Writing an RFP for A Trade Show Booth? Here’s What It Should Have

Looking forward to getting a trade show booth designed? There are two ways to go about it: you can either provide the designer or the exhibition stand builder with half-baked information and wait for them to mess up, leaving you with no choice but to go back to square one, or you could furnish enough information at once, maximizing the chances of getting the perfect design delivered the very first time. Which one would you choose?

RFP Essentials for a Trade Show Booth Design

 

Company Profile

You could start with a general overview of your company, but do disclose your achievements and more importantly, how you fit into the industry landscape. If you have an edge over the competition, now is the time to put it on paper. Here is what else could be a part of the profile you share with the trade show booth designer:

– Your style guide, if any, the one that you follow for getting your logo, tagline etc. printed on your marketing collaterals

– Your annual report, but only if you are comfortable sharing it and believe that it could lead to a much better design

            – Get them to sign a non-disclosure agreement if the need be

– Do explain your products and services; a detailed description of your company’s offerings and the demographics you cater to would help the designer in visualizing what may or may not work for you.

 

New or Upcoming Products

Have you recently launched a new product, or want to launch one at the show you are about to participate in? Either way, do let the builder know. If some products are still in the pipeline but likely to be introduced later in the year, you could use the show as the perfect platform for making an announcement. Then again, make sure that the designer is in the loop.

Objectives of Participation

You know that you are participating in a show to generate more leads or to find a possible solution to the challenge of reaching out to a wider audience, but the question is: does your exhibition booth designer know? Tell them what you are after, i.e. what is it that you expect out of the show and of course the design. You may also want to make a mention of how you plan to achieve your objectives. Would you be hosting a live speaker? Would you be conducting product demonstrations to keep the attendees engaged? Anything and everything that could have a bearing on your trade show booth design should be communicated.

Budgetary Constraints

You may have set aside some money for trade shows and exhibitions, but only you know how much of it can be spent on your booth, given that exhibition marketing warrants additional expenses as well. Set the record straight. Let them know what kind of a budget they’ll be looking at. This would help in setting realistic expectations.

In addition, you may also want to talk about the past, present & future trade shows, and yes, do include a stipulated deadline so that they don’t take ages to get back to you. The idea is to strike a balance and follow the “not too much, never too little” approach.

The Top 3 Next Big Things in Trade Show Technology

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” –  Arthur C. Clarke

Isn’t that what we need, to stand out from the crowd and cut through the noise, at any trade show? Magic! Well, technology is magic, and quite an indispensable one, more so because it can: a) improve the overall experience and b) give you an edge over the competition.

Trade Show Technology Trends to Look Out For

 

1. Facial Recognition: It’s becoming popular and how. Techies are already coming up with algorithms that calculate facial features, hairstyles, and even body shapes. Won’t be long before it takes over.

 

  • Facebook already uses facial recognition to suggest who you could possibly tag

 

  • You can use it to reach out to a much wider audience than now. If the attendees tag their friends and family, your posts would go viral, and before you know, they’ll be all over the place. Win-win!

 

  • Use the technology to your advantage by:

 

-Giving your staff and the attendees enough reasons to post to Facebook

-Adding some official photos, and encouraging the attendees to tag themselves.

 

2. Artificial Intelligence: In this era of experience economy, what the attendees look for is a highly personalized experience, and like it or not but unless you provide them with one irrespective of the number of attendees you are to cater to, they’d be happy to make a detour and head to another booth or show in no time.

  • An “Artificial Conversational Entity” or a Chatbot could come in handy. It can answer the questions that the attendees tend to ask, while your staff takes on other responsibilities. Consider it an extension of your customer service arm if you may, but your staff could really use a helping hand at the trade show booth.

 

  • AI could also be used to interpret data from the social media profiles of the attendees. The interpretation can then pave way for well-informed recommendations. What all conferences should they attend, which all products are worth checking out, and the like.

 

3. Live Streaming: Not really new, but its here to stay. It could help you augment your brand image and reach out to those who decide to give your show a miss for whatsoever reason.

