5 tips and two case studies illustrating ways to make your booth and exhibition marketing more productive and personalised.
How many times have we managed a small or large exhibition area? How often have we obsessed over booth dimensions and the best way to wedge them all into the available space? These questions doubtless resonate with you to some extent. What may be less familiar is the concept of the booth as part of a much larger marketing strategy, not only for our sponsors, but also for our association clients.
Designing and building a stand is about so much more than deciding how many walls it should have!
So here are 5 ways to transform a stand to boost your brand:
- SMART SPACES: Ensure that structural panels include the right mix of useful data/relevant news and brand-aligned design elements that make it a “beautiful” space. A stand should be brand-aligned, using the relevant colors and shapes, but should also function as a source of information and catalyst for strategic networking.
- SUSTAINABLE MATERIALS: Begin with the basics. Before considering colors and content, liaise with the stand building company to agree the most appropriate materials. The structure should be modular, easy to build and to dismantle, and made with recycled or sustainable materials wherever possible. This also offers a smart communication opportunity and an additional tick in the box, reinforcing the company ESG growth model. And wood and green corners are very “instagrammable” too!
- INTEGRATED PROJECTS: Think of the booth as a part of a wider marketing strategy. Within an association congress, for instance, the expo area is the place that companies want delegates to visit. An integrated campaign should therefore be put in place to drive that traffic. Leaflets around the venue, social ADV campaign, Google ADS campaign, email marketing, podcasts: a variety of channels, both online and offline, should be used to drive awareness and interest, always ensuring that the material is relevant and consistent with the overall strategy.
- CREATIVE CONCEPT: design a strong creative concept to respond to the company’s strategic needs. This could be the launch of a new product, a specific corporate objective or an important acquisition… Work closely with the art director and creative team to define a concept which can be developed further on panels with pictures and graphics and can also be incorporated within engagement activities at the booth.
- BRANDED ENGAGEMENT: choose one or more items that drive engagement at the physical booth itself. It doesn’t need to be high-tech or incredibly expensive; it could instead mean choosing furniture with a specific style - vintage, futuristic or playful - or dedicating a panel to a collaborative game such as tic-tac-toe, wheel of fortune or Tetris which is consistent with brand values and communication goals. F Floor signage ‘leading the and/or showcasing goods or services ‘phygitally’ by placing them within glass interactive boxes might also be interesting strategies.
AIM Group International and AIM Communication’s operational teams of event planners, creative strategists, and art directors, have recently been developing concepts and structures of this kind for diverse clients.
Amongst these is ATM, Azienda Trasporti Milanesi, Milan’s public transport company who commissioned us to design a booth to participate alongside the Municipality of Milano in the European Mobility Expo in Paris in May this year. Our creative team had the honor drafting a strong creative concept for the stand. The city’s shape was the inspiration for the design: Its circular structure became the leitmotiv to depict the mission and commitment to sustainability and innovation. A balanced mix of facts and figures, infographics, nice big pictures, and a transport map of the city created a functional and good-looking booth, using the rule of smart spaces and a strong creative concept.
So don’t be constrained by convention when considering your next stand, free your imagination and design an augmented, lasting brand experience.