Category Archives: Events

Global trends in retail

There’s probably no other industry that is going through as much evolution right now as retail. Customers are demanding more and more in terms of store layout, payment options in store, customer engagement and staff knowledge.

Retailers need to stay ahead of the game and the bigger players must predict the next trends in order to create a future for retail beyond online shopping.

At Brandstand, we provide a broad range of solutions perfect for the retail environment, including in-store sampling and demonstration solutions, as well as merchandising units and systems.

Let’s take a look at the four global retail trends set to dominate the retail industry over the next couple of years.

 

#1 An immersive customer experience is king!

Retail is becoming increasingly digitalised with physical retail stores embracing technologies such as virtual reality and augmented reality. These are no longer sci-fi dreams, but real experiences delivered in a real retail setting. This innovative technological approach takes a customer’s buying experience up a notch!

Nike has now taken a multichannel approach to retail. Customers can look at shoe styles in-store but then use interactive kiosks to customise their style choices. Once purchased online, the order is then delivered direct to the customer, with order processing monitored through their smart phone.

Take a look at IKEA’s AR catalogue below which allows customers to visualise how certain furniture will look inside their homes! This is a brilliantly delivered cross-over between an in-store and digital experience.

#2 Unique in-store experience

As online shopping continues to grow, the need to create remarkable in-store experiences has become more pressing. A new buzzword “Retailtainment” is now gaining ground as a way to combat the juggernaut of online ordering.

Brands are using retailtainment to create a point of difference and maintain their place in the market.

We see luxury brands, like US fashion designer Rebecca Minkoff, using smart walls attached to fitting rooms which enable shoppers to browse for sizes and/or products – as well as order a champagne! We clearly need more of this in New Zealand! It would be easy to see these solutions as gimmicks, but note that this creative retail strategy resulted in a 30% boost in sales, with customers reportedly requesting additional items as recommended by the smart mirror – not such a gimmick after all!

 Brandstand’s Smart Screen/Touch Screen solutions can be programmed to deliver a whole world of solutions, including champagne delivery! With in-built camera options, NFC capabilities and a range of sizes and mountings, perhaps it’s time to talk to us about changing your retail space.

 

Smart_Screen_Solutions

Some retail kiosks are also changing the game with nifty dispensing machines in place. One notable example is Sprinkles Cupcakes which has “cupcake ATMs” at its stores. People craving something sweet during the wee hours don’t have to wait for the store to open – they can just head to the nearest cupcake ATM machine, swipe a card and instantly get their fix!

#3 Pop up shops are big winners!

Pop up shops may have been around as a niche concept since the 90s, but still prove to be popular amongst consumers! The great thing about pop up shops is their appeal to customers with a ‘here today, gone tomorrow’ concept, thereby creating a sense of urgency. The pop-up shop operates on a sense of scarcity and so places pressure on the customer to purchase. The idea is to bring a certain blend of seasonality and creative experience to what can otherwise be a boring mix!

Interactive pop-up experiences like IKEA’s Breakfast in Bed Cafe in London, for example, opened for three days and allowed customers to enjoy breakfast in a snuggly bed – for free!

pop-up-breakfast-in-bed

Concepts like this gain not only press coverage but generate incredible amounts of social content, shared amongst many.

Brands like Nestle have also discovered the power of the pop-up store, seeing it as a tool to raise brand awareness. Known as the The Kit Kat Chocolatory, this pop-up shop allowed customers to customise their own KitKat, made fresh to order, with packaging that customers could design themselves!

If you need some help in bringing a concept to life then talk to our production experts in Brand Productions. They have years of experience creating experiential and retail solutions, turning concepts into commercial reality.

#4 Self-service technology

Otherwise dubbed as the ‘Help Yourself Technology’, these self-service technologies are popping up everywhere in retail! From McDonald’s self-order kiosks to self-service checkouts at supermarkets, retail stores are now expected to bring more convenience to customers.

We see Amazon’s physical store providing a futuristic approach to customers, where shoppers can just walk out without the long queue to pay. Shoppers simply swipe their Amazon app upon entry then their smartphones track what items they leave the store with. These are then charged back to their Amazon Prime accounts.

Customers want to shop fast at times but they also want to slow down and be entertained at other times. How can retailers win? One thing I think we can all agree on… don’t make us queue!

Let’s talk

Delivering great retail experience doesn’t have to be a hit or miss approach. As leaders in the display industry, we make sure your brand delivers the best experience possible to your audience. So get in touch today, and we’ll show you want we can do.

Global trends to watch out for in 2018

The events and exhibition industry is a rapidly growing and competitive market. Every year we see new technology being developed and new display solutions being created, all designed to appeal to attendees.

