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How to Choose the Correct Trade Show Display?

You should choose a trade show display based on the trade show or event for which you will be using the display. The display that best presents the products, services, and company image desired, will attract future customers.

Pop Up Displays, Panel Systems, Panel System, Panel Trade Show Displays, Panel, Displays, Booths, Exhibits

You should choose a trade show display based on the trade show or event for which you will be using the display. The display that best presents the products, services, and company image desired, will attract future customers. Frankly, a display is designed to do assist in creating or maintaining brand awareness. For once an attendee has been lured to your display; your booth’s job is done. It is then up to you to throw down the hammer and commandeer that attendee as a future customer.

With only an ephemeral moment to seize the attention of a trade show attendee, your trade show display must make a plea to your target audience's needs. Your display has to effectively communicate who you are, what you do, and how your company can be of aid.

But, determining the correct display can be a daunting task. When purchasing a trade show display, you want to choose a professional based company with expertise and excellent customer service. If you consider the questions listed below you will have a much better idea of the direction for your display needs. Keep in mind; you will be limited by the size of your booth. Working under that premise, take a look at some options for that area.

1) What is the booth size?

2) What is the show budget?

3) How many individuals will be working the show?

4) What are the marketing and sales objectives?

5) How will the display be transported to the show?

6) Will graphics need to be created?

By answering these questions, you will narrow the search for a display booth. Once objectives and your trade show calendar for the year have been set, the next step is to choose a display. The display decision should be based on the specific show objectives, budgetary restrictions, as well as, corporate branding goals and guidelines. If for example you are a marketing director for a big company with an unlimited budget and want to position yourself as a leader in your industry, a large booth space and a custom or high end modular exhibit for enhanced appearance would best suit your needs. If, on the other hand, you are a startup or small company with a limited budget, a great choice would be to consider an inexpensive Pop Up Display. Most companies fall somewhere in-between these two extremes.

Pop Up Displays are the most popular option for spaces at sales events and conferences. There is a wide range of pop ups and most are available with podium wraps to convert your carrying case into a podium or small table. Further, Pop Ups can be complemented with shelving, peninsula counters, backlit headers, literature racks, and other accessories which can convert an ordinary Pop Up into unique marketing tool. Some of the key factors to look at in selecting a pop-up are durability, ease of setup, availability, fabric colors, and warranty. If you sometimes exhibit in smaller spaces, you could consider a convertible booth which can be easily converted to a smaller size. Each display booth uses a frame that can "pop up" allowing the display to be assembled in minutes. The frames are extremely durable and make it easier for individuals to set up and tear down. They are made of different components, some graphite, steel, and/or extruded aluminum. Manufacturers would argue their frame is the strongest, the lightest, or simply the best. Just remember each represents their particular calling card. You could equate it to the myriad of different HD televisions now available on the market. Though, when broken down to its bare essence, no one is any better than the next. The makeup from one frame to another is not overly important. Further, most of these displays have one thing in common… a lifetime warranty on the frame. Some offer a one year warranty on their display. The frame is the most important piece to your display. Every model, big or small, is a great portable trade show display choice for any trade show exhibitor. Today, marketers must achieve their goals with reduced budgets. Again, Pop Up Displays will assist you in stretching your budget because they are lighter weight and designed for easy set-up and tear-down. Further, you will save on storage, transportation, and labor costs.

Panel System Displays are an alternative to Pop Ups, and depending on their quality and countertop options, can provide a higher end look than a Pop Up Display. Panel displays generally hold more weight than Pop Ups, so they can work well if you have heavier products or a number of computer monitors to display. They are constructed of upper and lower panels that are assembled via heavy duty bolts. Panel systems give you an extreme amount of flexibility of design choices as displays can be custom created to your needs. Flexibility also abounds in color selection as upper and lower panels can be different. Most come with panels covered in fabric, be sure to select the color that best matches your companies logo, brand, products or overall image.

Modular Exhibits are high end exhibits that provide a custom look but can still be setup in a few hours, shipped in standard rotomolded plastic cases, and thus have a lower total cost of ownership than custom booths. Modular exhibits generally use higher end materials including tensile fabric structures, extruded aluminum frames, high end composites and laminates, and innovative bold designs. Modular exhibits will hold more weight and can also be used to hold large plasma screens and LCD panels.

