Stand Out from the Crowd with An Effective Exhibit Design

February 20, 2023
Stand Out from the Crowd with An Effective Exhibit Design
By Roger Noel, MA

Stand Out from the Crowd with An Effective Exhibit Design.

First Impression

First impressions are essentially made up of a combination of an experience and the environment in which it happens. How important are they? Quite. According to some psychologists, it’s nearly impossible to overcome a negative first impression. 

An exhibit design should reflect your company’s goals and objectives for the show, while also creating a glowing first impression. 

Open Spaces

Utilizing open space makes your exhibit seem larger and more inviting. Removing barriers helps create a better feng shui and creates a flow for people coming in or leaving. Potential customers want to feel free to walk in and out of the exhibit, not be confined.

Standing out from the crowd

At a trade show, you'll be competing with dozens (or even hundreds) of other companies selling similar products and services. The design of the exhibit should showcase your company in an appealing way. With only a few seconds to sell your brand, clear and concise graphics are critical if you want to appeal to potential customers.

Good customer service gets remembered. Make sure all of your reps make eye contact, smile and invite guests into your exhibit. Make them feel that they are welcome. Listen carefully to what they have to say and then repeat it in your response. This lets them know you’re listening.

Experiential Marketing

Experiential marketing is the art and science of forming memorable experiences and emotional connections with customers; it generates excitement and brand loyalty which can influence purchasing decisions. Immerse your audience in the benefits of the goods or services your company offers. Experiential marketing can include the following cues: 

  • Visual: This refers to the spatial and physical design of a room or location, a trade show display or even a museum exhibit. It include graphics, lighting, animation and use of colors & space.
  • Audial: This includes sounds that create positive vs. negative reactions. Think of waking up to gentle bird song versus a siren.
  • Tactile: Tactile includes touch and haptic (vibration) responses.
  • Olfactive: Smells, like the aroma of warm cookies elicits a positive reaction in most people, compared to the negative reaction of burnt popcorn.
  • Gustative: This includes the positive reaction to a sweet or savory taste, vs. a negative reaction to a sour or bitter taste.

Case Study for a Fictitious Bread Company: The San Francisco Bread & Grain Company

This case study demonstrates the "If, Then, What" cause and effect, showcasing diverse stimuli and their payoff.

The San Francisco Bread & Grain Company wants to introduce its new line of homestyle sourdough bread at a food show for prospective distributors and customers. Their display is designed to mimic a cozy, family bakery. The shelves and counters are lined with packaged products on display and “fresh” bread loaves are laid out on racks behind the counter. Visitors are offered free samples of warm, “fresh from the oven” sourdough bread. A toasting device (disguised as a brick oven) warms the bread and provides the unmistakable aroma of baking bread. Visitors are then offered a pre-packaged mini sourdough loaf before they depart.

The Result: 

  • If: People smell the warm bread they will likely be attracted to it (smell)
  • Then: They follow their noses and find a cozy, family-style bread shop (visual).
  • What: They’re offered free samples of warm bread to eat (visual, smell, touch & taste) and sample to take with them.

It’s a trifecta of positive vibes.

Attractive and inviting booths are more effective at drawing attention to your exhibit. After all, it's their first impression of your company and it's what will draw them in to it. Once they're there, treat them like you would like to be treated. Above all, be welcoming and genuine. People can smell a sales pitch a mile away. You can create your own trifecta of positive experiences if you plan well for your exhibit.

Schedule a free, no obligation consultation with a Nomadic Display Specialist and let us help you plan out the perfect trade show experience.