Looking ahead to 2018, we’ve highlighted four global trends that we think you should look out for:

  1. Virtual Reality

Virtual Reality (VR) has definitely enhanced the experience perspective – and will continue to do so in the upcoming year.

Boursin Virtual Reality

According to the 2018 Global Meetings and Events Forecast published by American Express Meetings and Events, the use of VR will continue to create a level of advancement in the way attendees interact at exhibitions and events. The incorporation of this immersive technology may come as no surprise but still draws major excitement and will continue to change the way attendees interact at events. In New Zealand we are seeing more and more articles published on VR, so it is clear that it is THE tech talking-point of the moment.

  1. Hybrid Events

You’ve probably heard it already – hybrid events succeed on virtually every level.

In 2018, hybrid events are predicted to make an impact on the end-to-end delivery of event communication.

Furthermore, the “live” in-person event with a “virtual” component has become extremely valuable in deriving greater reach and participation, valuable data collection, and cost effectiveness at events. The big tech companies do it very well, but now the technology is available to other companies, combining several comms channels into one event.

  1. Engaging the Apps

Mobile apps may have emerged years ago but their usage at meetings and events continues to evolve.

Along with other technology innovations, mobile app usage is extremely effective in transforming the way event owners and attendees communicate, inform and engage with each other. In 2018 mobile apps will go from a nice-to-have to a must-have. They have proven themselves in improving attendee engagement, sharing agenda details and facilitating networking among attendees.

  1. Wellness

Enhancing attendee experience is not limited to having fun activities on your exhibition display. A 2018 Global Meetings and Events Report also forecast Wellness as an emerging trend to watch as we move into the New Year.

An increasing number of companies are now looking to appeal to attendee wellbeing throughout meetings and events. This trend is predicted to be seen more in hotels around food and beverage offerings. Meeting and event owners also take this emerging trend as an opportunity to differentiate themselves and focus on healthy lifestyle and work with purpose.

Wherever you are in your planning for events in the upcoming year, these global trends indicate how much advances in technology impact the whole industry. It’s always important to create a meaningful engagement with your attendees, to stand out on the show floor and get noticed.

At Brandstand we are always updating our display solutions to accommodate these changes and to keep our products fresh and new. We offer a broad range of interactive solutions that help to give attendees a more immersive experience. Our range of inflatable products deliver a portable display solution that gets noticed – it’s fresh thinking combined with design flair.

 

 

 

Exhibiting on a Small Budget

It’s easy to become simply wall paper at trade shows as each exhibitor tries to out-do one another with bigger budgets, bigger stands, and bigger gimmicks. What can the smaller, more budget conscious exhibitor do to ensure their stand still cuts through all the clutter of the exhibition hall and creates an impact?

Exhibition Walls

This is a really economical way to create a stand, using our off the shelf fabric stand solution. There are a couple of walls to choose from; the SuperWall and the Tower Fabric Wall. Both are simple to erect and deliver some of the most vibrant, spectacular graphics we’ve ever seen. There are loads of options and accessories so you can start small and then add to your stand as your business grows and your needs change. There’s no doubt that impactful graphics stop people in their tracks, so it pays to invest here to get a good solution. The beauty of fabric is that it lasts years and can be washed, so it looks like new every time it’s used!

Brandstand NZ - Superwall Exhibition stand

Our graphics-2-go panels are a great solution that can be applied to your existing carpeted exhibition booth walls. They are easy to assemble with no tools required and with a full colour graphic display they look great.

Portable Exhibition Kits

Brandstand 0 Ultimate Expo KitOur portable exhibition kits are lightweight, portable and infinitely flexible. You can build your stand by using a combination of our portable display banners, walls, towers, pedestals and tables. All these components can be re-graphiced giving you a different look at each event without busting your budget. You can even build the stand yourself, saving time and reducing on-site contractor costs.

Sky Banners

Brandstand Sky bannerThese give your stand extra height because they’re suspended from the ceiling above your stand. This ensures your stand is visible from a long way off in a crowded exhibition hall. They’re available in various shapes, including square, round, and triangle. Consider a single message or how about different messages on each side?

Hire vs Buy

Always a tricky subject this one. If you’re only going to exhibit once, or you’re just dipping your toe into the water, then it’s a good idea to hire initially. Although most of our solutions are for purchase, we do have various exhibition solutions available for hire – just ask us for details.

If you attend more than 2 trade shows or events a year, then it pays to purchase your gear, treating it as a CAPEX expense and depreciating the cost over 3 years or so. We’ll happily run through the numbers with you and compare the costs of rental vs purchase, so you make the most cost effective purchase, not just for now but for the next few years.

