While there are many areas of your trade show exhibit that might benefit from the attention-grabbing, mood-setting properties of lights, your product displays are probably one of the primary areas you want visitors to see when they come to your booth. After all, most attendees visit a trade show hoping to see new products, and cultivating new leads is usually a main goal for businesses. As a result, using lighting to make products visible and appealing can be a wise choice. Here are a few tips for using illumination to create product displays that are appealing and effective for your trade show display.
Reserve the use of your accent lighting for your trade show exhibit’s product displays.
Accent lighting consists of lighting solutions that highlight a particular area or item. For example, spotlights direct focused beams of light on a small area, in order to draw attention to a speaker for an event, a kiosk where people can learn more about the business, or a display case, where products are being illuminated so visitors can examine them.
Accent lighting is an excellent choice for a trade show exhibit because it makes it simple to draw attention to the most important areas of the booth. However, the overuse of this type of lighting can diminish its effectiveness and even make it confusing for attendees to decide what to focus their attention on.
As a result, if you want to highlight your product displays, you may want to consider reserving the use of accent lighting for those displays. For example, only use LED track lights to show off certain items and not to invite attendees to register their names at your kiosk. Reserve spotlighting for your large, centerpiece product instead of also using it to illuminate your lounge area. By doing so, you will naturally encourage attendees’ eyes to fall on your products, where they can be wowed and educated about your company’s latest offerings.
Consider illuminating individual items within your trade show exhibit’s product displays.
If you have several items to show off within your product display (i.e. Jewelry, phones, various models of an item, etc.), you may want to consider giving each product its due with individual lighting. Providing each item with its own mini-spotlight can create a beautiful, and eye-catching, feature within your trade show exhibit. At the same time, this strategy allows visitors to focus on the individual qualities of each item.
For example, consider placing each product within a separate shelf or cubby within the display. These shelves can be wall mounted or part of a more traditional display case. Then add small spotlights (or even LED track lighting) to each shelf in order to shower the individual items with light. The entire product display will end up illuminated, while each product receives its own focus for inspection. This approach can be quite attractive, without detracting from either your business as a whole or from the appeal of each individual item.
Do not forget to include ambient lighting within your product displays.
Accent lighting is an excellent choice for product displays because of its ability to draw attention to the details of the product, as well as allow your products to stand out from the other elements within your trade show exhibit. However, accent lighting on its own may not be enough to properly illuminate your product displays. At times like these, ambient lighting may be a good choice for making the entire product display area stand out to attendees.
Ambient lighting will probably be required throughout your trade show exhibit. Thanks to the high, fluorescent lighting of many venues, as well as the tendency toward darkness and shadows that that lighting creates within booths, you will need broad-based lighting solutions to properly illuminate your display.
Your product display area is no exception. While a few lights shining in the dark may look cool, they are not likely to show off your products to good effect. Instead, you will need to add sufficient ambient lighting, such as wall-mounted lights, table and floor lights, and recessed lighting, to provide enough illumination for the entire area.
Consider the mood you are setting within your trade show exhibit’s product displays.
Finally, one of the primary benefits of trade show display lighting is the ability to set a particular mood. Whether you want to go with fun and energetic, composed and professional, or low key, the right lighting can communicate the right feeling to attendees.
Use this ability to set mood to your advantage within your product displays. Do you want to get attendees excited about a brand new, cutting edge product? Use lighting within the display to communicate that energy. On the other hand, if you want to present your products in an elegant and luxurious light, the right illumination can do the trick.
The next time you have products to show off, ensure that they are represented in the right way. Reserve the use of your accent lighting to highlight your items; consider illuminating individual items; include ambient lighting, and consider the mood you want to set with your product lighting.
And, when you are ready to create an effective trade show exhibit that includes beautifully illuminated product displays, do not hesitate to reach out to Imagecraft. We can create custom exhibit displays that represent your brand in a compelling way, and that include building product displays, and lighting, that put your offerings in the best possible light. We can help you to send the right message through lighting, and other features, that will accurately, and compellingly, represent your business.
