is to make the panels or fabric itself into a graphic. This is typically done by creating large photomurals that are applied to the display. This can create a much more striking visual presentation, but can be harder to update and can add substantially to your total cost.

Consider the size and construction of your signs carefully. While panel displays can support large, flat images, pop-up displays require smaller graphics or flexible signs that can be applied to curved surfaces. These considerations can change your entire trade shows both design.

Graphics for your display are usually purchased from the booth vendor, but you can also turn to graphic designers who specialize in producing artwork for trade show displays. Getting professional help with your trade show booth design is probably a good idea.

Most systems can also be equipped with lots of other fancy add-ons. Some trade show booths are designed to include counter space that can hold computers for demonstrations, others have shelves that protrude from or are recessed into the display, and most include at least some basic lighting attachments. Consider what products, promotional items, or literature you want to distribute or display to determine what extras you need: depending on the type of display you choose, the weight and size of the items you can display will change.

Should you require someone to assist with graphic creation then look no further. The best trade show design firm in the industry is but a phone call or click away. We also offer: tradeshow banner stands, panel trade show booths, trade show graphics, fabric trade show exhibits, custom backlit exhibit, and printed carpeting to make your display stand out from the crowd and elicit the response you desire.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Different types of convention displays- Part 2

Part 2 of our series on the trade show display industry covers the two basic types of display options available to consumers and the most popular- pop up and panel system displays.

The basic structure of convention displays determines how easy they are to transport and set up. Both pop-up exhibits and panel displays, two of the most common booth designs, are easy to travel with and assemble.

Pop-ups consist of folding frames that are covered with magnetic-backed fabric, vinyl, or plastic panels. When expanded and locked in place, they create curved, waves, horseshoe, or straight walls that stand on their own and make up the back wall of your booth. They are easy to set up, lightweight, compact, and can weigh as little as 70 pounds while packing into 1 or 2 cases. The cases can support weight, and be used to display small products or sales materials.

Although they offer more setup flexibility and stability, panel displays are heavier and often require more than one person to assemble. Typical weight can run more than 175 pounds. Their flexibility of shapes and available options allow for differentiation when it comes to the competitive landscape of trade show floors. Their cases generally don't convert into show podiums and must be stored elsewhere during the show. Set up and tear down tend to take a while longer than their pop up brethren.

Though these are the basic two types of displays either of which will suit your needs well; there are different and newer options available to separate yourself from the pack. Should you decide to go a different route and choose a display other than a popup or panel, then check out some of our other display options: banner display stands, trade show booth truss, tension fabric structures, backlit graphic exhibits, or custom exhibit systems.

Friday, June 01, 2007

Trade Show Display Introduction- Part 1

This is the first of five installments covering the trade show experience from beginning to end. Enjoy!

For most, a trade show can offer a simple and convenient way to target relevant buyers. An exhibitor's greatest challenge can be separating your boothspace from the visual roar of neighboring booths. Ideally, you have to convey your message forcefully and effectively in just the few seconds while attendees are walking by your trade show booth.

A portable trade show display offers a cost-effective way to make such a statement. Portable folding exhibits, as their name suggests, can be packed into cases that can be checked onto airlines or transported via standard ground shipping services.

In most cases, the portability allows you to set up the displays on your own, avoiding the added frustration, complexity, and expense of dealing with professional movers and builders. It would help to be aware of varying union rules: many halls require that union laborers be used to transport trade show booths and equipment.

The right show booth will assist in your trade show experience from beginning to end. We offer many display options, including fabric pop up displays, perfectly composed portable banner stands, custom carpeting and trade show counters to make your booth sing.