Flags & Pull Ups

Brandstand NZ - BannerstandsNo we’re not talking about nappies here, but rather ways to gain attention for your business well before visitors enter the exhibition hall – cleverly positioned flags and/or pull up banners can get visitors considering your business and even actually making a bee-line for it as they enter the hall. For a couple of hundred dollars these can be a really cost effective way to stand out. We also tend to find that once purchased these items get used for many other roles within the business, and our customers wondered what they did without them, previously!

Interaction

Creating a buzz around your stand is easy if you include some form of competition or interactive element. Consider a game on your stand with prizes, or how about a simple business card draw using a competition/ballot box. We have a huge range of these available, from budget solutions right through to powered, bespoke entry boxes. As well as acting as a conversation starter, it all provides a simple way to quickly get the details of visitors to your stand and enables you to correspond with them in the future. By counting the cards, you will also be able to decide how cost effective the show was for you in terms of visitor numbers.Brandstand - Create a buzz

At Brandstand we have the knowledge and expertise to make the perfect stand for your budget, so give us a call on 0800 10 99 88.

The Superwall Display System has arrived.

Our new Superwall Display System sets the benchmark in flexibility and portability. Finally, create the stand YOU want and imagined without the constraints of a modular system and magnetic graphics panels. Now you can have any shape you want, any height you want and any graphics you want. All your display needs can be catered for in one system.

Brandstand NZ - Superwall

 

The SuperWall display system has arrived and is changing the way we build and create display stands. Remember how you used to have to match up the panels on your display walls to get them all straight? No longer necessary. Remember how you used to worry about scuffing your panels and how expensive they were to replace and keep clean? No longer an issue. Remember how you used to have to work your design into the panel system you were buying into, and when you turned up at a conference, all the others stands looked similar? Not any more.

We ‘re so confident in the construction of these stands that they all come with a 5 year hardware warranty.

Brandstand NZ - Superwall Exhibition stand

5 Reasons to Choose the SuperWall Display System

There’s 5 reasons why choosing the Superwall Display System is the sensible choice.

Brandstand NZ - Superwall Iconsuper lightweight

The future of large affordable marketing displays is here.

The Superwall Display System is built with simple and lightweight aluminium tubing that’s incredibly strong. It’s also a snap lock system so no need to drag your tool box with you! Over the top of the tubing goes a wrinkle resistant polyester fabric graphic print. This is unobtrusively zipped into place in order to get tension all around the fabric. The end result is a flat, wrinkle free look that really stands out from the crowd.

All the display elements are supplied in a heavy duty bag, so it’s easy to transport and simple to keep all the parts together. And if you trade up to a hard shipping case, then the case actually doubles as a branded podium too!

Being so lightweight also means these display stands are unbelievably easy to put up and dismantle. It literally takes only minutes to snap together the frame and then pull over the fabric sleeve.

In the old days your spider frame magnetic display wall weighed around 40kg, but with the New Superwall Display System, that’s more like 10kg! That means cheaper freight, easier installation, and a whole lot less stress!

Brandstand NZ - Iconsinterchangeable machine washable fabric graphics

Get that brand new look every time.

The Superwall Display System uses fabric graphics panels which can be washed after every use; they’ll still look fresh and new, even after a year of use. Literally pull the fabric out the bag and throw it in the washing machine on a cold wash. Or better still, take it down to the laundrette for a service wash!

Because they’re fabric, repairs and small nicks can be repaired easily and quickly by us.

Brandstand NZ - Iconsenvironmentally friendly

Exhibition and eco friendly

Be happy that the System you’ve chosen is as environmentally friendly as possible.

  • it’s lightweight and easily transportable, cutting down on freight costs and your carbon footprint
  • it’s printed using a dye-sublimation process which is recognised globally as the most eco-friendly printing process
  • it’s washable and re-usable year after year, so your small carbon footprint is at least spread over many years of use
  • we light up your stand with low draw LED lights

Brandstand NZ - Superwall Iconflexible & modular system

A solution for all your needs.

In the past your imagination tended to be constrained by modular display systems, but those days are gone. Our new Superwall Display System features both off-the-shelf and custom options, so you can create anything you like. We simply cut and bend the aluminium framing to the shape you need, then cut and sew the fabric to that shape, before printing your graphics. Take a look at some of our recent case studies to see the limitless possibilities.

We have a huge range of off the shelf fabric components and options, so it’s easy to find the right solution.

  • various wall sizes and shapes
  • various counter sizes and shapes
  • single or double sided print options
  • various LED lighting options
  • storage case options which double as counters or podiums
  • multimedia display options, with integrated TV mounts and iPad display options

Our fabric graphics panels can all be printed on both sides, so no need for your stand to be shy and stand against a wall! Enjoy the freedom of exhibiting in the best areas, not merely the areas that are suitable to your stand design.

