Location, Location, Location:
This rule from the real estate world works just as well in the trade show field, where you're essentially renting real estate for a three-day show for your portable trade show booths. While there's a lot more you can do to ensure your participation in a show is successful, if you don't get the location right, you've shot yourself in the foot before you start.
But you can't always get what you want. Usually, spots on the show floor are assigned based on seniority (how long your company has participated in the show). Those who've been part of the show in the past are given the first opportunity to choose their space. New exhibitors are at the end of the line when it comes to selecting their spaces.
So what's a good location? Ideally, you're looking for an area with the highest traffic pattern: near the front of the hall, near the food concessions, even near the restrooms. All these positions are virtually guaranteed a higher rate of foot traffic than those spaces off in the corners.
What Moves You:
Even if you don't get the ideal space you want, let the show organizer know you'd be willing to move if a better space opens up, due to another exhibitor pulling out of the show, which can sometimes happen just days before the show is set to open. If you can be flexible, you might just get a space you couldn't have gotten at any price earlier in the game.
While location is important, it's not the only key to trade show success. The clarity of your marketing message, the skills of the people staffing your exhibit, and the steps you've taken to contact prospects before the show to invite them to visit your exhibit all these elements have an enormous impact on your overall success at a show.
Another aspect of location is where your competitors are on the show floor. You'll want to do what you can to keep some distance between you and them. Show management can help in identifying the spaces of those competitive businesses you don't want to be located near.
In choosing a space, you're also going to have to decide how large that space needs to be. If you already own an exhibit, you've got your answer. If you'll be renting an exhibit for your upcoming show booth displays, you'll want to consider factors like your competition's booth size, how much space the products you'll be displaying will require, and how many of your people will be staffing the booth.
A good rule of thumb is to plan for about 50 square feet of open floor space for each booth staffer. If you'll be having meetings in your exhibit, you'll want to take that space requirement into consideration, as well.
Room With A View:
Also remember that a corner space gives you the opportunity to attract foot traffic on two sides, doubling the number of show attendees you'd reach with an in-line exhibit.
One caveat: it's always better to grow your booth space than it is to shrink it. Downsizing your exhibit from one year to the next sends a subliminal message that your company isn't as healthy as it was the previous year.
According to most experts, booths that are visually appealing and larger in size are the most often remembered by show attendees. So if you can't go larger, consider going bolder with your graphics. That's what the experts at Smash Hit Displays can help you with, offering virtually unlimited ways to make your exhibit a stand-out!