Trade Show Displays BlogWelcome to BERLINdisplays Trade Show Displays Blog! Discover tips and information to help improve your trade show displays and point of sale exhibits to stop traffic, engage customers, and showcase your company and products!
Making your trade show booth accessible to people of all ability levels makes good business sense. To ensure that anyone can engage with your products and services, it’s important to plan how your booth will be set up.
After all, approximately 22% of Canadians identify as having a disability according to the Government of Canada. This means the likelihood of someone attending a trade show in a wheelchair, with a cane, or with a visual impairment is very high. And the probability increases with attendees coming from outside of Canada. In 2010, Canada joined the United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. This ensures persons with disabilities have the same rights as others, without discrimination.
Here are some considerations for setting up your trade show booth to be accessible.
Be sure that your flooring is flat and flush with the rest of the trade show floor. This will ensure individuals can access your booth safely. Trade show booths with carpet or raised sections can make it difficult and dangerous for someone who isn’t steady on their feet. If you need to have a raised section of flooring, include a ramp wide enough for a wheelchair.
Develop the literature you’re handing out at the trade show with the visually impaired in mind. Consider having a version of your brochure with large font or in braille. If these types of adjustments don’t fit within your budget, think of alternative ways to make your information accessible. For example, directing attendees to a website or giving a phone number to call after the show.
Will you have media, such as a video, playing in your booth? If so, keep in mind individuals who are hearing impaired. Add closed captioning to the video, or have a script printed out so they can still retain your message. Also, pay attention to the level of audio. If it’s too loud it may be too distracting for some.
To learn more about Canada’s accessibility laws, click here. And be sure to consult with the trade show in which you’re exhibiting about specific regulations they may have. If you’re ready to design an accessible trade show booth, BERLINdisplays can help. Call us for details.
Determining the best ways to spend marketing dollars can be overwhelming. Trade Shows are a great opportunity to reach a large audience and make significant sales. But if the Trade Show is not the right fit for your business, it can add a lot of extra expense rather than increasing your ROI.
Consider the following to ensure you choose a profitable Trade Show that will provide you with the largest return on investment:
- Choose a Trade Show that puts your name on the map. If your business has a lot of competitors, be sure to choose a show that will allow you to set yourself apart. Get creative with how you position yourself with what you give-a-way and the display set-up you choose. This will help prospects remember your name.
If you’re a startup or small business, focus on building your sales before choosing a national or international Trade Show. Look for a low-cost local show or industry show for networking opportunities. Weigh the expense of the Trade Show versus expected revenue.
- Choose a Trade Show in which you can build relationships with new customers. Consider the industry and where you might develop new unique leads. Research the reputation of the show and determine how much one-on-one time you’ll get with potential customers.
You may find the Trade Show that is most profitable for your company is not an obvious choice. For example, if you sell dog beds you are most likely planning to attend a pet expo. But instead, you might consider an RV Show! The likelihood of someone selling dog beds at an RV Show is slim, but the majority of RVers travel with dogs. Attending an RV Show would allow you to showcase your product while building relationships with new customers.
- Choose a Trade Show with buying power. Attend a show that has a reputation of sales. Networking and showcasing your product is important, but make sure there is high ROI potential as well.
- Choose a Trade Show that is logistically feasible. To increase profitably, you want to attend a show that is within your set limits. Determine what equipment you need to move to the show, what type of displays you’re setting up, how many people you need, how many brochures or business cards to print, what type of transportation and lodging is required for your team. Mapping together the logistics for a Trade Show prior to choosing one will help you decide if it’s the right fit.
We know that planning for a Trade Show can be overwhelming at times, but this checklist will help you set your business up for success. Choose the right Trade Show for you and walk away with a profit and loyal customers.
If you need assistance with logistics for your Trade Shows, we can make it easier for you. And if you’re a small business that is testing the waters with Trade Shows, consider renting your exhibit before investing in your own display.
We display you at your best. Contact BERLINdisplays for more information, or to begin the planning and design for your most effective booth ever!
Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan Press On! has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.”
― Calvin Coolidge
The Art of Persistence
Attracting and connecting with prospective clients at trade shows involves attracting the prospect’s attention, engaging with them in meaningful dialog, and getting to know them, briefly. Then you have to disengage to continue to build your prospect list. There is art in attracting and connecting with new clients, but disengaging is also an art, knowing when you’ve exchanged enough information and, to mutually agree for a follow-up call, to provide more solutions.
It takes practice and skill to time it just right. You never want to leave a visitor to your booth feeling as though you aren’t interested enough to continue, and yet you do need to keep connecting with more prospective clients.
A well-designed exhibit booth will help attract quality prospects. BERLINdisplays offers the very best in exhibit structures and graphics to capture the attention of good prospects for you!
From complete custom and modular exhibits to portable exhibits and POPup towers, BERLINdisplays offer the best in design, sales, service, rentals, including complete booth management worldwide services. You’ll have more interest than ever before with a unique, attention-grabbing exhibit booth that will attract the right prospect’s attention and drive potential customers toward your sales team.
Generating excitement before the first word is spoken makes reaching a deeper conversation easier. Let your display capture the prospect’s attention. Then your team can provide the answers and get to know prospective clients on a deeper level. Your sales team will find that booths that attract and intrigue potential customers make the initial conversation much easier!
Disengaging is a difficult skill to learn, but it’s a big mistake to stay with new prospects too long. Yes, they are interested but, they still have to visit the whole trade show. The last thing you want to do is to take too much of their time or, seem desperate rather than dynamic and, exciting. Leave them wanting a little more, so the response to your follow-up contact will be just as positive as the first connection. Watch for signals that it’s time to move on, then use your practiced techniques for disengaging in a way that leaves the prospect feeling good about your connection and looking forward to the next conversation!
Watch for signals and disengage.
- Low fuel. Once the potential client has run low on questions, and you’ve qualified them by gathering all your required information of what their company needs. Disengage! This is a great time to wrap up, offering to follow up and meet again.
- Not a match. It’s important to explore the possibilities, but once you recognize the visitor’s interests or budget aren’t a good match for your products or services, it’s time to part ways.
- Later follow-up. Maybe next year. When you and your prospect realize there is a potential match, but it may take time or input from another department to work. You’ve still made a valuable connection, but it’s time for both of you to establish what they require and the schedule for you to follow-up.
- Prioritizing. If you’re having a great show, there may be a line forming to speak to the representatives at your booth. Show your current conversation partner respect and interest by paying close attention but ration your time with all contacts.
Practice your technique.
- Follow-up offers. Tell the visitor you’re glad to have met them, recap a few ways in which your companies are a good match, and offer to follow up after the show. This is a classic, positive way to put a gentle end to a conversation.
- Tag team. If the line is growing, or the questions turn to someone else’s field of expertise, hand the prospect off to someone who can further the connection.
- Acknowledge the mismatch. There’s nothing wrong with being honest about the timing or fit being less than ideal. Offer to send a link via email, call to check in at a future date, or offer swag that has your contact info which will allow the visitor when to follow up with you.
- Acknowledge the crowd. If more visitors are lining up, work to create a connection and interest in the visitor who is front and center, but be honest about having to ration your time. Express the desire to continue the conversation at a later date and arrange a follow-up call or, date.
Good exhibiting at a trade show requires well thought out designed graphics and a well-designed exhibit. The proper well thought elements will attract the right- prospects to enter an exhibit space and ask questions. We offer the services you need to make your booth the most attractive to the customers you want to meet. It’s up to you to reach out and make the connection, then leave the visitor wanting more so you can follow up and create a lasting client relationship!
We display you at your best. Contact BERLINdisplays for more information, or to begin the planning and design for your most effective booth ever!
Recently, a client of mine asked to meet and discuss my exhibit recommendations for the
Upcoming exhibit season.