Trade show displays are true investments. The money and effort you put into them up front will reward you for years with trade show traffic, brand awareness, leads, and conversions for your business. In fact, the average trade show exhibit lasts anywhere from 3 to 7 years. As time goes on, however, even the best displays wear out or lose their usefulness and must be replaced. Following are a few signs that it may be time to buy a new trade show display.
Wear and Tear on the Old Display
Your display’s appearance is vital in capturing the attention of trade show attendees. In fact, when you designed your display, you and your exhibit company likely spent a great deal of time creating a look that would stand out on the exhibit floor. Because your display’s appearance plays such a large role in convincing trade show attendees to visit your booth, anything that detracts from that look can potentially harm your trade show success.
This is why signs of wear and tear on your display signal a need for a new trade show exhibit. While some things (such as burned out light bulbs) can be fixed, other kinds of damage (such as stains, dents, and scratches) become permanent parts of your display. And, a damaged display can call your professionalism and expertise into question in visitors’ minds. As a result, if you notice wear and tear on your display that cannot be easily fixed, you may need to consider replacing the display.
New Products and Services
Chances are, your current display is focused on specific products and services offered by your company. This focus is a smart marketing choice, because it allows you to inform visitors about the specific benefits they can gain from your company. People will naturally be drawn to a display that represents new, innovative, and unique products and services that they can take advantage of.
However, if your business releases new products and services, your display may quickly become outdated.
An outdated display is a reason to purchase a new one, because it is an inaccurate representation of your business. By using it, you will miss out on customers who could use your new products, and you may attract visitors who are looking for something you no longer offer. As a result, consider a new display anytime your company’s offerings begin to differ from what is represented in your display.
If done correctly, your trade show exhibit should reflect your company’s branding and personality. Logos, colors, and overall feel should all accurately represent what your company is about. If your branding changes, therefore, it is likely that your display will need to change as well. There are a number of reasons that your branding (or messaging) might change.
For instance, occasionally, businesses will undergo a rebranding that introduces a new logo, changes the colors or styles of the original brand, etc. In these cases, your old display will quickly become outdated. In addition, you may occasionally find yourself with a new marketing message that can change the overall appearance of your display.
You may also find that your branding changes when your business undergoes major changes, such as mergers and acquisitions. These changes mean that your business becomes part of another business. It may adopt the branding of the other business, or receive entirely new branding that merges your company’s brand and the other company’s brand. In these cases, your display will need to change in order to reflect these shifts in your brand.
Even if your booth is up to date and reflecting your most recent products and services, you may still need a new trade show exhibit if your old display is not meeting your marketing goals at trade shows. In particular, you may need to consider a new display if you find that your old display is being ignored in favor of your competition’s booths.
If you notice that your competitors are regularly bringing in noticeably more business, visitors, and attention to their booths at the same trade shows you are attending, you may need to revamp your own display in order to better compete with theirs. You can do this by using an exhibit company’s design services to create a new display that incorporates and improves upon many of the features that make your competitors’ booths stand out.
Finally, you may need to consider replacing your current trade show display if you find that it is inconvenient to transport, install, or dismantle. For transportation, drayage, and other trade show expenses, pricing is often based on weight. The heavier the display, the more you will pay. If you want to cut down on the expense of getting your trade show exhibit from place to place, you may want to consider a new display that is lighter and easier to move.
In addition, set up time can cost you money (and stress) on the exhibit floor. If you find that your display is taking a long time to set up, or causing headaches during installation and dismantling, you may need a new trade show exhibit. Exhibit companies today can create relatively lightweight and portable displays that can make your set up and tear down experiences much less stressful.
If you think you might benefit from a new trade show display, consider hiring an exhibit company to help you think through the possibilities for a new display. Whether you choose a rental exhibit, a portable display, or custom exhibits, obtaining a new display can help you to better meet your marketing and trade show goals.
Custom trade show displays represent a significant investment of time and money. Because of this investment, they are meant to last for years. However, in order to keep your display profitable for more than just an exhibiting season or two, you have to take steps to maintain it. Without careful maintenance, the display will quickly wear out, and you will find yourself spending even more money to replace a display that should have lasted longer. Fortunately, routine maintenance of your display is neither complicated nor overly expensive. Following are a few simple steps you can take to keep your trade show exhibit beautiful.