We all know things change over time, so when you need to change out some of the graphics, we simply print the fabric again, ready to fit over your existing framing. It’s a really cost effective way to invest in a stand, but keep the content up to date and fresh. Check out our special offer too!

Brandstand NZ - Superwall Iconhigh impact graphics

You want your display stand to stop people in their tracks, you want it to make an impact. The new Superwall Display System is one of the most impactful displays we’ve ever seen, and here’s why.

  • the panels and walls can be made very tall, so you can own your stand space
  • we have the option to use flat or curved walls, or even create a bespoke finish, so you can fit your space effectively but also differentiate yourself from your competitors
  • all the stand elements you use are consistent in look and feel, so the overall effect is stunning
  • the fabric printing process we use is simply incredible, so your message really pops out
  • the wide choice of lighting options mean we can deal with even the trickiest of venues

The Choice is yours.

The SuperWall Display system consists of an incredible range of items, shapes and sizes. Take for instance our Display Walls. You have the following options available to you:

Corners – choose from radial or square corners

Top – choose from curved or straight top edges

Shape – choose from s shaped, concave, convex, extra long, or simply straight.

If we look at complete exhibition solutions then you can choose from a vast array of set-ups and accessories. One solution provides many options because various modules that make up the full stand can be used in various ways.

The SuperWall system comes with perhaps New Zealand’s widest array of accessories, allowing you to build and integrate all the elements you need into your stand. Or relax in the knowledge that you can continue to invest and grow your stand over time, as your needs change, using a system that is consistent throughout all elements.

Just Imagine. A truly CUSTOM display.

The SuperWall System lends itself to bespoke creations. We can cut fabric and bend aluminium to create a very personalised, bespoke display, whilst still keeping it incredibly lightweight and easy to transport.

With the Superwall Display System we can create almost anything. So talk to us, show us what you’re after, and we’ll deliver it; on budget, on time and just as you imagined it.

It’s a simple journey, but an important one to get right.

first | We listen, and talk, and listen some more. It’s important to fully understand what it is your thinking of and what it is your trying to do with your display stand.

second | We brief our designers so that we can take all those words and turn them into a picture, because we all know that a picture tells a thousand words. We work with some amazing 3d designers to create our display and exhibition stands, because it’s important to understand the movement of people through the stand and the journey they are being taken on. 3d designers understand lighting, engineering and functionality, unlike a graphic designer.

third | We project manage the production, the graphic artwork and then the installation, keeping it all on time AND in budget.

We’d love to show you our stands and demonstrate just how amazing they are.

Call us now on 0800 10 99 88.

What are pop up & pull up banners?

Brandstand NZ - BannerstandsPop up banners, sometimes referred to as pull up banners or banner stands, are simple cost effective display solutions.

A long graphic sheet rolls up and down into a base unit. The unit can be easily transported and then the graphic rolled out from the base, when required, and held aloft.

Pull up banners are perfect for creating impact at any event because they’re inexpensive to buy and once up, provide high branding in a small amount of space. They work incredibly well, too, when more than one are placed together with complementary messaging. Because of the size, they can be used to fit any sized room and their portability means they can be placed anywhere.

Brandstand NZ - Heineken premier BannerstandsThese banners can be used outside or inside and are best placed in areas of high traffic flow to draw attention to your business, brand or service.

There are a number of types of pull up banners, with base units and graphic sheets made from differing materials. Prices vary dramatically but it’s often a case of “you get what you pay for”. At Brandstand, we stock a wide range of these pull up banners, which you can see here. We only stock pull up banners where the graphics panels can be easily interchanged and replaced. Our pop banners differ from many in that the build quality is far superior. They are commercial grade and designed to last. This explains why we sell our pull up banners with a 5 year warranty.

Anytime you wish to replace or update the graphics on a pull up banner bought from Brandstand, then we’re there to print your artwork quickly and easily, because we have your original sale on our database – we know the size you require and can provide the level of service you should expect from one of New Zealand’s biggest Display companies.

So let’s explore the different kinds of pull up banners available from Brandstand.

The Premier
Brandstand NZ - Premier Banner StandOur most popular banner stand is the Premier, because it’s commercial grade and comes with various options. Let’s see what makes it our biggest seller:

5 year warranty
Durable padded bag
3 width options – 500mm, 850mm and 1200mm
Any height option
Eco Skin option for actual banner, eliminating any curl and reflection
Easily replaceable banner
Lighting kit available

The Promo
Brandstand NZ - Promo BannerstandThis is our most cost effective yet reliable pull up banner stand. It’s super lightweight and is meant for infrequent use. It’s ideal for anyone that wants a simple, cheaper banner solution that will be used a handful of times a year.

