Author Archives: Jason Willis

Immersive experiences are the future of branded experiences and brand events

Once upon a time, brand experience meant little more than handing out some branded lollies, using models dressed up in branded tees, or talking to customers about the brand by telling a quick story.

However, with increasingly demanding consumers in an increasingly crowded marketplace, that’s simply not enough any more. Consumers are demanding more from their favourite brands – they’re happy to let brands into their lives but want to be rewarded with unique and special experiences.

With technology helping brands take their consumers on a more interactive and engaging journey, the marketing process has ramped up a notch. And, as the global augmented reality market is expected to grow to a whopping US$117.40 billion by 2022, as per estimates released by, immersive experiences are expected to become increasingly powerful.

So we have what marketers and experiential agencies are calling ‘the immersive experience’. It’s next level experiential and greys the lines between reality and fantasy. For years, marketers have been delivering compelling customer experiences, but now they add technology and the internet to deliver Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality experiences where the brand takes over the entire customer environment. Print media, television and the internet provide a two-dimensional experience. An immersive experience gives the audience a sense of actual presence, which completely transforms the experience. Consumers become a part of the environment with the ability to react to events they encounter.

Virtual Reality Experience

Much of this new focus is fueled by Millennials, who give preference to experiences over products, according to an article in They spend money on experience-related purchases. This has driven the experience economy, and brands are increasingly focused on turning ordinary products into experiences so they remain interesting and relevant to a new set of consumers.

Being bombarded with advertisements used to be a way to cut through but people have learned the art of avoiding them. We seem to have developed a ’built-in Adblock’, says an article by ScribbleLive. Immersive storytelling offers something novel and lets one develop unique stories and environments to attract and engage prospective customers.

Let’s take a look at some recent examples to demonstrate how an immersive experience can be different. 

Mamma Mia! The Party

The world of Mamma Mia! delighted yet another set of viewers over the summer with the release of Here We Go Again. Now, that world has been recreated in none other than London’s vast O2 arena. Adapted by Sandy Toksvig, Mamma Mia! The Party invites participants to step into an island paradise, eat top-notch Mediterranean food and listen to live performances of all the best ABBA numbers. It brings the films to life and allows people to actually spend an evening within the movie itself, almost.

Immersive Experience
Source: Mamma Mia – Immersive Experience

Refinery29: 29Rooms

For about three years now, lifestyle brand Refinery29 has hosted the 29Rooms event: what it calls ‘an interactive funhouse of style, culture, & technology’. As the name suggests, it consists of 29 individually branded and curated rooms – and attendees can experience something different in each one. The rooms are designed and created with brand partners, who range from personalities like artists and musicians to consumer-facing companies like Dunkin’ Donuts, Dyson, and Cadillac.

Immersive Experience
Source: 29 Rooms – Immersive Experience

Each year, 29Rooms has a different theme, with this year’s being Turn It Into Art. Attendees, it seems, are encouraged to enter each room and use the surroundings to create something – one room, for instance, invites participants to put on punching gloves and hit punching bags that each produce a different sound when contacted to create a symphony of sorts. Take a look at the video HERE

Converse One Star Hotel

The Converse ‘One Star Hotel’, executed with high production value, saw Converse create a two day pop up in Shoreditch, London. The hotel focused on presenting an engaging line up of fashion, music, sneaker and skate experiences for Converse’s audience and influencers. The activation was an ‘Instagram playground’ and brought the Converse story alive for the highly engaged Gen Z target audience, increasing the brand’s overall reach and effectiveness through UGC (user-generated content).

Every touchpoint of the experience was highly considered and played up to their rebellious personality. But importantly, their products sat at the heart of the activation, with sneakers influencing rooms with their style, usage and colour.

Source: Pinterest – Converse One Star Hotel

If you are looking to create a consumer experience and need some help with display and event production, we would love to hear from you. Please give us a call on 1300 240 250 or contact us HERE.

What do you want to get out of exhibiting?

