Adding Fabric Structures to Your Trade Show booth

Lately more and more exhibitors are adding fabric structures to their booth. The main reason for this is due to the high cost of shipping and drayage (the cost to move your trade show booth from the convention dock to your booth location and back to the dock for the ship out )  Shipping and drayage are both based on weight and size .  Keeping both down will result in lower cost to get to the convention hall. The other cost saving item in using fabric structure is the set up time and cost. While large panels and ridged printed graphics take more time to put up fabric structure are light weight and easy to handle.  

The draw back in using the typical fabric structure which is fabric stretched over aluminums structure is the handling of the fabric, which in time get dirty and worn. The cost to replace this is expensive. Well to get to my point, along come the Delta Fabric system. This system comes with an aluminum frame typical to a 4×8 panel structure but weight quite a bit less. The structure holds the fabric in place by snapping into a frame groove , this can be done prior to the show  unless you are using both sides with fabric. Delta Fabric  can be shipped in one standard crate a 16 panels while the typical trade show panel structure you can only hold 8 in a crate  (typical crate ).  The fabric cane be switched out without any big hassles, just snap it on on-site.  The typical fabric structure usually zips on around an aluminum frame, from my experience the fabric usually tear after a few time out. The structures are not usually very structural. In this case you trade out the weight etc for strength. The Delta Fabric provide the strength of a traditional panel system, the ease of setting up and the ability to use extremely large fabric inserts graphics,  this a win win situation

Delta Fabric booth
detail delta fabric

The “Delta Fabric” system is a modular, graphic presentation system that combines lightweight aluminum frames and graphic messaging in a choice of sizes and display options. The aluminum frames and columns can be ordered in custom sizes to fit display needs. The frames assemble with an Allen key, and feature a variety of optional connections that allow frames to connect to other aluminum systems. Build large unique and dynamic structures to match your company’s image, set it up less hassles for more on this system contact http://eldsusa.com

Understanding The Language Of Trade Shows

I decided to write this to help some exhibitors understand the terminology of the trade show industry.  In order to get what you want done on the trade show floor you must first understand the terminology.   I remember years ago when I first entered the trade show industry, I simple did not know most of the terminology. In that I decided to see if I can help a little by putting some terms together to see if I can help others

Blueprint
Blueprint drawings is the drawing of a particular booth etither for set up ofr for building

Bill of Lading (B/L)
The Bill of Lading paperwork sets the fees and terms between transportation companies and shippers regarding transporting goods.

Back-light
To back-light means setting a light source from behind to light up frontal area

Cam lock

This is usually a locking device used mainly to attach panels; it can also be a  timbler type lock

CWT (Certified Weight Ticket)
the CWT unit of measuremnt used to messure the weight by th hundred pound weight. example 4 hundred pounds in CWT is  4cwt

Drayage
The process of drayage involves moving show materials from the  convention dock area to your booth space for set up and then back to the dock again at the end of a trade show.

Foul Bill of Lading
a transportation carrier issues a Foul Bill of Lading which is a document showing that material received was damaged

Grid System
A grid system includes a structural network of support systems and electrical conduits.

Hard Card
A hard card is a work order requesting services or labor. .This is a document that time will be recorded on

Junction Box
Junction boxes of “J” box is a point where a electrical cords will meet in one metal box.

Labor Call
Labor call is when you set up a specific time for you to receive your laborer for your booth. Example you have a labor call for 4 men on friday at 8:00am. Your labor will be there waiting at 8:00am on Friday ready to work

 Less Than Truckload (LTL)
Less than truckload, or LTL, is the set rate charged for freight that weighs less than the minimum weight specified.

Light Box
Light boxes are boxes containing light fixtures, usally to light up graphics from the rear

Linear Display
a linear or in-line display is a display which is set up straight inline with the Aisle.  This space can only be approached from aisle unless this is at the end of an aisle

Marshaling Yard
the marshaling yard is the area where trucks wait for dispatch. Truck drivers check-in with a trade show facility and then proceed to the marshaling yard to wait for loading and unloading instructions.

Masking Drape
masking drapes are cloths that cover storage areas. Usally in rear of booth space  or covering columns etc .

Union
A union is an organized group of workers who protect the rights of workers and increase the bargaining power with employers on the issues of hours, benefits, and wages.