Truss Systems provide a brash, modern, and unique look to a display. They are also excellent functional components that can be used to mount lighting, projectors, and Plasma or LCD panels. The fact that truss systems have a high weight bearing capacity makes them great for displaying heavier weight products like computers, machine parts, free weights, etc. They also have a unique dramatic look that works well with certain target markets. The beauty of Truss systems is the ability to be used in conjunction with other display structures like Pop Up and Panel System.

Custom Exhibits provide the ultimate in branding and high impact. As their name infers, they are custom built, ergo, designed to meet very specific show objectives and may include elements like conference areas, theater spaces, rotating towers, as well as, numerous product and service display positions. Given the higher cost of design, construction, shipping, installation and dismantling, these exhibits are best equipped for those willing to invest $25,000 or more for their trade show display. The payoff in a custom exhibit can be huge because it can set you apart from the competition and create an indelible branding image of your company as an industry leader.

With each of the above-fore-mentioned display types, designing attention-grabbing graphics for your booth is essential to setting yourself apart from your competitors. Below, you will find some important strategies to consider:

- The 10 foot rule. Make sure all logos and text can be clearly read from a distance of 10 feet ( i.e. Rule of thumb for text is 2” per 10’ of distance viewed)

- Limit bullet points to 10 words or less… Less is more.

- Infuse a bounty of visual images to illicit emotion and make your exhibit unforgettable

- Make your logo simple to view even from a long distance. You want to make sure that your target audience can find you at a glance. High visibility is a priority.

- Consider using mural graphic panels to increase the value and emotional impact of your display. Remember, “Perception is Reality!”

Remember, purchasing a trade show display allows you complete freedom of expression. Be cognizant that the exhibit design should revolve around your specific tradeshow needs. The Trade Show Display, Exhibit or Booth should project your company’s individuality, character, and panache. Over time purchasing a new tradeshow display may be your most economical long term solution to your trade show needs. Once you’ve answered the questions presented earlier and understood the dynamic differences between the many display options, you will be more informed and better suited to create your new display space.


How To Stand Out at Your Next Trade Show: Engage All The Senses

In the hyper competitive world of trade shows trying to stand out from the crowd can be quite challenging. It seems that everyone has a nice display, great graphics, brochures and the typical ball point pen or koozie with logo which makes it difficult to be different.

Graphics, Murals, Trade Show, Displays, Booths, Exhibits, Pop Up Displays, Panel Systems, Panel System, Panel Trade Show Displays

In the hyper competitive world of trade shows trying to stand out from the crowd can be quite challenging. It seems that everyone has a nice display, great graphics, brochures and the typical ball point pen or koozie with logo which makes it difficult to be different. Below are a few strategies that can be used to create that unique experience and leave lasting impressions.

At a typical trade show your eyes and ears are pretty much being taken care of, but what about the sense of smell, touch and taste? Here are a few strategies that can help engage all the other senses.

Smell - Smells can create quite an emotional response in most individuals. In fact, you probably have a fond memory attached to the smell of your grandmothers freshly baked cookies or the smell of wood in your fathers workshop. For example, every time I smell gasoline I think of working at my grandfathers gas station as a child in the summer. ScentAir, based in Charlotte, NC, offers scent delivery systems that are normally used in retail, medical and entertainment venues but can easily be adapted for the trade show floor. The company offers over 1000 scents and can even custom create a branded scent just for your company.

Touch - Touch is how we learn as children and is also a valuable learning tool as adults. Put products in clients hands, let them try them out. Try not to see what your sell as museum pieces that no one can use. A more subtle approach in engaging touch is through your feet. The only thing I hate about walking the show floor or working at a show is how my feet feel afterwards. By the end of the day I find myself looking for soft carpets to walk on so why not take advantage of this dilemma. The Comfort Channel offers quite a variety of foot massagers and many of them are quite portable. Invite prospects in for a nice foot massage while discussing how you might be able to help further their business. You can also help your prospect to remember you on the way home. For most trade show attendees the way to and from the show is via plane. Instead of the typical pen promotional item why not give away branded inflatable neck pillows. They are quite affordable and can be found at ePromos.

Taste - Taste can be quite a challenge as we most often taste things by eating. Some shows will enable you to give out food and others won't so make sure to refer to you exhibitor manual. You can purchase branded food items with you company name and or logo. Most commonly seen at shows is mints, but there are plenty of other options like candies, nuts, even wine. Another strategy with Taste is to send out food after the show. A great example of this would be to send a pizza to a hot prospect for lunch with a slice missing. In place of that slice would be a piece of paper saying that your companies solution is the missing piece of the puzzle.