It’s all about expanding your horizons. Just because someone didn’t turn up, doesn’t mean they can’t be a part of the show. Help them be. Give them a reason to. Encourage your attendees to share your live stream with those who may not be physically present at the show but are pretty much interested in knowing what’s going on.

Come up with a show hashtag. If and when the attendees decide to broadcast their personal experiences online and engage in what is being called “crowd streaming”, see if they are willing to use the hashtag, because if they agree, you’ll find it rather easy to measure the results.

 

Right from RFID that may soon be used to make sponsorship experiences much better to trade show apps, social media walls, automation systems, and what not; there are quite a few technologies that are worth giving a shot. Take your pick!

Managing Trade Show Logistics, Freight, Shipping & Material Handling

Logistics and shipping can make or break a trade show. If the exhibit assets do not arrive at the show venue well in time, it will send everyone into panic mode. Not to mention, the lack of careful planning and attention to detail could result in potentially expensive mistakes, while shipping valuable assets to and from a show. Here’s how you can take control:

Make The Right Decisions

Do you have a portable trade show display, or is it a custom one? Where is it that you are exhibiting, at a regional trade show or somewhere international? The answers to these questions will help you in determining if you need to hire a trade show freight carrier in the first place. In case of a portable display, especially the one that you are to use at a regional trade show, you may be able to save on the transportation costs. Being lightweight, this display can be packed in convenient carry bags and cases and taken along.

On the other hand, custom or custom modular exhibits have quite a few delicate components that warrant expert handling. These must be shipped in large crates so as to ensure their safe and timely transfer, and are better left to professionals, who can handle them carefully.

Pick The Right People

Create a checklist of sorts before you zero in on a trade show freight carrier. Here’s what you should focus on:

  • What are the show dates?
  • Are there specific move-in and move-out times?
  • Do you want the exhibit assets to be shipped to directly to the show or would you rather have them shipped to an advanced warehouse?

 

Don’t Undermine Material Handling

Getting the exhibit assets shipped to the show is not enough. One the assets or components are there, you’ll need someone to transport the crates from the loading area to your booth space in the exhibition hall. And that’s exactly what a drayage or material handling contractor does. More often than not, their work also involves removing the crates and boxes post the show and loading them on the truck. Of course, whether you want the boxes to be delivered to a storage facility or to the next show is totally up to you.

Err On The Side Of Caution

Right from choosing the freight carrier to getting the exhibit assets shipped, it is important that you keep tabs on what is happening. For instance, you have to be aware of the inbound delivery deadline to be able to determine if the freight carrier has missed one, because if they do, chances are that their truck will be sent to the back of the line to unload, and that’s not what you want, right? Similarly, unless you have a camera on you, it would be difficult for you to document the damage to your exhibit assets caused by mishandling.

Managing trade show logistics, freight, shipping & material handling is not as difficult as it seems, and with the help of an experienced freight carrier and a considerate drayage contractor, it is very much possible to ensure that your exhibit assets arrive undamaged.

Reasons to Participate In or Pay a Visit to BIOFACH 2018

BIOFACH, the world’s leading trade show for Organic Food, needs no introduction. Those with a passionate interest in organic food don’t miss it for the world, and those who are a part of the sector in some way or the other, well, they are always on the lookout for new contacts and know this is where they’ll find them. Many also have an avid interest in the latest developments and this show is where they get to keep tabs, with ease. Reasons galore. Here’s why you should be at BIOFACH 2018, if not as an exhibitor, then definitely as a visitor:

Reasons to Participate in BIOFACH 2018 Trade Show

  1. You get to meet them all: Your customers, suppliers and more importantly, the potential customers, will all be here. Biggies like APEDA would be here. There’s no reason why you shouldn’t be. Call it a get-together if you may, but if you could benefit from meeting the organic stakeholders, BIOFACH is where you should head to.

 

  1. You get to implement your marketing strategies: What is it that you are looking for? Positioning your brand? How about some image building? BIOFACH not only gives you the opportunity to present your products, but also gives you exposure to a powerful PR platform, one that’s backed by close to 1,000 media representatives from 39 countries and extensive media reporting. It’s a win-win!