Modular Exhibit
A modular exhibit is built with interchangeable components able to be set up in different sizes and arrangements.

O.T. Labor
O.T. labor, or overtime labor, is worked performed outside of regular work hours.

Rear Illumination
Rear illumination, also called back-lighting, involves lighting a translucent image from behind.

Rigger
Workers who handle and assemble machinery hanging signs etc  .

Runner

 This is the person who goes out to get anything for your booth, may it be carpet tape or light bulbs etc

Trade show displays

This is the actual component that make up your booth space. These structures display your product or service

 S.T. Labor
S.T. labor, Straight time this is usally between the agreed 8 hour time frame, any thing after this is either Overtime or Doubletime

Scissors Lift
a scissors lift is a motorized platform that can lift people to a certain height. Usally used to do high or above the floor work

Set-up Drawing
Set-up drawings are installation instructions to set up the booth in question.

Shipping Crate
shipping crates is used to transport the product to and from trade show. Basicly it is a container for transporting items

Show Manager
Show managers organize and manage the trade show and or event.

Subcontractor
Subcontractors are individuals or companies hired by a general contractor to provide services for a trade show. This person or company usally have to file a EAC form , Exhibitors appointed contractor.

Turnkey Packages
Turnkey packages all inclusive trade show booth and components, labor to set up and dismanatle booth .

Velcro
Velcro is the trade name for hook and loop fabric that joins when pressed together and separate when pulled apart.

Exhibit Designer/Producer
The exhibit designer/producer is the individual or company responsible for the design and construction of exhibit booths.

Choosing The Best Trade Show Booth Design

The design of your trade show booth is very important. A great deal of exhibitors makes the wrong choice every day due to lack of knowledge of the trade show industry.  No two companies are the same and therefore now two designs should be the same. There are many companies out there that just pull generic designs from their portfolio and expect it to work for their clients.  Some actually do work to degree.   If you have choice of choosing a design that is specific to your firm and have a choice of picking one out of a catalogue, what would you do?  I would hope that the specific or custom design would be your choice.  Why?

Custom design are much more indebt as to what the exhibitor wants and needs.  Custom design makes you stand out from the rest of exhibits and competitor at the show.

I recently provided a booth to a client at a particular show which was a small 10×20 booth; we applied a large graphic cut out of a giraffe to the back wall.  The image hung over the back wall. This giraffe had nothing to do with the client product. It just carried a theme “head and shoulders above the competition” needless to say it was smash at the show. More conversation about the giraffe was at the show. Leads were generated and when the sales representative  contacted these leads all he or she had to say is we are X Company, you remember the company that had the big giraffe at the show. 

I say this to say stay away from “cookie cutter designs” if you can they say nothing about your company ask your exhibit house to provide a custom design for you, show some personality.   Do not run from exhibit house to exhibit house choose a good design and exhibit house to work with and let them work out your design. To get a no obligatory design contact http://eldsusa.com

Exhibiting At Your First Trade Show

Having been in the trade show industry for over 20 years as a designer,
manufacturer and collaborator with exhibitors and show management has been
very enlightening. What always seem to get my attention are the new trade
show attendees who come to the show with great expectations only to find that
at the end of the show they have made neither leads nor sales. I am here to
tell you that you have either exhibited at the wrong show or most likely you
went to the show totally unprepared. In this article we will offer some
pointers to the unprepared exhibitor. Here are a few suggestions:Â Goal:
First thing and one thing only, ˜sales and leads” Sure you want product
branding, but ultimately sales and leads ought to be the exhibitor’s primary
objectives

For the new exhibitor’s first trade show I would suggest taking this approach.

Secure your booth location preferably a location near the front of the main
entry to the exhibit hall, It’s also always good to get located near one of
the larger veterans of that particular trade show. This will help to get you
in the traffic spot light. Many people feel that getting on the front line of
the exhibit hall is the best location, but that’s not necessarily so,
sometimes people move through the exhibit hall pass the front line before
they truly begin to focus on what they want. Therefore, a location near the
front, but not right in the immediate front line.
The exhibitor’s booth should be a ˜crowd pleaser” while still projecting the
company’s image – a good way to get traffic to your booth.Secondly, offer a
good product give-a-way or a prize. Please make sure that this prize is a
good one, if you specialize in tire changing equipment do not give away iPods,