There are various height and width options available. And right now this product is on special at $289.

The Express
Brandstand NZ - Express BannerWhen simplicity is key, then The Express is your solution. There’s very little hardware so the focus is all on your messaging, plus these can easily be placed side-by-side to create a cost effective display wall.

The Express is the lightest unit in the market, making it easy and cheap to freight around. Let’s take a closer look:

Lightest unit on the market
Comes with padded carry bag
5 year hardware warranty

Options Available:

Multiple heights and widthsBrandstand NZ - Express together
Eco-friendly skin to reduce curl and reflection
Velcro receptive options for easier change outs
Hire options
Lighting kits

 

The Icon

Brandstand NZ - Icon BannerAll we can say about this one is WOW! If you want to stand out from the crowd then The Icon pop up banner stand is the best option available in the market. It’s a fabric banner stand available in 3 shapes and 2 heights. The fabric stretches over a light aluminium frame which comes with a 5 year warranty.

Unlike any of our other banner stands, The Icon can be printed both sides and therefore doesn’t need to be placed against a wall. It’s a super lightweight product supplied with a durable bag. The fabric skin can be machine washed to look perfect every time it’s used.

Options Available:
3 shapes
2 heights
Shelving options
Catalogue display options
Lighting kits

Considerations

There are many, many banner stands on the market and many ‘deals’ to be had. We see many offers online and in our email inboxes. But we also hear about them from customers that thought they were getting a bargain. There are 2 potential issues with buying cheap:

  • The hardware fails through poor manufacture/engineering
  • The graphic skins reflect light badly or curl so the image on them fails to create any impact and becomes un-readable.

When you buy cheap from a ‘deal’ site, remember that it’s often hard to follow up and complain when the product breaks or disappoints. Often they’re simply interested in the sale, not the service. And this is where Brandstand is different.

Many of our banner stands come with a 5 year warranty and have stood the test of time with hundreds of happy customers. Our banner stands are offered with many, many options so that you get the perfect solution for your needs. With so many choices available on our shelves, we’re able to guide our customers to purchase the right solution, not simply the cheapest.

Give us a call now on 0800 10 99 88 or drop us a line for a free quote.

 

 

 

Campaign Focus | Fonterra Free Milk for Schools Launch Programme

Brandstand_Fonterra Free Milk for Schools Launch_image 1

Fonterra launched their free milk for schools programme last year, ensuring that all our children had the opportunity to get their vitamins and minerals from a daily carton of milk. The programme now covers 1,450 schools and 170,000 kids!  Fonterra’s activation agency, FUSE, assisted in pulling together a campaign, that included several regional launches heralding the programme being rolled out across New Zealand. Fuse and Fonterra engaged the team at Brandstand to design and build a custom made launch solution.

Each launch took place in a school hall, so the venue size changed all the time. Fonterra needed a solution that turned any sized hall into a Fonterra branded space with elements that would appeal to a diverse audience, including school kids, shareholders, politicians, community stakeholders and of course the nation’s media. As the launch programme was nationwide, the kit needed to be easily transportable and ultimately flexible, something Brandstand knows a lot about!

Brandstand Free Milk For Schools Launch Campaign

Flexible fabric display walls allowed us to manage flow and tailor messaging for each venue

Brandstand spent many hours working with the client and agency team to refine and agree the content and design of the kit. It had to be just right, given the diverse audience. To ensure transportability we used a complete fabric wall solution as this was lightweight and easy to set up. Using fabric walls also meant we could take ownership of the venue and brand an entire room, whatever size, by simply dropping panels where they wouldn’t fit. We could keep the walls looking brand new by washing them after each launch, another great advantage of fabric.

We included low level branded tables and used additional non-fabric graphic walls with cutouts so that kids could engage with our stand. We placed milk related general knowledge snippets on various key elements of the solution as it was important that we educated kids (and adults) about the goodness of milk! We knew that each launch would attract the nation’s media, so we included quiet Brandstand's fabric event kit for Fonterra's Free Milk for Schools launch programmespaces for interviews, along with a branded stage area to facilitate speeches and easy media coverage.

The kit was used for 6 events around the country, and was all packed into a small minibus. An installation team of 3 were able to set up and dismantle the kit in 3 hours, an important criteria because we had limited time in each school hall.

 

“This was a difficult brief for a high profile client and an even higher profile campaign. The solution needed to look good, be flexible, be quick to set up and be strong enough to survive around 1200 kids running around! I knew that Brandstand would meet the challenge head on and deliver a perfect solution. As usual, they didn’t disappoint.”

Jason Willis, General Manager, FUSE New Zealand

Brandstand's Free Milk for Schools kit - Photo wall to inspire kids

A fun wall to capture those photo opportunities!

