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Steal the Show: 3 Tips for Maximizing Your Trade Show Exhibit

3 Tips for Maximizing Your Trade Show Exhibit

Trade shows are an excellent investment for increasing brand awareness and generating leads for your business. Even if you’re not on the main stage, it doesn’t mean you can’t be the one to steal the show. In order to grab the attention of passing attendees, your booth should be eye-catching, entertaining, and informative. Follow these tips to maximize the ROI of your next show.

Make Your Trade Show Exhibit Pop

Trade shows are attended by thousands of people, each interacting with dozens of different exhibitors all competing to be the one they’ll remember. How do you push your brand to the front of their memory during information overload? Create an environment that makes an unforgettable impression attendees will be talking about even after the show. Sounds easy enough, right? Make sure you’re hitting the basics!


Your trade show booth should have visuals that are meant to attract, not distract. Using quality, eye-catching graphics and accents are well worth the investment to draw people in. This is not an area of your budget you want to neglect; if attendees aren’t attracted to your booth you won’t get the opportunity to communicate your message and create that memorable experience. Your exhibit should be constructed with high quality details to set your company apart from the rest. Compare these two displays: one constructed quickly from hard plastic and graphics taken straight out of a basic publishing software; vs another display constructed with metallic alloys and graphics professionally designed for the exhibitors brand. A company that takes the time to invest in the attendee experience with their company will be the one that has people filing into their exhibit.


Your large-format displays should immediately grab the attention of everyone in proximity and tell them exactly who you are. The size and amount of information on your displays should vary depending on the distance between you and your visitor. The well known companies can often use just their logo to draw in a crowd, while smaller emerging companies should also highlight their slogan to resonate with their relevant audience from afar. On the approach, visitors should be able to recognize smaller displays with a bit more information about your company’s products, mission and value proposition. We want to keep the exhibit staff’s focus on generating qualified leads, so simplifying your messaging and value proposition will make it easier to identify the attendees with strong needs for your products and services. Keep your content catchy and stick to an overall theme. For example, you can create a single tagline for your campaign at the trade show that’s clever and relevant for easy recognition with attendees.


Remember, you are not the only exhibitor in the room. According to this Small Business Trends, you want clean and concise delivery of your high level message for easy comprehension. If your displays have too much information, it requires more time for an attendee to read and can lead to disengagement. Also, every visitor may have a different goal in mind when inquiring about your company. Don’t make the assumption that everybody wants highly technical details, research the audience at the event to see who’s in attendance and identify what information your target audience wants to see. Make sure your language is easy to understand so the average person on the street can understand it, the quickest way to lose a lead is confusing them with information that’s over their head.

Spotlight Your Visitors in a Fun Way


After attendees leave your exhibit, they should feel that they received a great experience and a wealth of knowledge about the benefits you can bring to their company. In our online world, we have the opportunity to continue engagement with attendees even after they leave through the various social media channels.Business.com shares that the marketing collateral you’re giving out should include social media links that connect them with a whole new channel full of content that will further benefit and connect the attendee with your brand.


Provide real-time photos of the trade show on your social media pages to inform your current followers that you’re here and attract new interest from attendees exploring the event. This enhances your recognition with attendees and helps builds industry awareness for your brand. Pictures should be more than just smiling, posed photos. You want to emphasize action shots showing the trending activity and interest in your booth.


Consider interactive games or demos that can be incorporated into your exhibit to build a memorable experience with your brand. For example, a photo booth would create a fun way for attendees to interact with your booth and increase your online engagement by sharing their photos with them through social media.

Offer Free Gifts and Information


Who doesn’t like free? Trade shows are well known for the frenzy of promos and swag being pushed on the floor. Once your visitors are drawn in and having fun, your window to share information about your company with them will never be bigger. Utilize this opportunity to offer branded giveaways, prizes, or heavy discounts for engaging at the event. Perhaps one of those free gifts could include a tote bag with your company’s logo on it because attendees are always walking around the exhibit with more stuff than they can carry. This is the time for your staff to really sell your brand and prime attendees for a follow-up discussion with your sales team after the event.


The branded brochures and information cards that you distribute should be easy to find in your booth and recognize when attendees clean out their bags after the event. When looking around your exhibit, informative literature should centrally located, combined with the display that acts as the main draw in your exhibit. Most people want to take advantages of the free gifts, but we don’t want them to leave behind the important information! Keep information pieces simple, do not overload literature with heavy paragraphs that are draining to read. It should communicate your main point through a visually appealing design that’s easy to absorb. The marketing materials are meant to remind them of the experience they had interacting with your exhibit or speaking with your exhibitors to increase their chances of checking out your offering after the event.

You’ve spent a lot of time and effort preparing for this trade show - make sure your investment has a significant return to keep the praises coming to your marketing department and the funds flowing to your events budget. By following these tips, your branded experience will not only live on in the memories of attendees but through the relationships you develop in business after the event.

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Jason Trovela is a Market Research Analyst at Scanalytics Inc., an Internet of Things company that analyzes consumer behavior insights through smart floor sensors. The analytics platform helps businesses drive more foot traffic and increase the ROI of their locations by measuring how many people enter a space, what routes and patterns they take, and how long they engage with a product or display. Jason works with the marketing and product teams at Scanalytics researching new opportunities to enhance the technology and identify new market applications.