There’s so much noise out there in the world of events that you can hardly hear yourself think. Exhibitors, speakers, event organizers and attendees, all with their own goals, agendas and approaches. With everyone trying to connect with others and grow their customer bases, you’re bound to get swallowed up if you go with a typical approach. Despite the odds – and the deafening roar – we’ve figured out the secret to grabbing attention. Allow me to explain…
The Middle is Death Valley
When marketers and business owners think about their exhibiting strategy or their next trade show concept, they usually straddle the middle. What is this mythical middle, you ask? It’s an invisible line between two disparate ends of the boldness spectrum. One on end, you have clean, minimalist designs and simplicity. On the other end, you have edgy, daring designs and abundant creativity.
So, the middle is neither. It’s a depressing valley between those two peaks, where good ideas and products go to die. Morose? Maybe. Exaggerated? Nope. True? You betcha. Most companies will stay in this lane because they think it’s safe. They’re too scared to get truly adventurous, worried about alienating their audience if they’re not perfectly politically correct. Or, they’re uninspired by going totally the other way, concerned that a minimalist approach will be unappealing or fall flat.
But the truth is, the middle is far worse than either of these. And if you want attention – which you should, since that’s kind of the point of events – you’ve gotta stick it to the middle.
Reflect on Your Brand
If you’re thinking this over, and starting to see the light, let’s talk specifics. How do you know which approach you should take? Well, there are a few considerations to keep in mind. First, take a good, hard look at your branding. I don’t just mean your color scheme and preferred fonts; I mean your actual brand identity. What matters to your customers? To your industry? What makes your business unique? What’s your brand’s personality?
If you lead a wellness company and have always maintained a playful tone and humorous messaging, it’ll be more natural for you to swing to the edgy end of the spectrum. But if you own or manage a cybersecurity business, it’ll almost certainly make more sense to ride that pendulum all the way over to the minimalist side. Whichever approach you choose needs to fit with your brand’s identity and goals, so it will resonate with your audience and not feel discordant or “off.”
Consider the Competition
Next, take a look at your competition. We’ve all taken a peek at our rivals while we’re exhibiting at the same event as them, and let’s be honest – probably taken notes. Maybe Competitor A’s booth design was snooze-inducing, while Competitor B’s was confusing and drowning in text. So, think about your booth standing next to them. What would make you stand out? In this example, it’d be by going the bold AF route. Think psychedelic colors and splash paint.
But, if your competitors are all surfing the same wave of tongue-in-cheek messaging and innuendo-laden graphics, you need to flee in the opposite direction. Go minimal. Use conversative copy and clean designs. Focus on nailing the whole “less is more” vibe.
With these factors in mind, make your choice. Are you going big and bullishly pursuing the outermost fringes of creativity and fearlessness? Or are you deciding to scale it back, opting for a classy approach that entices and intrigues? Either way, you’re bound to set yourself apart and get more attention than you would by remaining stuck in the dry, hot, God-forsaken middle.
It’s time to take chances, while keeping your company’s objectives, branding and competitors in mind. Go big or go bare – or else, seriously, you might want to just pack up and go home. Here is the article on Exhibitor Online.