Clean your trade show display after every event.
During a trade show, your exhibit will see a lot of visitors. People will walk around, touch your graphics and products, use your technology, sit in your chairs, etc. In addition, even with firm rules in place, you may find that people occasionally eat or drink in your display. The result of all this use is a certain level of grime. While the display may not appear dirty after only a few days, this dirt and grime have a way of building up. If neglected, your display may begin to look shabby.
In order to keep your trade show exhibit looking fresh and appealing, you need to clean your display after every event. Wipe down all of your graphics with a soft cloth dampened with water and a mild soap that will not damage sensitive materials. In addition, wipe down tables, technology, shelving, and other elements of the display. Allow the entire display to dry completely before you get it ready to ship. The result should be an exhibit that looks new longer.
Inspect your display for damage after every trade show.
Big problems with your display usually begin as small issues. By addressing these smaller problems early, you can forestall major (and costly) breakdowns. For instance, if you notice that a bolt is coming loose, you can tighten it before it falls out and takes some of your graphics with it. If you replace burned out bulbs at the end of your trade show, you won’t have to scramble for lighting at your next event.
As a result, it is important for you to carefully inspect your display for any problems after each trade show. These issues can be small, so your inspection should be thorough and detailed. You should look for burned out bulbs, loose bolts, missing pieces, or small areas of wear and tear. Once you know what the problems are, you should have them repaired before you store your display. By doing so, you prevent small problems from snowballing into large and less manageable issues further down the road.
Pack and ship your display professionally.
Another area where being proactive can help maintain your display is packing and shipping. During transport, there are many opportunities for your display to get damaged from being dropped, bumped, or shifted around. In order to prevent this kind of damage, you need to make sure your crates are in good shape.
Some exhibit design companies will build crates for your display that are specially designed to protect your particular display. Consider using these services to ensure the best possible crating. In addition, inspect each crate before packing your display away and replace crates that show signs of wear and tear.
In addition, always pack your display away carefully. It may take time to dismantle and fold all the pieces correctly, but doing so ensures that the display will remain secure in its shipping containers. You might also want to consider having your display shipped professionally, preferably through your exhibit company. In the hands of professionals who understand the value and fragility of your custom trade show display, your exhibit is more likely to arrive safely at its destination.
Store your display in the right environment.
Another important step in maintaining your custom trade show display is to store your exhibit in the right environment. There are three qualities of a safe storage space for your display: Dryness, consistent temperature, and an area that is pest-free. The dryness prevents mildew and rotting; the steady temperature prevents damage caused by large temperature fluctuations, and a pest-free area prevents damage from animals and insects.
Sometimes, your exhibit company will offer storage for your custom trade show display. This storage, because it is offered by a company that knows what display storage requires, is ideal for keeping your exhibit safe. In addition, it is often available at a reasonable rate. Proper storage can prevent issues that might harm or even ruin your custom trade show display in between trade shows.
Finally, in order to keep your custom trade show display looking modern despite the constant changes in design and technology, consider adding upgrades to your custom trade show display. Often, your exhibit company will inspect your display for you before your trade show and allow you to update your graphics to achieve the message you want to send.
In addition, you may be able to buy more space in your exhibit, purchase different pieces of technology to improve its functionality, or invest in other elements that will improve your display’s overall appeal and usefulness. Your exhibit company’s design services may be able to help you pinpoint the upgrades that will work for you. The result can be a more modern display for much less money than you would spend creating an entirely new exhibit.
Custom exhibits deserve the best care you can give them. By cleaning your display after every event, inspecting it for damage after every show, shipping it professionally, storing it in the right environment, and installing upgrades, you can maintain your display’s appearance and profitability for years to come.
Museum exhibits are a powerful way to take a topic and make it visible and tangible for museum visitors. A successful museum exhibit design will enthrall visitors with rich information and a compelling display. While there are a number of qualities that define an excellent museum exhibit, perhaps the most important is an engaging story. Weaving the elements of your design into a fascinating narrative allows you to capture visitors’ attention in a way that no other technique can do. Following are a few of the ways you can use your museum exhibit design to create a compelling story.
