Rookie Custom Exhibit Display Mistakes to Avoid

August 24th, 2018

Building a custom exhibit display for the first time can be both exciting and intimidating. With the opportunity to create a trade show display customized entirely for your business also comes the responsibility to create a look and a message that will work for your business for at least the next several years. So how do you ensure an effective and beautiful display? The first step is to avoid a few rookie mistakes. Rooted mostly in lack of planning and over enthusiasm, these errors are easy to make, but are also entirely avoidable once you are aware of them. Here are a few of the most common first-time custom exhibit display mistakes to avoid.

SpineSmith Partners Exhibit

Mistake 1: Lack of Defined Goals for the Custom Exhibit Display

When clients first begin the process of designing and building a custom exhibit display with Imagecraft, we have them come in for a meeting to flesh out their vision and goals for the display. The purpose of this meeting is to get a clear idea of their display needs, hopes, and goals so that we can design a look that is tailored to the exhibit experience they require. Failing to go into the design process with a specific vision is one of the most basic mistakes an exhibitor can make when buying a custom exhibit. Your company’s specific goals will define the look your display takes on. It will help to pinpoint features that are necessary for your booth and eliminate features that will not work for your company. Without goals, you risk building a booth that is confusing for attendees to look at and ineffective at meeting your trade show goals. Instead, consider hiring an exhibit company, like Imagecraft, that will help you define your vision and goals for your booth. With specific goals and a clear message in mind, you can craft a look that is compelling, focused, and effective for your business.


Mistake 2: Lack of Clear Branding on the Custom Exhibit Display

Hopefully, you know how your business differs from your competition, and why those differences are important to your target audiences. Those unique brand values are the foundation upon which you will build all of your marketing efforts, including your custom exhibit display. That is why it can be a serious mistake to build a custom exhibit that lacks clear branding. For example, a booth that includes non-brand colors, non-brand messaging (or multiple messages), or that is not focused on the specific products and services you offer is going to confuse attendees. They will wonder who you are, what you are offering, and how you can make a difference for them. And because they have hundreds of booths from which to choose on the trade show floor, chances are they will not be stopping by yours to ask. Instead, just as you must define clear goals for your custom exhibit display, so you must create clear branding for your booth. Your exhibit company can help by deploying its design services to craft a look that embodies your brand values and the specific messaging that will appeal to the target audiences you need to reach at the trade show. What you need to do is to articulate your unique brand values and the messaging that is most important for the trade show in order to ensure that it is properly incorporated into a compelling design.


Mistake 3: Failing to Create a Comprehensive Trade Show Budget

Custom exhibit displays may be the largest output of money for attendance at a trade show, but they are not the only trade show related expenses you will have. When businesses put all of their trade show budget into building the display, they often run into problems affording the other, unforeseen aspects of attending a trade show. Instead, before committing a certain amount of money to a custom exhibit display, spend time building a comprehensive budget. Consider expenses such as shipping your display to and from the exhibit hall, paying drayage charges to get it to its exhibit space, paying for installation and dismantling, storage fees, meals and transportation for your staff, the cost of giveaways and other promotional events, and exhibit space costs such as renting the space and paying for show services such as electrical and wireless access. Once you know how much you need to spend in these areas, you can create a more realistic budget for your custom display. And do not fear, an experienced exhibit company like Imagecraft can work with even tight budgets to craft a compelling and customized look.


Mistake 4: Creating a Custom Exhibit Display that Does Too Much

Finally, in the excitement of finally having a custom exhibit display of their own, some businesses go a little overboard with their design. Graphics may be busy; messages may be long or numerous; they may try to incorporate every available piece of technology into their booth. And while the almost endless options available for custom exhibits can be exhilarating, adopting them all only creates a confusing look that is more likely to turn away attendees than to welcome them in. Instead, businesses will do better to embrace simplicity in their custom exhibit display. Part of the ability to do this comes from having clear goals and clear brand values in mind. Then, you can select features and technology and graphics that meet those specific goals and brand values. With clear goals to guide you, and an exhibit company to help, you can find the elements that will work best for your specific display. And then you can boast a trade show exhibit that is simple, clear, and compelling, the perfect combination for earning trade show success. Building your first custom exhibit display is going to be a memorable experience, and hopefully a profitable one as you deploy it at your exhibiting events. By avoiding rookie mistakes like lacking clear goals, lacking clear branding, lacking a comprehensive budget, and creating an over complicated design, you can enjoy a look that earns you the attention your business deserves on the trade show floor. Don’t forget to take advantage of the guidance and expertise available from your exhibit company: They can help you transform your vision and brand into a stunning addition to the exhibit hall.