This request is in keeping with the results of EXHIBITOR Magazine’s Economic Outlook Survey for 2018. That is, that 2018 is likely to be slightly better than last year in terms of show schedules and, budget allocations.
* 30 percent plan to increase spending from last year
* 68 percent believe that their trade show display program is an investment with continual long-term results.
Most important though is for my client (who has only purchased bannerstands and literature racks) to begin with some basic questions for planning their exhibit plans.
1. What are the objectives?
2. What is the overall budget?
3. What is the quantity and, size of these shows?
4. Where are the shows located?
5. How many staff work at the booth?
6. What problems have they had in the past?
7. What displays do they presently have and, can they be renewed or, repurposed?
8. Who will be installing and dismantling the exhibit? Your staff or, a trained professional?
9. Are there any exterior shows?
Note to break down the exhibit budget detailing the different expenses. These expenses would include hotels, meals, travel, transport, graphics, labour, and associated costs.
List as well, electrical and, booth management costs, communications, booth cleaning etc.
So often, I have seen a company purchase one exhibit to use across the country or, continent, where transport costs would be far greater, than by purchasing multiple exhibits to keep in their own regions and, ship less.
Bannerstands would definitely apply here, where the cost is so little compared to repeating transport charges using couriers.
Now, we even have modular, fabric 8’x 10’ and, larger exhibits that pack smaller and lighter for easy low cost shipping. Many have options to mount monitors, shelves and, literature. And they have their own lightweight molded shipping cases.
It is important to note that one of the lowest expenses of a trade show exhibit is the exhibit design (10%) which will be used in multiple shows
The majority of exhibit costs are in the per show costs such as transport and, travel of equipment and personnel; exhibit floor space (25-35%); show services (19%); shipping and drayage (10%); promotion (10%); booth staffing and travel (20%); miscellaneous (5%).
Exhibit space Exhibit space is typically 25-35% of the total event budget. Compare your company’s trade show history and ROI in relation to your overall budget. Discuss these shows with your sales staff when determining the right amount of space to contract per event. Events often offer early registration, which can save on the cost per square foot.
Exhibit design Your exhibit design should meet the majority of your exhibiting objectives. An experienced exhibit company can save you money in the long run, by suggesting different exhibit structures that can be reconfigured, while using less material and, pack more efficiently.
Exhibit transport Consult your “exhibitor’s kit” for receiving cut-off dates. Understanding these dates can help you avoid additional fees associated with late rush or, close-to-deadline shipping.
Drayage Drayage or, material handling, is the cost for the show organizer’s labour transporting your exhibit from the loading dock to your booth space. Rates are typically based on weight and can be charged in different currencies depending on where the show is organized. This is important since drayage can be expensive and, is unregulated. A U.S. based show can add 25% to your drayage budget just in currency exchange. Incorporating lightweight materials and, smaller shipping containers – such as fabric graphics and, molded plastic cases can reduce drayage costs substantially
Discuss this with your exhibit professional for low coast solutions such as, shipping to your hotel. Remember…drayage is not a one-time cost.
Installation and dismantle services Installation and dismantle (I&D) teams are responsible for setting up and tearing down your trade show exhibit. Smaller exhibits may not require I&D, but larger exhibits often do. This can be a costly expense, so work with your exhibit solutions provider to design a smart exhibit that can save on setup and tear-down man hours.
Setup a complete spreadsheet to itemize all your expenses, calculate your budget and track your trade show spending for space, exhibit-related costs, promotions, show services and staff.
Actual costs can be compared show to show and over a period of years by both budget items and, trade show.
Calculate your ROI of your trade shows comparing costs to sales profits from show visitors.
BERLINdisplays’ experienced staff has handled exhibit and booth services since 1980, in North America and Europe.
Our exhibit team’s experience, knowledge and, industry contacts can save your company time and money while allowing you to focus on what your team does best… Marketing and selling your product!