 

  1. You could learn a thing or two: The BIOFACH Congress will offer extensive information about the organic sector, and whether you are a new market player or someone who’s been there for quite some time, you could very well use whatever you learn here.

 

  1. You could do your bit: Did you know that just like every year, BIOFACH 2018 will also the witness the coming together of representatives from politics, associations and NGOs? Here it’s worth mentioning that several other opinion formers and figures of public interest are also expected to be here. But why would they be here? To discuss the matters that can have a bearing on the future of the organic sector. You ought to be here!

 

Reasons to Visit

  1. You get to meet like-minded people: Whether you are a lateral thinker, a businesswoman, an activist or just about anyone with interest in organic food products, you’ll meet many people out here who share your passion. The best part is that you’ll also get exposure to local and international players and labels.

 

  1. You get useful insights: The congress parallel to BIOFACH could be the perfect platform for you to not only keep abreast of the latest trends but also find out what the experts think of these trends. You get to hear their opinions and garner exclusive insights into the developments taking place in the organic sector. Just so you know, there will be a series of round tables, presentations and open panel discussions with top-class speakers that you could look forward to.

 

To cut the long story short, BIOFACH 2018 has to be on your go-to list, irrespective of whether you have some organic food products to offer or are just a trade visitor interested in knowing what would shape the future of the organic sector.

How to Cut Through the Noise in Experience Economy with Trade Shows

Experience Economy” is the in-thing these days; exhibitors all around the world seem to be talking about it, not many of whom have the slightest idea of what it means, to begin with, and those who do, well, they often fail to make the most of it.

Let’s start with what the experience economy is and more importantly, what makes it the need of the hour?

The Introduction

If you have shifted your focus from the goods and services you sell, and are now engaged in delivering experiences that the customers can relish and be a part of, voila, you already know what experience economy is, but if you haven’t, here’s what you need to do – sell your goods and services, of course, that’s what you are out there for, but do it with a different approach – try and emphasize the effect(s) your offerings can have on people’s lives. Once you do that, there’s no stopping you!

Trade Show and the Experience Economy

What is that you aim to achieve through your company’s participation in exhibitions, events and trade shows? Reaching out to the customers? Hosting a conference or organizing a roadshow isn’t going to get you there anymore. You have to look for new, engaging ways. Simply put, unless the customers or the attendees are the core of everything you do, you won’t succeed, not in today’s modern, multi-sensory world!

Ways to Succeed In the Experience Economy with Trade Shows

  • Cash in on shareability: Given the fact that your customers are already using the social media to capture their lives’ moments and share with hundreds and thousands of followers, it shouldn’t be a problem for you to deliver shareable experiences. The icing on the cake is that even those who are not physically present at your events can now be a part, right from the comfort of their home(s), if and when you give the attendees enough reasons to share their experiences online.

 

  • Let them dive in: The attendees are looking for multi-sensory experiences, the ones that they can be a part of and/or relate to. Give them what they look for. Use virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) to your advantage, but make sure you deliver immersive experiences if you are looking for genuine emotions or responses. The idea is to grab their attention, and if you can virtually teleport them from one part of the world to another, they’ll be all ears (and eyes), and pay attention to whatever it is that you have to say.

 

  • Appeal to all five senses: There are only two ways to go about any Trade Show – you either stand out from the competition or you don’t. The difference lies in whether or not you know how to incorporate sensory activities into your Trade Show. Choose the right kind of music, be careful while zeroing in on the light activations and offer unforgettable culinary experiences and you are good to go. And of course, if there are some interactive activities that the attendees can be a part of, there’s nothing like it.

 

Here’s the thing: the attention spans are way shorter now, and also those who attend your Trade Shows expect a lot more than they used to. It’s high time you adapt to the change and offer immersive, multi-sensory, and disruptive experiences. Do it now, before the competition decides to make the most of the experience economy, leaving you with little to no choice.