Are you planning to show your business at an exhibition or event? It’s a brave step and certainly not one for the foolhardy. Take a moment and think about it – is your business really ready?

Exhibition objectives - Brandstand

Before you even think about selecting banners or putting together any marketing material, you need to identify your exhibition objectives. This is where you take a step back and think about the results you want to accomplish at the end of the trade show or exhibition. Write them down, keep them to hand, and ensure you refer back to them at the end as part of your measurement and success criteria. Perhaps you want to meet new partners? Attract more leads? Generate media attention? Raise awareness? Launch a new product/service?

Whatever the objective, understanding your goals is key – not only to the success of the exhibition, but also to keep you and your team on track throughout.

Why is it important to set exhibition objectives?

Setting exhibition objectives delivers focus and ensures everyone understands why you are at the exhibition in the first place! It defines your purpose and helps determine the outcome of your event. Most importantly, it helps avoid wasting valuable resources – like time and money. A good understanding of this is crucial in order to predict and effectively measure your exhibition’s success.

How to identify your exhibition’s main objective:

Here are 5 of the most common exhibition objectives:

#1. Get NEW Customers

This has to be one of the most common objectives and is often the key reason to attend an exhibition. Face-to-face selling, or the ‘art of conversational selling’, is still one of the most effective ways to sell a product or service. The personal touch has all kinds of advantages over mass medium channels like email, TV, print and even online marketing. The logic is simple. When face-to face with a prospect, salespeople can easily read reactions in real time. Prospects can ask questions and the salesperson can answer and address any objections about a product or service as soon as they are raised. This forms a connection between the brand and the prospect in a way that opens doors for further communication.

If you want to make this your exhibition goal, then you will need to create some pre-exhibition awareness to make the most of the event. This can include things like:

– Leveraging your social media channels by making announcements that you’re going to participate in a trade show.

– Send emails or personalised invitations to people you think might be interested in your service or product.

– You can also even place ads in relevant websites or magazines to get more people interested and talking about it.

Make sure your team is suitable for the purpose – do you have the right staff on the stand for delivering conversational selling? Have you taken the time to prep your exhibition team on how to behave on-stand and agreed ways to approach your audience effectively?

Exhibitions can and should be busy. You have a finite time to interact, so have a plan in place to capture as many people as you can. Consider your interaction. Perhaps you will have some people stopping passers-by, and then others focusing on more in-depth discussions with warmer leads.

#2. Launch your Service or Product

Perhaps you have an extraordinary product/service that you’d like to introduce to the market? Keep in mind that the trade show floor is saturated with other brands, so if you’re going to go for this objective, make sure your marketing materials are attractive enough to gain attention. Things to think about:

– Make sure your exhibition stand has impactful visual graphics.

– Think about using VR or AR to provide product demo or presentations.

– Offer free trials or samples.

– Make sure your product benefits are clearly outlined.

– Have enough people on the stand to demonstrate and answer questions.

– Be sure that visitors have take-aways to prompt them once home, and collect names and emails so you can continue marketing to them.

#3. Build Brand Awareness

Creating brand awareness and giving the customer an experience that they will remember, is a great objective to have. It’s all well and good generating sales and creating movement in your bottom line, but building brand awareness and making a lasting impression is what wins trust and loyalty in the long run. By creating an experience for the customer, they will not only remember your brand, but they will also talk about your brand to others and that’s a win-win for everyone.

– Use your stand to show what you stand for as a brand.

– Communicate what and who your brand supports, and how it delivers more than just a product/service.

– Add value to the interaction you have with exhibition visitors – avoid any selling and simply expand their experience.

#4. Find New Employees

Exhibitions are not just about gaining sales, they are also a great opportunity to meet new partners, competitors and, most importantly, new people! Exhibitions and trade shows can be used as a medium to spot potential employees and new recruits for your business. They are a great way to meet quality attendees in which you can spark an informal interview and then eventually invite these ideal candidates over to your office.

