Small budget tradeshow booths can still have great impact.

Duchin Productions has been creating video for trade shows for years. In that time, we’ve learned some great cost saving tricks to maximize exhibitor space and exposure regardless of the size of the booth space. One of our clients recently exhibited at a large trade show and despite a modest budget, they were still able to make an impact. We decided to share these tips with everyone:
Skip the 6’ table
Just say no! Instead, opt for a tall cocktail table with bar stools. We suggest this for a number of reasons:
– It allows for better eye contact with attendees and a more intimate setting
– Opens up the booth for better flow to both your staff and visitors
– Makes the experience a bit more personal
– Laptop demos are easier to see and don’t require bending down
– Is more conducive to conversation
– If you want to keep it, then put it near the back of the booth
3boothsjpg4blogFlat screen displays
It’s almost always more economical to ship your own flat screen monitor vs. renting one on-site. The cost of a multi-day screen rental combined with set up labor, service fees and taxes can be extremely expensive. If you need a large electronic display, consider purchasing it locally and then either raffling it off as a prize or donating it at the end of the show to a local charity. The P.R. you can get from giving away a flat screen monitor to a needy charity often outweighs the rental fee tax write off.

AV Carts
Rolling carts are so handy for so many reasons. Here’s why:
– They’re very inexpensive to rent, usually about $15/day
– They’re perfect for getting your video displays at eye level
– They make for a great storage space for bags, collateral, give aways etc. on the shelves below
– They almost always come with a pleated black skirt to hide items
– They can be easily branded with company signage
– They’re on wheels allows and move easily
– They’ll make your space look more professional
– Some are made of plastic and can be broken down flat
– In a nutshell, don’t do a show without one!
3 AV cart variations
Never forget to bring plenty of multi outlet power strips. Laptops, phone chargers, etc. take up lots of space electrical space. If you need to get an additional strip from the venue, chances are they will charge you a small fortune. Be sure to bring at least 5 (yes, five) for every show. Also bring 3-5, grounded, extension cords for obvious reasons. You can always make great friends if you have a spare for your booth neighbor! Speaking of neighbors, if the venue wants piles of money for basic booth power, consider contacting the company adjacent to your to discuss sharing/splitting one circuit. We’ve seen venues charge as much as $250/20 amp circuit/per day. And to top it all off, installation was extra!
Don’t accept the paper sign above your booth as your company branding. There are so many ways to do this more professionally and affordably. Pop up booths look great but they’re expensive to buy, ship and take up a sizeable footprint. For small budgets, we love banner stands. They’re light weight, fold incredibly small and don’t get create lines on your graphics when packed away. Once you invest in the physical stand/cassette, you can then simply have different graphics produced for future shows. Today’s printing technology can produce really beautiful results.
Hanging signs:
Most trade shows separate small booths with pipe and drape. People can struggle for hours trying to hang and level signs and posters. The simple solution: cheap shower curtain hooks. They allow you to do all your rigging and measuring on the floor which further protects your expensive graphics. Secure the poster to the hooks with thin baling wire instead of traditional fishing line. The metal wire makes leveling MUCH easier and you don’t need to know any fancy knotting techniques. When you’re ready, just drop the hooks over the pole and you done. Making small adjustments is a breeze plus the decorators won’t scream at you for putting pins through their expensive drape.
Other items that can be indespesible at any trade show:
– Multi-tool (like a Leatherman)
– Scissors
– Velcro
– Clear packing tape
– Cash (for tips)
– Laptop cable locks
– Pens and Sharpie markers
– Business cards
– Collateral holders (allows for more table space)
– Shipping labels
– List of contact names and numbers for the trade show management
– Asprin
Of course, the next time you need video or audio support for your company, please call or email and we’ll be happy to give you more ideas.
(978) 338-5699