We are equipped for long-term booth storage at our warehouse facilities in Montreal, Toronto and, Europe to further enhance booth management services. To learn more about managing expenses call or, email us at info@BERLINdisplays.com or, telephone 514-939-3600
After many years, and, I mean decades! I finally began playing guitar and, taking regular lessons.
Every day, I “touch my guitar”, as my teacher, wisely suggested to me.
Am I great? No!
But I do have a repertoire of over twenty songs, which is enjoyable.
Theory is work and, still takes discipline. But it produces results over time.
A successful exhibit program demands that you do your homework and, do your theory to have a successful program as well. Whatever your objectives.
Some possible company objectives follow below.
And help provide the reasons to why your company is exhibiting at a particular show or, shows.
* Corporative objectives- Brand support, company awareness or, image.
* Departmental objectives- To promote a product, service or, industry need. These objectives validate why a department is investing employees’ time and money to exhibit at this show.
* Build employee morale and, educate in order to offer employees with educational and, networking opportunities. Employees attending Trade Shows help build personal growth while learning industry trends, attending industry events, talking to consumers, meeting competitors, gathering more knowledge of the company and, meeting principal executives.
Possible objectives (Partial list. Please add your own):
* Direct sales of product or, services.
* Gather leads for post-show follow-up.
* Research new offerings in your industry.
* Write orders at the shows.
* Meeting prospective buyers.
* Educate your sales staff on old and, new products.
* Have sales team retreats to develop comradery.
* Meet competitors.
* Introduce/demonstrate a new product or, service.
* Benefit from having a portable showroom.
* Research consumer opinion of old and new products or, services.
* Finding new products or, services to add to your offerings.
* Gathering market or, competitor’s information.
* Meeting competitors.
* Finding sales reps or, distributors.
* Attend networking events creating more opportunities.
* Introduce/educate new employees to your industry.
* Find decision makers
* Introduce company executives to clients.
* Provide media opportunities to have your company CEO interviewed.
* Provide industry events for your company experts to speak at seminars.
* Reinforce a company image or, create a new image.
* Solve customer problems.
No matter what the objectives are, you will have to have or, establish a budget to exhibit at shows.
Usually, the budget will be established by your sales and/or marketing team.
Now, go research your company’s past and, present show schedules.
Speak to your management to find out what they have been doing in the past.
Ask for past show photos, schedules, locations, suppliers, past budgets and, post-show reports.
Ask! What are the present budgets and objectives? Ask! For the exhibit photos with plans and…
Ask! To see the actual exhibits.
Make an inventory of your company’s present exhibits and their condition.
Include a graphics inventory which will have products logos. Verify all are current.
Walk similar shows in order to see other exhibitors’ exhibits.
Be prepared for the unknowns when exhibiting. Plan supplies with backups for the unexpected changes at a booth location or, equipment/software failures.
Have a list of local contacts at the show should your require onsite services.
Note: This Blog entry is directed to managers organizing a new exhibit program.
Existing managers and, programs will benefit from this information by reviewing their present exhibits, graphics, procedures and, objectives.
A future blog will follow focussing on advertising and, publicity.
Your company website should be reviewed too, with regards to your exhibit program.
Are previous shows with photos on your website?
List your upcoming shows with show contact name on your website including the products and, services that will be exhibited.
Remember! Choosing and designing the physical exhibit, doing the publicity and, travelling are the fun parts.
Doing the theory of researching and planning your exhibit program of why and, where to exhibit, form the foundation for a successful program.
Looking for a partner to design and create a trade show booth that will stop traffic, engage your potential customer, and make your company memorable within your industry, even after the trade show has ended? BERLINdisplays is that partner.
This is a list of the bigger trade shows, conventions, and expos coming to Montreal in the third quarter of 2019. Now is the time to begin planning to wow attendees at the events that will have the greatest impact on your business.
We display you at your best. Contact BERLINdesigns for more information, or to begin the planning and design for your most effective booth ever!
