Event Marketing

Increasing ROI Through Thoughtful Exhibit Design

Guest post by Rob Majerowski, Exhibitus

When it comes to face-to-face marketing activations, exhibiting at trade shows puts your brand in front of people who may not have found you otherwise. Successful engagement is a key component on the path of turning prospects into established, valuable customers.

Nothing is worse than investing funds in an exhibit space, only to leave without generating enough qualified leads to meet your program’s goals and objectives. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to increase your trade show ROI, including design tactics.

Thoughtful exhibit design facilitates visitor interest and engagement, both key to capturing targeted leads. If you want to increase your exhibit program’s ROI, start with an attractive and well-designed booth.

Get Creative

There will be trade show attendees that miss your pre-show marketing or haven’t heard of your company. Attracting them to your space is a great way to increase your ROI. Creative designs will naturally draw visitors your way while showcasing your brand’s personality.

Themed exhibits are a great way to stand out from the crowd. This approach works best when the theme relates to your unique selling proposition. Who are you, what do you do, and how do you do it better than your competitors? Identify what sets you apart from the rest, and develop imagery that speaks to your unique capabilities.

The visual aspects of your booth should communicate the core elements of your brand. Use your design to let attendees know who you are and what you do. This helps bring your target audience to you.

Make It Interactive

Trade show marketing has evolved, becoming an active endeavor that relies on lasting experiences. Product displays and service descriptions aren’t enough.  Even demo stations are decreasing in popularity if prospects can only stand at a distance and watch.

Give attendees more control over their experience. Touch screen tablets and kiosks are great tools for drawing people over and keeping them at your booth. RFID tables and VR experiences will create buzz on the trade show floor and educate users about your company.

Be Strategic with Layout

While you may be tempted to use every possible inch of your space, think again. Cluttered and crowded booths will drive prospects away. Instead, maximize your booth space to be inviting and engaging.

The elements of your exhibit should support your marketing message without being overwhelming to visitors. A touchscreen slideshow featuring your products works better than stuffing your horizontal space full of everything you make.

Avoid putting a table between booth staff and trade show attendees. Everything should be set up in a way that invites them into your space.

Focus on Results

Put together a plan to measure what’s meaningful for your strategy that encompasses items beyond cost-per-lead.  These metrics should consider new business opportunities, customer retention and/or risk, value of marketing communication and promotion, and cost avoidance opportunities by leveraging the concentration of prospects, clients, vendors, recruits, etc. that presents itself at the show.

This strategic focus provides you with thoughtful design that’s met with a powerful measurement strategy.  A great architectural and engagement design delivers measurable results, and you’ll be well on your way!

About the Author

Rob Majerowski is the General Manager of the Chicago Division of Exhibitus, an Atlanta-based experiential marketer.  He leads the office, bringing strategy and structure to its plan for growing local sales and production capability.

With over 20 years leading creative studios and new business development teams, Rob brings deep experience and success to the front-end creative and sales strategy, helping clients create and bring to life their ideal visitor experience within their face2face marketing environments.

Exhibitus is a HITMC19 Gold Sponsor.

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