Organize your story around a single objective
Effective storytelling in a museum exhibit is focused storytelling. The narrative you create should have a single purpose around which it is organized. For instance, it can encourage visitors to act, emphasize a particular aspect of your company, or recount historical events from a certain perspective. In order to determine what to focus your exhibit on, ask yourself what the central message is that you want to convey to museum visitors. What do you hope to accomplish?
For instance, say you want to create a museum that tells the history of your company. You could choose from among objectives such as emphasizing your company’s ability to innovate, teaching visitors about your philanthropic goals, or focusing on your business’ longevity and expertise. Each of these objectives will result in a slightly different museum exhibit design. Once you know what the organizing principle of your design will be, you can more easily create a compelling narrative.
Visually highlight the most important parts of the narrative.
Organizing your story around a single objective is only the first step in creating a compelling museum exhibit design. Once you know how you want to organize your story, you will need to visually highlight its most important parts. By allowing certain elements to stand out (through techniques such as larger text, technology, etc.), you allow visitors to quickly understand the basics of your narrative, no matter how briefly they stay.
The parts of your story that are the most visible in your museum exhibit design should be the broad points of the narrative (i.e. major company milestones). This does not mean that you omit the details that enliven your story. These details can be included in layers (such as longer presentations and smaller text) for visitors who want to spend more time exploring your display. This technique allows visitors to quickly grasp the broad outlines of the story if they wish to pass through quickly, or to take time to delve into the more detailed narrative if they want to learn more.
Create a logical flow.
Any story you tell needs to have a logical beginning, middle, and end. In addition, good stories all contain the essential elements of a plot, such as rising action, climax, falling action, and resolution. The story you tell through your museum exhibit design is no different. Each element of your design should contribute to a logical narrative arc.
For instance, if you want people to quickly pick up on the story’s progression, you might consider dividing your exhibit up based on the beginning, middle, and end of your story. In order to help visitors understand the arc of the story, you can use lighting, technology, and graphics to convey the rising action, the climax, and the resolution of the narrative. The key is to make sure that your exhibit is arranged logically so visitors can easily follow the story as it unfolds. When moving through this type of exhibit, visitors will be more engaged, delve more deeply, and remember your story longer.
Engage visitors’ senses.
One of the most important elements of a museum exhibit design is that it provide a stimulating experience that captures visitors’ full attention. While there are many ways to do so, one of the most effective is to engage visitors’ senses. A story that is only conveyed through writing may be interesting for visitors who enjoy the written word. However, it may lose the attention of others who are more tactile, or aural, or visual. In addition, visitors who have certain disabilities (such as blindness or hearing impairments) may not be able to enjoy the story if it is only told in one way. As a result, the most effective museum exhibits engage all of the senses.
For instance, instead of simply writing down information on a placard, consider adding compatibility with a screen reader, or provide technology to have the information read out loud to the visitor. Add elements (such as millwork or statues) that can be felt or manipulated by visitors. Include interactive technology (such as kiosks or mobile apps) that will interest more technically-savvy visitors. By creating a museum exhibit design that engages all the senses, you will create a truly immersive, and accessible, experience for all of your visitors.
Use compelling graphics.
Finally, never shy away from using quality graphics in your museum exhibit design. The graphics (such as placards, signage, photographs, and images) are the elements that bring the story to life. They are the elements that explain and interpret the artifacts and objects that are on display. As a result, they need to be high-quality, clear, and compelling in order to create a museum exhibit that will effectively tell a compelling story. For instance, the basic elements of good graphics include clear, readable fonts; relevant and stunning images; plenty of white space, and a balance of complementary colors. In addition, your exhibit company’s design services should be able to guide you regarding the exact graphics that will best represent your story in your display.
A museum exhibit is a unique opportunity to tell a story that people need to hear. Using effective storytelling techniques can make it easier for you to convey your story in a compelling and memorable manner. By organizing your narrative around a single goal, highlighting the most important parts of the story, creating a logical flow, engaging visitors’ senses, and using compelling graphics, you can tell a story through your museum design exhibit that visitors will remember for the long-term.