or plasma screens. Everyone in the convention hall would love to get a
plasma screen or an IPod. They will sign up for this, even if they are not
interested in your product. This is a waste of time. Smart move is to have a
drawing for a top of the line tire changing equipment or some service you
provided. This will ensure that whoever signs up for this has some knowledge
of systems and would prefer part of your service. They most likely are
interested and need a tire changing machine and are willing to spend that
kind of money on one. The list of sign-ups for the give-a-way/prize you have
a list of leads, remember you what you are there for hint leads which can
eventually turn into sales. How easy would that be to follow up a lead from
your list of people who signed up for your drawing to win a tire changing
equipment? Let’s call this a targeted lead, why? you know what they are
interested in – mufflers

Second thing, at your first trade show always have a theme for your trade
show booth. I have seen exhibitor at trade show with great looking custom
trade show booth
, crowds form around the booth and say wow what a nice
looking booth, but five minutes later after leaving the booth they do not
remember the exhibitors name or his or her product, but they remember the
theme the booth had. Use this to your advantage design your booth with a
theme that relates to your product. Incorporate your product name as well as
your corporate name, now you are cooking with grease. I remember a few years
ago I met a childhood idol, Jerry Lucas, yes the same Jerry Lucas who played
for the world champion New York Knicks in basketball. When I met Jerry Lucas
he was promoting a way to remember names of people he met. Well I am here to
tell you it works, he simply would pick out some unique feature about that
person, it could be the voice, the person’s height or some unique feature, he
would then make a mental tie to the person’s name. This way he would remember
a unique feature and the name would follow. The same principle works with
trade show booth, remember the design and theme and then you will remember
the corporate name. That same theme should not only be reflected in the exhibit booth design but it should also be carried through onto your literature and give-away. That’s your “corporate branding”  for more

information http://www.eldsusa.com

Exhibiting In Bad Economic Times

Exhibiting at trade shows in these bad economic times is a major issue for the trade show industry. Many exhibitors are deciding not to attend various trade shows and are cutting back on the size of their booth.   Some seasoned exhibitors are now visiting the shows only as show attendees and not as trade show exhibitors. Why? The costs that accompany these events.  Other innovative exhibitors rent suites and invite their clients to their suites to demo new products etc.  In attempting  to  address these issues I would say that despite innovative measures to be a part of the tradeshow marketing process in these economic times, pulling out of the show is not the answer 

Here are some of the draw backs in not attending the shows that an exhibitor  normally attends:  a) exhibitor’s seniority is lost – putting you at a disadvantage in placement for the next show when you decide to re-enter that particular show  b) prime locations that were usually allotted to you as an exhibitor is now given to other regular exhibitors, thus only allowing some off-the-beat traffic location to you.  Another ill-advised alternative is to reduce your usual booth and show site.  An example, say, your company usually attend a show using a 20×20 or 20×30 and you now are using a 10×10. Reason? Your company’s image has a tendency to be diminished giving the impression to both clients  and competitors that your business is not doing well. Would you depend on this company be around in the future?

Few pointers: The best thing to do in this case is keep the same size booth and location. Try and reduce your labor cost, your shipping cost and your drayage cost. These are all changes that the consumer as well as competitor will never see nor notice.  The next sensible thing to do is to rent a custom trade show booth as opposed to purchasing one.  Custom means exactly that – your company is still doing well and still has the ability to exhibit your products in a custom booth. There will be no signage on your booth saying “rented”. You are still giving the impression that your company is not affected by the dim economy.  Renting a custom booth will cost you a lot less than purchasing one.  Advantages?  Exhibitor has no head-ache for transportation and refurbishment costs. Clients can now enjoy a full turnkey operation, while knowing  exactly what their cost will be in the end. This way there are no surprises, nothing over the budget unless added by the client.   Custom design rental booths are generally life savers for those exhibitors trying to keep abreast with this economy and still remain regular tradeshow exhibitors under a strict budgetary constraints.

Lately we have seen many larger exhibit companies trashing their custom exhibit booth and resorting to the use of a full turnkey rental trade show booth.  Multi rentals are also an advantage for most clients who attend numerous  show.  Different shows may require different  configurations as well as different sizes and locations. In the past client would have have to invest in two or three different booth, not so anymore, rental booth can be supplied in most major cities  with the same look and all are generated from one source