#5. Retain Current Clients

The final objective that many companies use exhibitions for is customer retention. It may sound strange, but it provides a great opportunity to rekindle relationships with current customers. So much of our business these days is online and we often don’t get a chance to meet customers face to face. By having a stand at an exhibition or trade show it not only gives you the opportunity to thank them for their custom, but also gives you a chance to update them on new products or initiatives. Plus, by having a presence, it also reaffirms your business credentials for the client and will hopefully help retain their business.

And Finally….

It’s really important to put your goals in writing. This is so everyone around you is clear about the objectives and so you can measure and manage your results effectively. Just be sure to keep your objectives as realistic as possible and you’re bound for success! If you’re still unsure and have some more burning questions that you’d like to get answered, feel free to send us a message at or call us at 0800 10 99 88.

Why sponsoring an event is a great thing.

When you sponsor an event you are expected to offer funding or products and services to support the event. Usually it makes sense to offer something that your company sells or a service you can provide.

When the Rescue Run approached Brandstand to sponsor their event we were delighted to help. The Rescue Run is an adventure race through Woodhill forest, Auckland. Teams of six people carry a stretcher through a 15km course that simulates different disaster zones including an earthquake, flood and mudslide. Each team raises money for a local emergency service such as Fire, Ambulance, USAR or Coastguard, and the money raised goes back to that particular charity and helps to save lives.

As Brandstand’s core business is all about signage and display systems, we knew we could help Mark and his team by providing all the corflute signs, inflatable displays, flags and helmets required for the event. We were also keen to take part and so, with much trepidation, Brandstand entered a team! By entering a team it not only shows commitment to your sponsor it also shows your support and enables you to become involved in the whole event.

Rescue Run - Brandstand

Here are 5 reasons it makes sense to get involved:

Brand Visibility

Sponsorship puts your brand in front of a large audience who may not have heard of your business. The bigger the event, the more press and social media you may get before, during and after the event. Make the most of this visibility and make sure your company shares posts regularly to get maximum exposure. On event day make sure that you get photographs of the event and images of yourself taking part as these are great to share on your social media page and website.

Rescue Run - Brandstand Flag

Consumer Perception

We all know that customers form positive opinions when a business is tied to a high profile event. Customers will automatically assume that your business is reliable and reputable just because you have sponsored such an event. A 2016 survey from the Event Marketing Institution found that 74% of consumers were more likely to buy products after exposure to a branded event. So make sure when you sponsor an event that you get maximum exposure on the day and have your logo visible for others to see.

Community Goodwill

Strengthening your business image is one of the most valuable benefits an event can give you. Customers love brands that care and that put themselves out there into the local community. It’s one thing to sponsor an event and another to actually take part. By sponsoring and participating in an event, you not only show goodwill in monetary terms but also in community involvement, thus helping boost customer loyalty.

Business Relationships

Making the most of other businesses involved in the event is a great way to form new relationships in a non-competitive environment. Make sure you attend any networking opportunities and talk to people at set-up and on the day as these connections could stand you in good stead for future work.

Content Strategy

Event sponsorship provides some exciting and fresh content for your website or social media pages. If you don’t shout about it then no-one will know, so it’s important to maximise exposure while you can. Before an event there will always be a build-up so why not run a countdown campaign and let your followers see what you are donating and how you are involved. Making a video of your efforts or posting photos not only sells your products but also shows your commitment to the job.

Post event is another prime time to showcase your company and get as much exposure as possible. Use imagery of the event and, if possible, get some video to share. If you have been raising money, make sure that you let everyone know how much you raised and where the money will be spent.

Sponsorship is something that every company should consider. Taking part shows further commitment. The Brandstand Brigade was a team of six individuals,all at different stages of their lives, but as a team we pulled together and had an amazing event. Here are some shots from the day. In total our team raised $3400.00 and this will be going to the Fire and Emergency Services.

Rescue Run - Brandstand Team        Rescue Run - Brandstand Team

Rescue Run - Brandstand Team        Rescue Run - Brandstand Team

The event as a whole was a massive feat, and the organisation and quality of the course was all down to Mark and his team who worked tirelessly day and night to get the course ready. In total the event raised $336,000 and this will all go to helping save other people’s lives.

