Looking for inspiration for your trade show display? We’ve got 25 killer trade show ideas to help you create a must-see trade show display. Below, you’ll find expert advice from professionals with experience in trade show design, followed immediately by our own tips. Here’s to a wonderful showing!
Many of the ideas below are very innovative and advanced! First, you may want to have the basics in place, like having a well designed sign or banner for your trade show booth. We recommend using 99designs for creating signs or display designs. You can schedule a free consultation with them by clicking here and selecting “Signage” as the category.
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Our Top 25 Trade Show Display Ideas
in combining social media with live trade show displays. At a show in Las Vegas, we hired a Showgirl to take pictures with attendees in front of our logo. We then tagged the attendee on the picture and posted to Facebook, making it seen by all of that attendee’s Facebook friends. Multiply that times hundreds of pictures and you get tens of thousands of people seeing your logo and the social endorsement of their friends.
-E. Brian Rose, Founder, JVZoo.com
2) We present at trade shows,
and my top idea is to host a photobooth! People love taking photos, and a photobooth is a fun way to break the ice and network in a more casual way. The photos are also great for a business’ social media presence, as it adds a lighthearted, human element.
-Leeyen Rogers, VP of Marketing, Jotform
for our fitness/dance industry. We have had a ton of success with interactive displays…meaning we allow those visiting the show to participate in a mini 2-5 minute demonstration – displaying the purpose of our classes, the benefits to their body, and the proper physical techniques.
-Sarah Jacoby, Founder, Studio 9
in various genres during my career and a few of the things that are always on my checklist when attending an event are:
- Recognize that not everyone that attends the event is knowingly seeking out your product.* Give them a reason to come to the table such as a FREE draw for a prize that is appealing (stay and play package/concert tickets etc.)
Note: The draw is as much about on site engagement as it is tracking the effectiveness of your reach at the event when reporting to administration later. Did you reach the numbers/demographic you were hoping? Is there value in attending this event again?
- Don’t put a table between yourself and the customer.* It is very easy to become complacent during the lulls at trade shows and find yourself absorbed in checking e-mails etc. behind the table and not engaging people at all. Set your table up in a manner that invites people to come INTO your booth and engage them.
- If the event may attract families, include an activity for kids IN your booth.* Whether something like a bean bag toss, or small fishing pond, find an activity that engages the youngsters for a few minutes requiring little supervision so you have an opportunity to catch their parents and pitch them while they can’t escape.
- Don’t Always Be Closing. * Engage the attendees at the trade show and try to engage with them in a genuine way. What are they looking for at the trade show? What have they enjoyed most? People generally like to TELL their story, even if it might not result in a sale, it can also give you a better sense of who is attending these events and what they are looking for to help you be more effective at future events. Aggressive or tunnel-visioned sales people will urge patrons to avert their eyes and just pass right by.
-Vern May, Economic Development Officer, Minnedosa & Area Community Development Corporation
5) Below are some tips from Frozen Beverage Dispensers (FBD) for a successful trade show booth display:
- We designed a u-shaped booth to create an inviting experience and optimization of space. The inside of the U hosts the working machines, and behind the U are two meeting areas to maximize business opportunities.
- The u-shape within the booth has two doors on each side and space within the U to allow for storage, and also highlight the behind-the-scenes workings of the machines with a clear back panel. Below this clear panel is a global map with all of FBD’s locations. We chose this location for the global map as it is one of the selling points for the meetings that will occur.
- We tell the FBD brand story through imagery, text and real working units that provide sampling opportunities as well as the chance to see how these machines are made and the ease of operation.
- We also used the circular hanging lamp as another branding opportunity. This lamps allows the visitor to identify FBD’s location from any area of the convention center.
-Natalia Prieto, Creative Civilization
has attended several trade shows now with what could be considered the freshest display ever.
Our display is in a category of it’s own and does wonders for us when it comes to attracting the crowds!
-Chris Michael, Director of Growth & Happiness, Bright Agrotech
In this quick but informative video, Megan Auman explains how to create an engaging booth design.
Looking for wall panels for your trade show? Check out how the GOGO panels easily click together to form a hardy and useful display wall.
Here’s a great walk-through on conceptualizing your booth and how to set it up.
10) Illuminate your booth with lights.
You can use a budget-friendly option like outdoor globe lights. This option creates a cozy, inviting atmosphere.
Duke’s Smoked Meats – Image courtesy of Proctor Productions
11) Use an iPad
to collect names and emails for your email newsletter. Here is an example of a Griffin Kiosk Floorstand Mount for iPad 2/3 for less than $200. You can also order a kiosk from Maclocks.
Image courtesy of Maclocks
12) Use a dark or black backdrop to make your display pop.
Image courtesy of Wild Ink Press
13) Add accent lighting to bring attention to specific merchandise.
Touchstone Glass – Image courtesy of Pegasus Lighting
14) Make a prominent display of your logo and branding.
Image courtesy of Jerry Central
15) Get creative with your backdrop.
Sew together old book pages for a one-of-a-kind background.
Image courtesy of Vintage Showoff
16) Instead of folding up, display clothing or appealing in unique ways.
Image courtesy of Charlotte Hupfield Ceramics
17) Create even more display space by adding an interior wall.
Image courtesy of Fine Water Colors
18) Go whimsical with your display, especially for those targeting a younger demographic.
Image courtesy of Atlanta Props
19) Provide water bottles as easy but thoughtful giveaways.
Make sure that you attach a keepsake card or coupon for booth visitors to keep after they’ve discarded the bottle.
Chicago Bridal Show – Image courtesy of Joy Lyn Photography
20) Set up a computer with a slide show to showcase your products.
CSU-Pueblo 2014 Bridal Show – Image courtesy of Malissa Ahlin Blog
21) Stay budget-conscious.
This trade show display uses something as ordinary as pallets in a beautiful and unexpected way. It adds personality and dimension to the display.
Almondleaf Studios – Image Courtesy of Your Marketing BFF
22) Is your product highly visual (think photography, interior design, cosmetics)? Go big and bold with your imagery to entice passersby.
Willow Lane Photography – Image Courtesy of Your Marketing BFF
23) Provide a relaxing place for your booth visitors to sit while they wait.
Whether you anticipate a lot of waiting visitors, or you’d like a comfortable place for you both to interact, if you have the space, maximize it.
Renee Sprink Photography – Image Courtesy of Your Marketing BFF
25) Add a floor to your trade show booth area.
Image Courtesy of Rowell Photo
Now It’s Your Turn: What Are Your Trade Show Display Ideas?
Do you have a trade show display idea to share with us? Let us know in the comments below!
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