2019 Montreal Conventions Third Quarter
Palais des Congres de Montreal
4127978 Canada inc. (Major Comics)
This congress is a leading event in the area of acoustics and vibration
Parc Jean-Drapeau on Île Notre-Dame
Palais des Congres de Montreal
Otakuthon Cultural Society
Quartier des Spectacles
Designers from around the world show their collections in Montreal.
Fairmont Queen Elizabeth
The largest event of its kind in North America, the convention & trade show is an opportunity to network and discuss important issues impacting the pulse and special crops industry.
University of Montreal, Pavillon Lionel-Groulx
Language learner festival.
Palais des Congres de Montreal
IIR International Congress of Refrigeration
Palais des Congres de Montreal
An event where all players in the industry are gathered under one roof in order to give installers the benefits of doing business with NAPA.
Palais des congrès de Montréal
Organized by the World Molecular Imaging Society (WMIS), the congress is led by senior academic and industry professionals who have widely recognized expertise in molecular imaging.
Palais des congrès de Montréal
International Federation of Beekeepers’ Associations expo for beekeepers and friends of bees.
Montreal International Interior Design, a trade event bringing together designers, architects, buyers, business consultants, targeted consumers, and the media.
Le Westin Montréal
Conference for those in the energy sector.
Palais des congrès de Montréal
Conference for the spa industry.
Full disclosure…I was never a Scout!
I should have been, but moved to another area in the city before I received my official Scout tie.
That said, I adopted the Scouts’ motto “Be Prepared!”, which has always helped me throughout my life.
Being prepared for the least anticipated unknowns in the exhibit world is no different.
It’s even more important than a bottle of water for an afternoon in an amusement park, since the financial risks are much greater.
Make an Emergency Toolbox to take to all your shows and update, re-inventory it for all shows.
Clearly mark which case it is packed in. Even pack an extra emergency toolbox in an alternate case.
* email all printed files to a Cloud account, in case of computer failure
* speak to your hotel and/or venue maintenance department who usually will have assorted lights, extension cords and, a workshop, if needed
(I even was able to fix a pair of boots in Calgary, after-hours, in my hotel’s workshop.)
* update and re-inventory for all shows
* verify that all items in your Emergency Toolbox are not Restricted and Prohibited Items for travel
Here’s an Example of an Emergency Toolbox
(Update & Re-Inventory For All Shows)
* 1st aid kit including bandages, splints, Band-Aids, pain relievers, antihistamines)
* cash in local currency
* protein bars
* flashlight with spare batteries
* city map showing venue location and hotel
* a full PRINTED set of exhibit installation instructions
* flash light with extra batteries
* a printed Fact Book/File with:
* destination venue address
* venue floorplan
* exhibit floorplan
* local venue contacts (in case you need reprint graphics)
* packing tape
* scissors & Xacto knife
* pens (lots of them…they walk away)
* permanant markers in assorted colours.
* white gloves
* magic eraser brush
* fabric stain removal stick
* business cards (you’d be surprised how often these are forgotten)
* note pads, post-its
* stapler and staple remover
* extra lead sheets (more than you think you’ll need)
* digital camera with power pack/transformer/batteries
* paper clips
* rubber bands and rope
* sewing kit
* Velcro tape (hook and loop)
* duct tape
* carpet tape
* packing tape (clear and opaque)
* screwdrivers with assorted heads
* instructions for return shipments
* shipping labels for return shipment
* batteries (all types)
* extension cords/
* multi outlet power bars
* assorted light bulbs.
* extra struts
* Allen Keys (metric and British)
* multi-function knife
* assorted nails and screws.
* glass cleaner
* cloth / paper towels
* solvent cleaner
* super glue & epoxy (I once super-glued a client’s model that arrived damaged)
* cables to connect laptops to displays
* USB memory sticks
* assorted connectors
* assorted batteries
* universal power transformers
* a small vacuum cleaner or carpet sweep (you can’t always depend on the exhibit hall crew to get to your booth on time)
* BE PREPARED !!! and Good luck !!!
Will you be getting your money’s worth from your exhibit program?