The Rescue Run really was a fabulous event and one that Brandstand would love to be involved with again next year!

Introducing LEDGO and YOUGO, our new portable Brandframe displays

Trends in technology and materials change all the time in the display industry. As a business we pride ourselves on keeping an eye on the industry and bringing new display products to New Zealand. We would like to introduce our latest portable displays, LEDGO and YOUGO.

The rise in SEG displays

Globally we are seeing more and more companies using Silicone Edge Graphics [SEG], or soft graphics, to create super-easy to set up fabric displays. It makes sense, given that these fabric panels don’t need zips or other fastenings to maintain the stretch of the fabric. SEG display units simply have a silicone edge that inserts into an aluminium extrusion.

Let there be light

Display companies throughout the world compete to increase the impact of their displays, whether through new print techniques, bigger displays or lighting. The latter used to be expensive and often created light spots rather than a nice broad light distribution. With LED lighting came the opportunity to deliver a low draw, small footprint, even light distribution but at a cost. As demand has increased, so the price of LED lights has decreased. Some light manufacturers no longer even produce non-LED bulbs!

With LED lighting, display manufacturers are now able to deliver fully lit display solutions. These can be either mains or battery powered, and have the lights set into thin extrusion. This has never been better delivered than within the LEDGO, Brandframe display.


The future of illuminated display

Taking banner stands to the next level, these displays are lightweight, stable, stylish and, most importantly, easy to assemble. Consisting of just seven parts, they can be quickly assembled without tools – the perfect fast and simple solution to your display needs. Both options are surprisingly light with a display of 100x200cm weighing in at just 8.7kg! That means it can be transported in your carry-on allowance!

These displays are best described as a banner stand and lightbox, all rolled into one. They consist of components that can be easily configured for different display options and needs – be it for your Point of Sale display, at a tradeshow, as an advertising board or for customer traffic guidance systems. They can be displayed on their own or they can be used as a modular system making a much bigger display. As you can see below, several can be put together to create a wall. End panels can be turned 90 degrees too, depending on the look you want or the area you have to display in.

There are two options in this range, the YOUGO and the LEDGO. The basics of the product are the same but the LEDGO is an illuminated stand, featuring LED lights set into the frame and sitting behind the fabric. Both stands use pre-assembled base tracks for the frame and then a silicon lip graphic is fed into the edging of the frame to complete the display.

LEDGO Combined

LEDGO Display

The LEDGO product is an ultralight and brilliantly illuminated stand that uses high quality OSRAM LED technology to give an even and shadow-free illumination. Its LED lights are positioned inside the display, behind the fabric, lighting up your message for everyone to see. Perfect for events and tradeshows, or even conferences and dinners, where you can set up decorative focal points or combine several modules for larger, illuminated displays – both options allow you to create sophisticated mood elements, even in big rooms.


YOUGO Display

The YOUGO display is a non-illuminated display that uses the same high quality anodized aluminium as the LEDGO system. Not only is it UV resistant but the design and shape are very slim and timelessly elegant. With a meticulous finish, even the edges are pleasant to the touch and the connectors are almost invisible after set-up making it appealing from all angles. These displays provide exhibitors with a quick, easy set up that can be transported in your car or on a plane. This transportability makes them perfect for POS use, sampling and mobile advertising.

YOUGO Display System

Want more information?

Request a detailed product brochure by emailing: We would love to talk you through the options or even give you a demonstration in our Auckland showroom.

6-Step Checklist to Launch your Product like a Pro

Whether you’re launching a product or a service, the idea of a product launch can often be an intimidating and daunting task. There was a time when a company could easily hire a PR agency to craft a press release or set up a press tour – then presto, you could sit back with a martini and watch the hype roll in. Launching a new product was a fairly straightforward thing to do back then. But those days are gone and today’s pace of product news and launches has become an all-out warfare of brands fighting for attention! Yes, getting “published” is now A LOT easier but cutting through the frenzy of information – especially online – has become much more challenging than it used to be.