 

Future trends in exhibitions & events

IAEE LogoIn 2013 the International Association of Exhibitions and Events shared their insights on the future trends that would impact the global exhibition and events industry. It makes for interesting reading, so we thought we’d highlight the best bits here, so you don’t have to read the whole thing!

Generations

Younger people are now organising and attending exhibitions,bringing with them an understanding of and requirement for newer technology and social media integration. The modern trade show has become a technologically advanced event, because exhibitors and attendees demand it.

Learning: Ensure a good generational breadth of staff on your stand to appeal to a more diverse audience, and thereby ensure you have different skill sets on hand.

Research, Data & Reporting

Big_data_cartoon_t_gregoriusWe all know that exhibitions deliver some great ROI statistics, but marketers are coming under increasing pressure to prove it, so they’re looking to exhibition organisers to qualify their ROI with attendance data and post exhibition sales metrics. Exhibitors need more information than they ever did previously before deciding to attend an exhibition, including attendee demographics and attendee post research findings from previous’ years. Exhibitors also need to capture data during events to grow the data pool available and provide additional insights and learnings. Learning: Ensure you have clear data capture processes on your stand, whether simple business card collection, promotions or more elaborate online, touchscreen solutions. Collect all the data you can from your own stand, as well as overlaying all the data from the organisers. We have several standalone iPad stand options and we can also build them into any displays, plinths or walls. Check out our other blog post featuring ways to collect data.

Technology

Technology could be seen as a threat to exhibitions as more companies invest in online Webinars to talk to their audience. Certainly exhibition organisers must now integrate mobile and cloud computing into their offering, with free WIFI a given but also having IT specialists on hand to keep everything running smoothly. Wireless apps have taken the place of paper in not only capturing information and but also engaging with attendees at the stand.

Learning: Make sure the event organiser has IT specialists around to assist with your set up. And if not, make sure you have an IT specialist as part of your set-up crew!

Social Media Marketing

Social media is already having a profound effect on business in general, and the same is true of the exhibition industry. Exhibition organisers must now leverage all the platforms as part of their exhibition or event planning, embracing ‘live’ twitter feeds to gather sentiment as well as marketing events through LinkedIn and Facebook. Video is growing in importance and we see cameramen and interviewers at work collecting footage for use by exhibitors and for upload to You Tube.

Learning: Use your social media channels and the event organisers’ channels to market your stand and your attendance at the show. Use these channels to provide a reason to come and visit your stand.

Year Round Communities

With the rise in social media, big events and exhibitions are no longer a once-a-year moment but have a voice and a brand presence throughout the year, participating in social media communities, offering their expert commentary and speaking as the voice of the industry they showcase just once a year.

Learning: Ask and research what the event organisers are doing throughout the year to market themselves and establish expertise in the market.

Experiential Trade Show

The ‘experience’ that attendees have at a show is growing in importance. Advances in technology enable exhibitors to provide ever more elaborate experiences, but as a consequence the event’s IT infrastructure becomes ever more critical. The ‘experience’ factor is moving from an art to a science, backed up by research and that all important data.

Learning: Consider what experience you will be giving your stand visitors. Will your stand be memorable and will it attract the right audience?

Non-Attendee Engagement

Non attendees represent big business for many exhibitions, and so they must grab content toGoogle-adwords-logo-1 share with those that couldn’t make it and continue to keep them informed through social media and email marketing. Investing in Google Adwords can uncover new audiences that were previously non-attendees.

Learning: Invest in Google Adwords to attract your audience and keep those that couldn’t make it informed.

Exhibitors

There is always a fear that as exhibitors move towards a more technology orientated stand, the need for and importance of face to face marketing will diminish. It’s important that exhibitors invest in the right people to manage their stands if they’re to deliver sales and ROI.

Learning: Don’t just ask for volunteers to man your stand, but choose the right people with the right qualities and then keep an eye on them throughout the event. Take a look at our blog article on staffing your stand here

Internet Connectivity

wifiEvent and exhibition venues will be measured increasingly on their IT infrastructure and ability to consistently service the growing needs of a techno crowd.

Learning: As an exhibitor, ask questions of the event organiser and of the event venue to ensure it can meet your needs.

The BIG question – to rent or buy your exhibition gear?

Brandstand_Buy NowClients often ask us if they should  buy or rent their exhibition gear – for many it can be a big investment and a tricky conversation to have with the company accountant! Exhibition stands can be one of the largest chunks of marketing spend, but unlike mass market advertising your audience is far more likely to make a purchase (88% of all visitors to any event are personally involved in buying the products or services on offer). Arguably then, your exhibition stand can provide the best ROI of any form of marketing.