In the end your goal at any show is to stand out, get noticed and walk away with as many potential leads and business opportunities as possible. The above solutions are only a part of the puzzle but one that is most often overlooked.


How to Get the Best Out of Trade Show Services

Your trade show exhibit builder has the expertise to help you make your event a success. But it can often be any one of the following pesky details relating to trade show services, which, if overlooked, can undermine an otherwise well-planned trade show experience. Here are ten key recommendations from “Tips & Techniques for Exhibiting Success” by Nomadic Display:

trade show, trade show exhibit, trade show display, custom modular exhibits, trade show booth

You’ve heard the expression, “the devil’s in the details”. This is especially applicable to trade show exhibiting where success hinges on all the big and little things that constitute a trade show appearance.
The process starts with the obvious: selecting the right trade shows to attend; designing a high quality exhibit booth to properly portray your company; and arranging to get the trade show display to the exhibit floor on time.

Your trade show exhibit builder has the expertise to help you make your event a success. But it can often be any one of the following pesky details relating to trade show services, which, if overlooked, can undermine an otherwise well-planned trade show experience.

Here are ten key recommendations from “Tips & Techniques for Exhibiting Success” by Nomadic Display:

1. Study the exhibitor service manual. The manual is the key to what you need to know about each trade show. As every show has its own set of rules, regulations and deadlines, carefully examine the manual’s information. Read the fine print in exhibitor instructions, delivery information and trade show services contracts. Complete the required registration and services order forms accurately and retain copies for future reference.

2. Make a list of all the trade show services you need. If you plan for your display requirements and order well in advance, you will avoid those costly last minute services that can play havoc with your trade show budget. Make decisions about the extra utilities you need, as well as carpeting, furniture, cleaning and security.

3. Understand the trade show floor plan. Analyze the exhibit hall floor plan and your booth location in respect to traffic flow and proximity to food courts, service entrances and sound system equipment. Examine plan specifications, however small, indicating ceiling heights, pillar locations, even heating and air conditioning ducting.

4. Identify utility sources. Contact the exhibit builder to determine how much electrical power you will need for your display. Always make provisions for backup utilities to guarantee that your power-driven components will function dependably. Check the trade show floor plan to find out where the utility ports are located with relation to your space.

5. Understand drayage. Drayage involves delivering your display materials from the loading dock to their assigned space, removing empty crates, returning the crates at the end of the show and transporting the re-crated materials back to the dock. Save money by consolidating all equipment and containers as part of one single shipment.

6. Arrange for adequate carpeting. Install your utilities first before laying the carpet to reduce the number of carpet cuts for electrical outlets. Remember to order enough carpet to cover the bare concrete strip between the display and the aisle. Order a decent quality carpet and underlayment. Your trade show booth staff’s feet will appreciate it at the end of the day.

7. Allow extra time for customs if your company is shipping an exhibit overseas. You need the correct documentation for your container contents, which may be opened and inspected at a port of entry. Use a reliable custom house broker or freight forwarder to coordinate arrangements and keep you posted as to the progress of your shipment.

8. Get to know your trade show services representatives. These are the folks employed by the exhibition organization who are paid to be helpful contacts for exhibitors. They can be of great value to you by fielding your questions and finding ready solutions to any problems you encounter at the trade show.

9. Know how best to work with union labor. As union rules differ in each city, be sure to read the showplace manual to learn what union rules, regulations and charges apply. If you have questions, contact the trade show management or the service contractor. Consider engaging your trade show exhibit display house to provide installation supervision in order to arrange for a problem-free setup.

10. Bring all important trade show related files, contracts and paperwork to the trade show. This includes copies of trade show floor plans, exhibit installation service orders, tracking documents for all shipments, contact names, phone, fax and email numbers.

Remember that attention to the myriad details of trade show planning and execution can make or break your trade show appearance. It is important that you are familiar with the trade show rules. Call upon the expertise of your exhibit builder and show services representatives to help you have a successful and seamless trade show experience.

Dick Wheeler is President of Professional Exhibits & Graphics, headquartered in Sunnyvale, California. The firm is a full-service premiere trade show exhibit, graphics and management services company. For addtional information, go to
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