There’s a crazy paradox happening here: with a whole lot of options available when launching a product (think direct mail, social channels, online advertising), it’s become easier to reach your audience but it’s also become harder to make them pay attention!

At Brandstand we’ve worked with hundreds of companies and have learned from experience. A product launch entails a lot of checklists, and failure to succeed could kill a company. When it’s time to open the curtains and unveil your product to the world, it’s important to think through the different levels and processes needed to come out strong.

Below are six best practices and tips to help simplify a product launch and keep you on the right track.

  1. Understand your Goals

Your goals may include gaining new customers or hitting a sales quota – whatever it is, be sure to have a primary objective followed by a secondary beneficial outcome. You can start mapping out your goals by answering your Why’s: “Why are we launching this product?” “Why would my target audience want to buy my product?” You can even take this further by following the Five Whys approach, which has its origins in the Toyota Production system. This technique lays out a disciplined approach to effectively testing and evaluating products, features, and ideas – key to maintaining agility in start-up product launches.

  1. Know your Audience

This is a critical stage as this is who your marketing message, channels and promotions will be targeting. You need to figure out the demographics, interests, and behaviour of your target audience. Without this information, you’re likely hitting your target market blindfolded – which is the total opposite of what you want to do!

Defining your target audience allows you to hit the bull’s eye and authentically connect with your customers plus target them right where they are located! Once you have this in place, you can then plan your marketing accordingly.

  1. Get Customer Feedback Before and During Product Launch

Nothing compares to real feedback from real customers.

Once your product is ready, send your product to customers or influencers – invite them to test it out for feedback and product review. What do they think? What do they like? What do they not like? This is the first step to turning customers into product evangelists. While not every piece of feedback can be immediately acted upon, this can help identify the next steps for your product evaluation and evolution.

There are lots of benefits to this step which include (a) getting critical feedback before your product is launched to a larger audience (b) collecting influential product reviews that you can use later on for your marketing.

Holden, an automobile company, even went as far as paying social influencers to showcase the Cascada model on their Instagram pages, websites and social media channels – all as part of their launch strategy. As a result, Holden’s Cascada had the highest brand awareness result of any global auto campaign on Instagram in 2016.

Here’s an image used by Holden for their sponsored Instagram campaign. This features Holden’s brand ambassador model Alex Pendlebury and the Cascada.

Holden Launch

  1. Generate Buzz through Social Media

You’re excited about your new product. But are your customers excited?

From a countdown clock to sneak peaks and leaked photos, you can strategically release information about your product in the weeks or days leading up to the launch through social media.

Big brands now plan meticulously for every launch with teaser messaging and partial reveals of products posted on social media channels like Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, Instagram or Pinterest.

This has been true for car manufacturer Nissan. In the release of their new car model, Leaf, Nissan used teaser campaigns “Amazing things are worth waiting for” on their social channels to prepare the market.

Nissan Social Media

In this sample post from Nissan, the car brand shared a sneak peek of their new car model’s headlight on Twitter – it doesn’t look much when you look at it, but it’s enough to get the audience talking!

Speaking of teasers, another sports car maker, Aston Martin, also used the same strategy when it dropped teaser images online of its new model, Vantage.

Aston Martin Teaser Campaign

The image they published shows the Vantage under the drapes – which doesn’t reveal much except for the striking LED tail-light that fans have been eager to see!

Another notable marketing strategy from Aston Martin is the use of “leaked photos”. Spy shots of the Vantage model were circulating the news online even before the car brand dropped its official teaser images. As expected, the strategies implemented drew speculation and excitement from the audience.

  1. Make an event

An event can be in the form of a live social chat, Hangout on Air, live Instagram stories or an actual one which involves speakers and guests. Boost the event and invite influencers for a live demo of the product.

When Tesla launched its Model X in 2015, the brand sent out invitations of the launch and teased everyone with an image of the car having “falcon wing doors” – now that’s something!

