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November 14, 2017

Is Your Trade Show Booth a Dinosaur?

Heather Bundgaard, Account Executive

When I was little, I enjoyed watching the classic superhero movies featuring Lou Ferrigno as the Hulk©, Linda Carter as Wonder Woman©, and Christopher Reeve as Superman©. Now-a-days, those superheroes are Mark Ruffalo, Gal Gadot, and Henry Cavill. The characters are the same, but the actors have been replaced for newer versions.

In relation to trade show displays, owning a pop-up with carpet panels and velcro graphics was the craze many moons ago. If you showed up to a trade show with that display today, your company would look unprofessional and outdated.

The question you may be asking is — how often should I update my trade show booth?

The quick answer is about the same amount of time that you upgrade your smartphone.

However, everyone is different. Some want cutting-edge technology and are the first in line when Apple® rolls out a new iPhone®. Then there are those who wait about three years, and others who wait until the phone is completely discontinued and they are forced to buy something new.

I see companies in the same buying cycles as above. Some are quick to upgrade their booth, while others look like dinosaurs on the show floor.

Since I’m in sales, it’s hard to suggest an upgrade without sounding like I’m trying to sell something. In reality, I’m a consultant and it’s my job to look after my clients' best interests and give them a gentle wake-up call before they’re completely outdated.

Okay I’m going to be candid here, so stop reading if you prefer to stay living in your Jurassic World. Remember marketing directors, I walked in your shoes before. I get it. Trade shows are expensive, no matter how much you try to save, and buying something new is tough to budget.

Your product is the best in the industry, and you can rattle off a list of why your product is better than your competitors. But, you won’t get the chance to tell anyone those benefits if no one stops at your booth. Attendees are walking the show floor looking at booths with the newest trends in graphics, structure, and games.

As a marketing department, the last thing you need is to spend money going to a trade show if you aren’t going to put your best foot forward and compete on the show floor.  So, how do you evolve in the most budget-friendly manner? 

  1. Upgrade your booth with high-quality equipment that can be reconfigured. This type of booth has longevity, and you can re-design your booth utilizing the same hardware every two-to-four years, with the only outlying cost being new graphics.
  2. Partner with a reputable exhibit house who offers benefits, such as in-house design, taking on show floor responsibility, assisting with pre, during, and post-show marketing, show service assistance, and worldwide capabilities. 

The bottom line is you must evolve to grow your business, and you aren’t going to get new business on the show floor unless you stand out. Take an honest look at your last trade show booth as well as your competitors. If you feel it’s time for a refreshed look contact us and we’ll help you get started! 

Heather Bundgaard, Senior Exhibit Consultant
htb@ttskyline.com | 630.376.1538
Heather’s marketing career started more than 22 years ago with a focus on trade show planning and execution. Her current role as a senior exhibit consultant allows Heather to work with various companies and industries on their trade show needs from design to implementation and asset management. Heather strives to provide the best customer experience, relieve her clients of stress, and prevent wasted time and money.

About TradeTec:

Founded in Chicago in 1999, Skyline TradeTec produces innovative trade show exhibits with unmatched customer service and a promise of NO POST SHOW BILLING™ for clients. As an endorsed provider of Skyline products, TradeTec offers the highest quality modular exhibits and portable displays, as well as custom and hybrid solutions. Skyline TradeTec has 6 locations in 5 states, has served over 6,000 clients, and has completed over 50,000 projects worldwide. Learn more about TradeTec at SkylineTradeTec.com.