Monthly Archives: February 2014

Life’s a Game – Let’s Play!

Game play, often referred to by marketers as gamification,  has become part of our everyday lives. Brands  are embracing the use of online games to drive further brand engagement. Traditional Media spaces like bus stops and billboards are going digital and inviting you to play and interact with them.

Here’s a neat way to turn the mundane into a game!

The more brands can get consumers and shoppers to engage with them, the more likely they are to link that brand with positive memories, talk about the brand to others and finally perhaps purchase that brand.

The same is true in the conference, exhibition and event space. Everyone wants you to engage with them – its not longer enough to simply wander through an exhibition hall and read various static panels. Your stand needs to draw in the passer-by, and we don’t just mean a gentle pull! Once there, that person needs to have something to do.

So what are your options?

Simple yet impactful TV screens

Simple yet impactful TV screens

#1 The simplest solution is probably a large screen playing interesting content – it’s better than nothing but its not exactly unique!

#2 Consider using a iPad or tablet device on your stand so that people have to press the screen and make choices in order to learn about your brand. These apps are now  simple and inexpensive to create.

#3 Social Sharing has become very popular, so perhaps set up a themed photo kiosk and invite people to have a humorous picture taken and then share it.

#4 A competition that relies on skill, perhaps a Playstation game where people compete to win prizes by getting on the leaderboard. This is a great option because those not playing can watch others compete and those competing can really engage. To take it one stage further,  there are various companies that have created games which can simply be re-skinned with your branding making it more unique to you.

Classic Spin&Win, always fun and engaging!

Classic Spin&Win, always fun and engaging!

#5 A competition that relies on chance, like a spin to win board or even a simple business card draw. This normally creates a little fun and engagement and is less threatening for some than a competitive game!

Effective and simple - the business card draw

Effective and simple – the business card draw

The great thing about most of these options is that they also  provide a simple method to MEASURE attendance/engagement at your stand. You want to be able to prove the ROI you gained from attending an event and these methods provide irrefutable numbers.


Even if all you end up doing is giving away a free coffee, at least count the cups in the bin, or turn the bin into a game and ask people to vote on something with their cup!





Striking gold at your next exhibition

5472747612_4ed8cc8d45_zSometimes in life we’re guilty of over-complicating things, and then we can’t see the wood for the trees. We often have clients approach us with complicated briefs, so we start by going back to basics. There are really only 2 considerations when creating an exhibition stand.

  • How to attract people to your stand?
  • How to engage with people at your stand?

So, let’s begin with Attraction! Think about what attracts humans to each other and then convert this to the exhibition environment.

How many times have you heard people say they are looking for a good sense of humour in their partner? So, entertain your audience somehow with perhaps someone on a mic, invite a celebrity along or introduce some kind of game on to your stand.  Over the years we’ve created plenty of interactive elements for our clients (take a look at this case study for instance). Think about how you can get people to stop and smile.

Of course, a good looking person can stop us in our tracks, so think about the design of your stand. Make it look good, make it spectacular and it will then be attractive to your audience. Be bold and innovative to stand out from the crowd. But don’t then play hard to get! Make sure it’s easy to then get into conversation – that’s the engagement bit we’ll come on to! For a quick overview of some great designs, take a look at our Pinterest boards here. Brandstand has 16 years’ experience in designing exhibition stands.

Its customary these days to ‘Go Dutch’ on your first date. The same goes at your stand. Be generous with your time, and be generous in sharing your expertise. Your audience is looking for proof that you are an expert. Sometimes its too easy to think you’re giving away something for nothing, but you need to not be so short-term in your thinking. Have plenty of staff on your stand so that you can spend time with people. It takes to time to gain trust and loyalty, just as in any relationship. Consider running workshops and seminars at the exhibition to attract your audience.

Somehow, you need to impress your partner on that first date. It might be the clothes you wear, it might be the car you drive or it might be the place you take them. The same goes for your stand. Have a gadget or two that impresses them and makes your stand different. Create a little fuss and suddenly everyone wants to know what all the fuss is about! A great video can sometimes cut through the clutter, so think about a screen which people can look at without feeling an obligation to buy your products.


Nice glass of wine on your date?

After that initial attraction, we need to continue to interest our partner. We need to want to spend time getting to know each other. Here’s some ideas to consider on your stand:

Drinks – every date starts with drinks somewhere, doesn’t it? At an exhibition, it provides a talking point and often a much needed thirst quencher – its thirsty work walking around an exhibition! Take a look at this link for some amazing latte art.

Seating – because walking around an exhibition all day is tiring on the feet. There’s many a potential client who’d love to sit down and talk to you, if only to take the weight off their legs!

Staff – everyone needs their happy face on, and everyone on the stand needs to know your products/services. You only get one chance at this, don’t blow it with grumpy people who don’t know what they’re talking about! To learn more about staffing, read this article

Brandstand| Assa Abloy

Competition at the AssaAbloy Stand

Competitions and tasks – get visitors doing things on your stand, not just looking at your products. Their experience should be sensory in many different ways. Think about moving visuals, think about touch screen tablets, think about getting people to leave their business card, think about getting people to scan a QR code. Give people a Call to Action, not a Reason to Leave.


Time to get sorted

After a great Christmas, it can always be hard to return to work. The early part of the year is a good time to cover off a few of those admin tasks that we didn’t get around to last year. One great job for early in the year is to look through all that marketing collateral you have stored away. You’ve been busy buying pull up banners and teardrop flags from us, but where are they now? Are all the bits still in the bag? Is anything looking a bit tired after a year of use? Its a good idea to begin an audit of all your materials and look at what state each item is in.

Of course this can be done manually using a clip board and pen. It can even be done using an Excel spreadsheet (and we love a good spreadsheet here at Brandstand, believe me!). All of this though makes the job harder than it needs to be.

The team here at Brandstand have been reviewing a few of the Inventory Apps available for download to tablet or phone. Honestly, they’re all pretty amazing. By using an App, you can categorise items, add quantities, photograph them instantly and also add notes about what condition each item is in. This way you can create a full inventory document for others to utilise when they need to pull out some items for an event.

Some of the Apps available are pretty complex allowing for barcode scanning of each item etc, but we like to keep things simple and not waste money unnecessarily.

So, why not check out Stock Control. Its a free download to simply trial it, but then you’ll need to purchase the full version to input more than 15 items. It’s amazingly simply to use and allows you to instantly input each item, add lo

cation details, categorise it with various options and then link the item to a photo you take on the spot. Its a powerful feature packed app.

Another App we like is My Inventory Manager Pro. It has a nice dashboard and is really easy to use. Again, there’s a free “lite” version but you’ll probably need to upgrade from this pretty quickly. This one is also available on Google’s App Store.

So, get organised this year with an up to date inventory of all the event collateral you have, and get in touch if you need to replenish stocks – we’re here to help.