Tesla Product Launch

When holding a live event, make sure to have an in-person element to effectively engage the audience. You’re bringing to the world the next big thing so be sure to give an audience a reason to go! Go big through creating a one-of-a-kind event experience with stunning displays or designs. Just be sure to have every detail of the event on brand.

Land Rover Launch

In this example, Land Rover set a spectacular show of creativity during its product launch in 2016. The launch made waves not only because of the big reveal itself but because the event features the world’s largest Lego structure! Pictured above is a giant LEGO replica of the iconic Tower Bridge. This resulted in an epic, show-stopping event that literally made history! Talk about ingenuity!

If you’re looking to set an amazing scene for your next event, we at Brand Productions can help bring your ideas to life! See some of our display and exhibition solutions here. Or talk to us today and let’s get the engine revving!

  1. Keep the Momentum Going

A product launch campaign doesn’t equate to getting things done in a day. In fact, a successful launch should generate interest and buzz throughout the year with major directional changes based on user feedback. Once your product hits the market, a lot of things are expected to happen – things can even go wrong – in which case a product launch becomes a progress instead of a one-time achievement. New marketing messaging, seasonal and key selling periods provide ample opportunities for a brand to keep people talking about the product.  

Evaluate results, keep creating content, work with influencers and press, and continuously engage with customers – these are the ingredients to keep your product hot and fresh even long after it has launched!

Keep Testing

The Bottom Line: effective planning and management is key to product launch success. It’s never easy but when done right, it’s a pretty exciting and fun experience!

What steps have you taken to launch your products? Learn more about Brandstand and Brand Productions and how we can help with any display and exhibition solutions for your product launch. Contact us here. We’d be happy to answers questions and talk you through different products, ideas and case studies.



Retail Trends for 2018

Retail trends are continually changing and consumers are always looking for the next ‘big thing’, whether it’s an experience or a product.

Personalisation and convenience are two major factors trending at the moment. Both are important to the consumer but one is all about enabling the shopper to build and customise their product, and the other is about making the buying process as easy as possible.

Let’s look at this in more detail:


A clear trend for 2018 is enabling shoppers to build and customise products. This does not simply mean putting someone’s name in an email, it means enabling shoppers to build products and customise them to the very last detail.

Take Dresden for instance. Dresden is an eyewear retailer that offers sustainable, affordable and locally made eyewear.  Dresden has revolutionised their retail experience by allowing consumers to create a pair of sunglasses according to their preferences. The consumers’ interchange frame parts and lenses then select their size and colour – all to fit their requirements.

Brands are finding new and innovative ways to infuse technology into the shopping experience across all channels. One US retailer uses augmented reality to deliver personalisation. Online furniture retailer Wayfair recently launched a new augmented reality mobile app that lets customers see products in 3D. Users can see how a couch or lamp would look within their space, and then make purchases straight from the app.


Convenience is a buzzword for retail this year, especially as more and more shoppers use mobile devices. Many shoppers research their products online with their mobile but then go on to buy from a different device, preferring not to input their data onto the small screen of their mobile. New one-step checkouts such as Apple Pay change all of this, allowing shoppers to research, select their product and pay all from one device – no more entering your credit card details online – payment is simple and quick!

Convenience is a key retail trend

Visual search technology is a growing trend to watch out for. Rather than a word-based search query, a shopper will be able to snap a photo of their desired product to generate relevant search results. Imagine, for example, searching for a little black dress with a specific hemline. If the keywords aren’t within the product description, it’s likely going to be a nightmare to find. But visual search can use a photo to quickly narrow down products, making it much simpler to research and then purchase.

Any focus on convenience must also look at delivery options. Amazingly 80% of consumers want delivery on the same day while 61% of shoppers need their packages faster, in fact within 1 to 3 hours of requesting an order. (Temando Research Survey). These stats prove that next day and same day delivery will become the new norm for both online and offline retailers, which is why Amazon has been experimenting with drone delivery.

All of these trends are on the rise and will be something we see more and more of in 2018. It is our belief that the real winners in the retail space will be the companies that offer the utmost in customisation, speed and convenience.