Your ‘rent or buy’ decision really comes down to how often you think you’re going to use the gear once you have it. Renting is a great option if you’re only going to use the gear once and you’re dipping your toe very gently into the world of exhibitions. Generally, we find that renting is about a 1/3 of the buy price, so if you’re going to use the gear more than 3 times, its going to be the expensive option! If you’re serious about exhibiting and think you will be attending more than one show a year for 2-3 years, plus have other uses for certain items, then the value you’ll get from purchasing far outweighs the price.

Brandstand_Massey SuperWall fabric exhibition kitThe exhibition stand solutions we create for our clients tend to consist of a number of modular, component parts. Each component can be used separately or as part of the overall solution. This means it can be used in many different scenarios. Right now you might be only thinking about that big exhibition, but what about when you want to brand a small room for a sales conference, or have been invited to sponsor an event and want to make sure you have some good company branding?  Then you’ll be glad you bought that kit and have it on stand-by in storage.

Your stand solution could comprise of a wall, a branded table and some pull-up banners. Together they create an entire stand, but separately they can create a sampling table in-store, a pull up banner in your reception area and another for that sales conference. Suddenly your initial investment delivers real value when compared with several rental costs.

In the old days, exhibition gear took up a lot of space and was hard to store. Companies didn’t want the hassle, so they rented! These days the gear is completely different. It all folds down to almost nothing. Displays tend to be fabric and the sub-structures comprised of lightweight aluminium. They’re washable too so it’s easy to keep them looking brand new.

By purchasing a complete solution you can be sure you’re getting what you want, and what you need. Surely this is better than simply getting what is available at the time of your need? When you’re budgeting for an exhibition, consider the Rule of Thirds – a third on space, a third on build and a third on marketing, planning, hotels, staff costs etc.

In our experience rental gear can often look a bit tired – it’s sent out week after week, getting bashed about, dirty and scratched. Is this how you want your brand to be seen? If cost is an issue, then talk to your display company about what you want and the budget you have – it’s a waste of everyone’s time if they try to sell you a Maserati when you’re only in the market for a Mini.

Let’s think about that company accountant again for a minute! Consider splitting out the various elements of your stand across various budgets – perhaps all the hardware can be purchased as a CAPEX expense, whilst the graphics sit under a marketing budget. And perhaps the stand staffing costs and lead follow up could be financed from sales, for instance.

By purchasing your stand we can help you stand out from the crowd – we can create a complete solution that includes bespoke elements that sit perfectly with other off-the-shelf items. You’ll know that your stand is a one-off – is unique, just like your brand and offers your audience a more unique experience.

Lighting up your world | event lighting tips

 

There are some that say proper lighting can increase awareness of your stand by 30-50%. Remember that  that the shell-scheme lighting that comes with your stand package is usually pretty basic and intended as a starting point; it’s unlikely to differentiate your stand from the others. Many exhibitors overlook the importance of lighting, but imagine going to a theatre only lit by fluorescent lights, or to a rock concert with only a couple of down lights. Lighting makes a huge difference.

Well thought out lighting can be a very effective way to help increase traffic to your stand and ensure your message is clearly expressed. Use it to highlight key messages and displays, but also use it to add atmosphere. In a crowded, competitive exhibition hall you’d be surprised how much impact you can create with good lighting.

Top Tip

Don’t judge your lighting by looking at your stand from 10m away. It’s better to get in there, walk around your stand and actually experience it.

Tricks of the Trade

Using angled light boxes at the entrance to your stand can attract people in to your stand. Using coloured lights can often create a certain aura or tone that separates you from the other exhibitors, whilst also re-enforcing some of your brand messages.  Consider a chilled, ice product that uses lights with a blue hue to convey their story.

Your decisions around lighting should be made with your audience in mind. A young crowd will expect a more daring approach compared to an older, more traditional audience. But beware sensory overload – you don’t want to drive people away after you have worked hard to draw them in!

Types of Lighting

We found some really useful tips from Kaitlin Colston, on her hello endless.com blog,  which we’d like to share with you.

Spotlights

Spotlights are brilliant for providing a focus on key messages and drawing attention to products. Use them to create a ‘hero’ element within your stand whilst also creating light and shadow thereby giving visitors a more

dynamic and dramatic visual experience.

Soft Lamps

Use soft lamps  and more ambient light sources when you want to create a warm inviting atmosphere, that encourages your visitors to relax and talk.

Up-lights

Use up-lights to create atmosphere and provide some perimeter lighting to create depth and interest. If you have a colour theme, then consider using the up-lights to emphasise and compliment your theme. Up-lights are an effective way to create that ‘WOW’ factor.

Gobo’s

A gobo is a beam of light with a metal stencil over it that creates a pattern. They can project any pattern or design or company logo. Project gobo’s onto walls, ceilings and floors to add visual interest and create a dynamic atmosphere.