There are many options for adding lighting to your custom exhibits. Each choice has its own unique features, and the one you select will depend on your display needs. However, for trade show displays, LED lighting is easily one of the most popular and versatile options. This type of lighting has quickly become a multi-billion dollar industry due to the advantages it offers over incandescent lights. For exhibitors, they offer a bright, energy efficient, cost-effective way to light up the exhibit. Following are just a few of the benefits that LED lighting provides for trade show displays.
LED lights last about 100 times longer than incandescent light bulbs. This means that an LED light can run continuously for up to 11 years before needing to be replaced. If you use it for just 8 hours a day, you can expect your light to last about 20 years. This exceptionally long life means that light replacement only happens rarely, allowing you to enjoy dependable light for many years.
This long life is ideal for a trade show exhibit because it means that you almost never need to replace your LED bulbs. As a result, you do not have to worry about your lighting failing partway through the show. In addition, even if an LED light begins to wear down, it gradually becomes dimmer, instead of just turning off altogether. The result is an extremely long-lasting and reliable type of light for your trade show display.
In addition to their long life, LEDs are extremely energy efficient. This means that they waste less energy than do more traditional forms of lighting. For instance, incandescent bulbs only use about 20 percent of the energy they produce to create light. The other 80 percent is lost (usually in the form of heat). In contrast, LED lights use 80 percent of the energy they produce, and lose only 20 percent of their energy to heat.
This more productive use of energy means that LED lights will cost you less money in the long run, be better for the environment, and produce a cooler light than do incandescent bulbs. All of these features make LED lights a smart choice for many trade show displays, as exhibitors try to cut down on expenses related to their exhibit and avoid hot lights that can burn visitors.
As mentioned above, LED lights tend to lower your electrical bill thanks to their more efficient use of energy. Because they use more of the energy they produce to make light, they need to draw less electricity overall to meet your lighting needs. In addition, LED lights are cost effective because they rarely need to be replaced. Because they save you money in two ways, LED lights tend to be much easier on the budget than are incandescent lights.
The budget-friendly nature of LED lights is one of the reasons that they have become so popular among trade show exhibitors. They allow you to achieve the type of lighting you need for a compelling display while keeping your display costs to a minimum. Such economical results are ideal for companies seeking to create a successful display on a tight budget.
In addition to their long life, energy efficiency, and cost effectiveness, LED lights are good for the environment. For instance, they contain none of the mercury that is sometimes present in other types of lighting. Each LED bulb, because it lasts so long, also replaces up to 25 incandescent bulbs. This means that it saves on the materials it takes to produce these bulbs. Finally, each LED light is recyclable, meaning that its materials can be reused once it is worn out. As a result, choosing LED lights can be a way for your business to cut down on its carbon footprint while achieving the type of eye-catching display you need.
Low Heat Output
LED lights are also a good choice for trade show displays because they produce less heat than do many other types of lighting. As mentioned above, their energy efficiency allows them to produce only 20 percent of their energy as heat. Compared to the 80 percent of energy that incandescent bulbs convert into heat, this is a very low number, and results in a very cool light.
When it comes to your trade show display, cooler lights are preferable, especially for lighting close to your booth visitors. You want to avoid the chance that visitors will bump your lighting and get burned. By using LEDs, you can create a safer and more pleasant lighting experience for your booth visitors, without compromising the quality of your display.
Finally, LED lights are a good choice for trade show exhibits because they are versatile. For instance, this type of lighting comes in a wide range of colors so you can choose the ones that best suit your display. In addition, they can easily be arranged in different patterns to achieve the look you want. Finally, they can be used in rail lighting, as back lighting, and in many other areas of your display. The result is that you can use LED lights to create the type of breathtaking display that will set your trade show exhibit apart.
LED lighting is only one choice from among many for creating a compelling display. Your exhibit company should be able to provide you with your options and guide you regarding the best methods for your particular needs. However, the LED’s long life, energy efficiency, cost effectiveness, environmental friendliness, low heat output, and versatility make it a sound choice for at least some of your trade show display needs.