If you would like to explore how to apply these trends to your retail or event experience, then give Keiran or Rich a call on 0800 10 99 88.


Art of Fact – Innovators Case Study at MOTAT


We were approached by Art of Fact to help produce an exciting new exhibition space for MOTAT. They had just won a creative ideas competition to develop the exhibition space. The brief was simple – the exhibition space had to inspire the innovators of tomorrow with engaging stories of innovators today.

The Challenge

We had a large space to fill that had to not only captivate small minds, but allow them to be innovative in their thinking. There were not many objects to exhibit so we had to think laterally and design a structure that could tell a story, whether it was through creative artwork or through interactive media. The quality of the product also had to withstand its daily environment and be ‘tamper-proof’ given the audience that was viewing it.

The significant challenge for Brandstand was developing an exhibition space that was:

  • A fully flat-packable system for hassle free storage
  • A future proof system that could be re-configured into different layouts enabling it to be used again and offering long term value.

Innovators exhibition at MOTAT

The Solution

Brandstand worked with Art of Fact to deliver a full turnkey solution based on their design brief and then went on to install it within the ‘hall of fame’ space at MOTAT.

The exhibition comprised of a full Brandframe structure with both curved and straight modules. The custom curved frames were all rolled to specification and a full colour dye sublimated fabric skin was used over the curved and larger framework. A fabric skin option was chosen because it works well on curved structures and enables the exhibition to be seemless – giving it a stunning professional finish. Through dye sub fabric colour printing we were able to ensure colour matches with other elements of the exhibitions plus deliver text that was clear and easy to read. Being fabric, each wall could be stored and washed easily to remove marks, stains and the leftovers from sticky small hands!

The displays featured a digital element using large flat screen TV’s and a provision for AV integration which was mounted direct to the framework. The individual rooms used different colours, textures and lighting giving the audience a sense of change as they walked through the exhibition, enabling them to experience the different innovations on show.  

Each room was designed and created to be re-usable which allows MOTAT to rotate the featured teams in years to come giving a great return on investment.

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.



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!


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.




Is smart glass technology set to revolutionise exhibition stands?

G-Glass technology is built to give a high impact brand experience which is not only stunning but also dynamic and impactful.

A new product from G-SMATT Global could certainly change the face of exhibition stands in the future. The product itself is a media glass – where circuitry is etched onto the surface of the glass and then LED’s are carefully placed onto it. Cover glass is then installed, filled with resin and connected to the side of the laminate with flexible printed circuit boards. The end solution is a cutting edge glass wall that can display any content rich media that could be shown on a PC or TV, but on a far larger scale and in a much more compelling way.

Interactivity is key…

G-Glass can deliver innovative display solutions to any indoor or outdoor event. It has the potential to transform the way exhibitors connect with their audience, enabling the glass to be interactive with the stand. Add sensors to the exhibition floor, for example, and have these sensors connected to the glass wall which would in turn change the image. This not only keeps the imagery fresh but keeps people interested and engaged.

No restrictions

Rather than the traditional way of fitting a screen to an exhibition wall or stand, G-Glass allows exhibitors to create a full-length interactive exhibition stand that is as large or as tall as they want it to be, giving the exhibitor maximum brand presence. The screen becomes the wall!

Orhan Ertughrul, EVP for G-SMATT Europe says, “G-Glass could give you the opportunity to double your event footprint by standing containers on top of each other giving you more exhibition space at no extra cost. If you can build high, not only do you get the benefit of people seeing you across the exhibition hall, but you can double or triple your footprint”.

Keeping up with technology

This highly-interactive smart glass display is something that we at Brandstand are very interested to follow.

Not only does it provide a one-of-a-kind brand experience but it also allows brands to communicate and interact with audiences on a whole new level.

This technology is something that will continue to expand and that we believe will come into its own within the exhibition and display industry, whether it be on glass or inside the new fabric lightbox stands.

If you would like to know more about changes and innovation in the display industry, then
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