 

 

Light shows

Grab attention with a light show where a number of lights constantly move or flash in a repeating sequence. This can be a dramatic way to herald an awards ceremony or speeches – a dramatic way to quieten a crowd and build excitement.

 

Electrics and Current Draw

Working out your electrical needs can be really hard. You’re expected to know what you want when you book your stand, but things change and you may need to make changes when you enter the exhibition hall. Suddenly everyone’s talking amps and volts and none of it seems to make any sense! At Brandstand, we understand lighting and we understand electrics. Let us help you define a lighting scheme and then work out how much power you need on your stand. Our service-led approach means we can complete the paperwork for you and work with the exhibition organisers to ensure your stand is perfect.

We have a full range of LED lighting so we can reduce your amps consumption and keep the on-site electricians happy. We also stock a wide range of other lighting options to make sure we create the effect you want.

 

 

10 Tips for Eco Friendly Exhibiting

eco exhibiting with BrandstandHopefully everyone understands the importance of taking care of the planet we live on, in order to guarantee a wonderful future for our kids, and their families. When you’re buying household goods, most brands will jump in and tell you they’re eco-friendly at the very first opportunity! Now that makes life much easier – you can make your buying decisions quickly.

But how about when you’re buying goods for your company/business? Do you care as much then about being eco-friendly? Do you feel the pressure to buy cheaply or do you know that saving the planet is the last thing your boss cares about?

Its really hard to do the right thing sometimes, but we’ve put together a few tips on how to make sure your exhibitions, events, conferences and trade shows are as kind on the planet as they can be.

Tip #1 | Materials

Take a look at the materials being used in your stand construction. Often fabric displays like these are much kinder to the environment as they require fewer processes in their production and the material itself is often more natural. We also use recyclable aluminium in our framing and extrusions. At Brandstand, we’re upfront about our eco commitment and you’ll find details here

Tip #2 | Graphics Printing

dye sublimation fabric prating process

This is how it works

Make sure the graphics printing is ‘dye sublimated’. Not only does this process create more realistic, more impactful graphics, but the process is also more eco-friendly because it uses heat to vaporise the dye and permeate the surface it is covering. There are no VOC’s (volatile organic compounds) which are often associated with solvent printing and the inks are water-based. This infusion also means the dye fades much less than in other processes. So basically, it’s a win win situation!

For more detailed information on this, take a look here.

Tip #3 | Stand Waste

Think about the waste you create on the stand and how it is disposed of. Are you serving drinks and nibbles? Consider eco friendly cups, disposable bamboo plates and cutlery too. Take a look here for more details.

Tip #4 | Staff Uniforms

It easy to forget about the uniforms that your stand staff might be wearing. Try to source eco-friendly gear that uses natural fibres. And if it’s being printed, consider the process used. It may be better to embroider, which is kinder on the environment, lasts longer and often looks a little more ‘premium’.

Tip #5 | Re-use

When creating a stand solution, think about the future and how elements might be used in different ways at other events, conferences, trade shows etc. This means you get the very most out of your investment. Many of the exhibition systems these days can be fitted together in different ways to give you heaps of display options. At Brandstand, we always ask lots of questions about what you need now AND what you need in the future so that we can provide a solution that works for a number of different occasions (and perhaps not just the one you’re thinking about right now – it’s called ‘customer service’ ).

Tip #6 | Reduce

Find clever ways to get your message across, that don’t use paper. Giving someone a leaflet has a pretty low engagement factor so why not get them to a touch screen so that they interact with your brand. How about a QR code on a business card, so they can research your product later? If you must use leaflets, then print on eco-friendly stock wherever possible.

Tip #7 | Freight

reduce freight costs

Light stands are easier to move around!

Big heavy stands take a lot of fuel to move around! The new fabric exhibition systems are really light and can be packed down into small bags. This means that your staff can transport the gear in their cars rather than adding a freight truck into the mix. Less fuel, less cars on the road, less chance of your gear NOT turning up!

 

 

Tip #8 | Lighting

We all know what a difference good lighting can make, but consider LED and low energy lighting solutions which not only deliver great effects but also suck less juice. This means your stand requires less load, and the event electrician will have a smile on his/her face!

Tip #9 | Suppliers

Ask the event organisers about their eco policies as well as the companies that are supplying your stands. How do they work in their own production facilities? How do they dispose of waste in their warehouses and production facilities?

car pooling at exhibitions to reduce carbon footprint

Fill a car!

Tip #10 | Car Pooling

No doubt you have various people working on your stand. Encourage car pooling by limiting the number of parking passes you give out. Less cars on the road, less fuel – it’s all good.