“Should we rent or buy our trade show exhibit?” is a common question we get from new customers, and the answer is based on how often you attend trade shows and how much flexibility you need from an exhibit. Renting a complete booth (not including custom graphics) usually costs about 30-50% of the cost of purchasing the same exhibit.
So, if you usually attend 3 or more trade shows per year, or if you prefer having the same basic configuration from year to year and anticipate using the exhibit for 3 or more years in a row, purchasing a custom booth can be a more cost-effective choice. It can also boost brand recognition in regular attendees from show to show and year to year. It is a bigger financial commitment on the front end, but lesser annual expenses and depreciation of a capital expense may offer balance.
If, however, flexibility is more important to you because your team attends only a single annual event, or you prefer to create a new design for every trade show or every year, renting may be more practical for your needs. Rentals are perfect for the company that wants to customize the size and complexity of their exhibit in response to market conditions, products showcased, or other variables. This option requires an annual planned expenditure, but no maintenance costs over time.
Rent vs. Buy FAQ
Why do you not include the cost of the custom graphics when balancing renting and purchasing? When discussing the benefits and costs of renting versus purchasing, we don’t include the custom graphics, as those often change from venue to venue even if you buy an exhibit, so those costs could stay the same for either solution.
What if our company is new, and we want to make a big splash this year but scale back next year? You may want to consider renting a larger, impactful exhibit this year, and then plan ahead to design a more modest booth to use again and again for the next few years.
Won’t having the same booth every year lose effectiveness? We can help you design and add custom graphics to the booth you purchase so that it makes a fresh impact each year.
Are there different ways to pay for an exhibit? We can help here too. One way is to lease an exhibit the same way you would a car. This would let you use the exhibit and while only paying a deposit once you take possession. The balance would be paid over a time period agreed by you with a leasing company. Government grants are another option where we can help, since we have two strong grant programs for your company called Export Quebec and CanExport. We can obtain up to 40% of eligible expenses for Quebec and 50% for Canada, which can cover eligible trade show expenses, hotel and travel expenses and in certain cases, monies even for web development and graphic design.
What about the costs of repairing, storing, insuring and shipping a purchased exhibit? You do have some additional expenses with a purchased exhibit. Contact BERLINdisplays today and we’ll be happy to walk you through those expenses and all the solutions we offer.
BERLINdisplays works hard to help you display your organization or products to the very best advantage. If you are considering whether to buy or rent your trade-show display or booth, please contact us today. We would be honoured to help you make the best decision for your company and your bottom line.
BERLINdisplays offers a safe and convenient storage solution for our custom and modular trade show exhibits and booths.
Storing your BERLINdisplays exhibit with us is a practical, affordable option. Our storage is safe and secure, and you never have to worry about the storage unit size, quality, or security. No more scheduling an employee to be present for shipping out and returning crates, no more searching for storage that is secure and temperature/moisture controlled. When you store your exhibit with the experts who designed and built your valuable marketing tool, you can have confidence it will be ready to dazzle your audience when you are.
Located in Montreal, our storage centre is safe, secure, and offers the added convenience of professional evaluation of crates and contents upon arrival back from your trade shows. Our central location means predictable, easy shipping all over the United States and Canada. This makes your shipping costs easy to calculate, and your exhibit easy to ship.
When you combine this professional storage solution with our set up, tear down, and shipping services, this makes for the simplest possible transitions for your tradeshow team. We take care of everything but your presentation and giveaways!
Imagine being able to leave every facet of your tradeshow exhibit transitioning from one show to the next to the professionals you trusted to design and built it. Just schedule the shows and arrive to find it ready for your final touches. Then, when your job is accomplished, rest easy knowing your exhibit will be properly packed, shipped, and stored until you’re ready to use it again.
Are you ready to put your focus back on the marketing campaign instead of managing exhibit storage? We display you at your very best, and we store your exhibit so it arrives at its very best. Contact BERLINdisplays today to begin planning your marketing success.