Trade Show Booth Ideas

As recently as 2017, the Center for Exhibition Industry Research suggested that 99% of marketers believe trade shows provide companies more value in ways other marketing opportunities cannot. Just being there does not absolutely lead to capitalizing on those opportunities that may be presented. It takes a lot of ideas and planning, as well as execution to ensure the ROI for exhibiting at a trade show provides that value to your company.

There are endless ideas that you can discuss or put into action and it’s important to keep up with trends and use fresh ideas. It’s also important to develop a good core of ideas or concepts that can help you create ideas from for each show. Those core concepts allow you to implement new ideas each year while already having a base from which to build upon.

Here are a few creative trade show booth ideas that will lead to more ideas (and attract visitors), for exhibitors no matter if you’re a major company exhibiting or on a small budget. 

Have a Purpose

When you commit to exhibiting at a trade show, there should be a main idea or reason behind your company having a presence there. You should study and know what kind of returns your company should expect by being there. Find a purpose for exhibiting and what attendees and hopeful clients or customers are taking away. Whether you’re promoting a new product or service, looking to connect with a new customer base, connect with existing customers or delivering a presentation, your company should have a purpose for exhibiting at any trade show and the show’s attendees should clearly leave knowing what that purpose was as well.

Brand Cohesiveness

Your brand should be present in every part of your trade show display. All your displays should clearly represent your brand in the same way. Your graphics, logos, colors and messaging for that trade show should be clear on every display throughout your trade show booth. Decide on your message and presentation of it, plan your displays around that and put your brand’s stamp on it in a noticeable way. When attendees walk by your trade show booth, they should be able to walk away having seen and understood your brand message and purpose for being there, very clearly.

Create a Theme

This can serve as an easy to way help incorporate your company’s purpose and brand into the planning of your trade show booth. Build the theme around the purpose for being there, which allows you to uniquely put your brand’s stamp on it. Creating a trade show hashtag or tagline, centering your displays and training around the product, service or presentation you are promoting can all serve as part of a central trade show booth theme. Coordinate any games, discounts, giveaways, prizes, staff attire, and presentations around a central theme. Finding the right theme may be the hard part, but when you find the right idea or fit, every other part of planning your trade show booth will be easier when it revolves around a central theme.

Furnish Your Booth

Much of the time spent planning a trade show booth is devoted to what type of displays will be used and their graphics. Those are important decisions, so it makes sense that this is where the most time is allocated, but don’t overlook furniture for your booth. This doesn’t mean just chairs for your staffers to sit at a table. It all depends on the size of the exhibition hall, your booth and somewhat, your budget, but furnishing your trade show booth is an easy way to attract customers. By simply and strategically placing Trade Show Cocktail Tables or Pub Tables and Bar Stools in accessible corners of your booth, you will attract more trade show attendees. This gives your staff an area to comfortably entertain and engage attendees but also provides them a place to rest between a conference session or walking around the trade show floor. Attendees may not specifically seek your booth or services, but if you have some seating or a table quickly accessible to them to take a breather or eat their lunch, you may strike up a conversation and create a new connection or client by simply adding trade show furniture. You can step up your booth furniture a notch further by adding LED Tables and Stools to stand out from the crowd even more!

 Don’t Create a Barrier

Your ability to design the layout of your booth is of course predicated around how much space you have. The less space you have in your trade show booth, the more you need to work to optimize it. You’re not always going to have a peninsula or island booth space, which usually maximize attract traffic and traffic flow. If you have a perimeter or an inline booth space on a wall or in an aisle, you want to take advantage of all the space available to you. Especially considering what you’ll pay to rent a space. One significant way you can keep your trade show booth open, no matter the layout space you pick, is to eliminate the barrier that a front of the booth trade show tables can create. Your booth will appear more inviting and the flow of traffic will be better in and around your booth for it. Podium Wraps for your shipping case turns them into an effective podium that takes the place of a traditional table. Portable trade show podiums that you can set up and take down yourself are also a good way to go for a simple presentation or greeting area but don’t take up extra valuable space either.

Game Show

Games are a great way to attract attention to your booth and create excitement. There are endless possibilities for every company exhibiting at a trade show on any budget to gamify their trade show booth. Some companies at bigger shows have taken to the practice of renting arcade games both classic and modern. There are sites that specialize in renting them for events, specifically.  If that’s a little out of your budget and space, Prize Wheels are a much more affordable and space conscious option to bring some life to your trade show booth. They are portable and even reusable. These types of ideas are each eye-catchers to trade show attendees. Games also give them a reason to visit your trade show booth a second time if they entered in a contest or drawing as well. More visits are always a good thing.

Re-Charging Stations

Charging Stations should be the low hanging fruit for any company exhibiting at a trade show. There’s a good chance of finding an attendee who has run down his cell phone battery taking video at sessions or taking calls while away from the office. It also gives you a chance to potentially flag down a media member looking for a quick recharge as well while they take video or do interviews. You can also double-down with Charging Kiosks with custom printed posters to draw more attention to it and offer refreshments to recharge more than just attendees’ electronics.

Overhead Displays

Be sure to check the regulations for the event venue and each trade show before purchasing, but custom printed overhead hanging displays are a great away to attract attention from a distance. These are mostly seen with island displays and some peninsula booths because they help maximize attention to your space on a crowded trade show floor with hard to miss graphics. This is a display you won’t be able to set up yourself, obviously, so remember that when you plan for any drayage in your trade show budget.

Show Specific Deals and Meaningful Giveaways

A good way to make your presence at a trade show more valuable and memorable is to offer specific deals and giveaways. Tailor any offers on products or services to your audience and what type of lead you are looking to attract. Apply the same thinking to your giveaways and branded trade show swag. Specific deals and offers only attendees can get gives you a very basic way to see your ROI from attending the trade show. You should also make sure the giveaways you are spending money on stocking and bringing to trade shows are items that attendees will want and use. Throwaway items are fine just for increasing your inventory but if you have giveaways that attendees want and will use, you can increase how likely they are to remember your company or pass the word around so more people visit your booth.

Bonus Ideas

  • Trade Show Flooring can really set your booth apart from competitors as it creates a more inviting feel to your booth
  • Make sure your booth and displays are well lit by bringing your own lighting and purchasing  for your displays
  • If you are traveling a significant distance out of town, scout the area before attending and gain some knowledge about the city so you can be helpful to attendees who might ask questions about the area
  • Always have a demonstration about one of your products or services, whether you are promoting a new one or not, that way you still have something physical to show attendees
  • Test run all your displays and tech for the show, so you know what pitfalls to look for and take the time to focus on training everyone who will be at the show on the plan and direction your company wants to take