Exhibiting at a trade show is an excellent way to connect face-to-face with your customers and prospects. As with any event, there are a myriad of details to attend to and tasks to complete. One of the first of these is to select an exhibit house that complements your style, provides the type of service you require and can operate within your budget. Below are five considerations to bear in mind as you search for the right exhibit partner for your company.
Your experience with your exhibit house hinges in large measure on your relationship with your account executive. Before selection, ask what kind of relationship you can expect to have, including how accessible your AE will be during the design and build process and during the event itself. Whenever possible, determine whether your work style meshes with that of your potential AE. If you are driven and detailed and you have an AE who is more casual in their approach – conflicts could arise. Ask how issues are typically addressed. In what way will the AE keep you abreast of the build progress and communicate with you on an ongoing basis? A little homework ahead of time can help ensure that you select an exhibit partner which has an AE with whom you can establish a successful working relationship.
According to EXHIBITOR magazine’s Rental/Refurb Survey, more than one-third of exhibitors use rental exhibits for some or all of their shows. There are many reasons to consider renting. These include staying within your budget, being able to try different types of displays, avoiding storage and maintenance fees, or you may just be a new trade show participant and just want to test the exhibiting waters. If renting is the route you will likely choose, be sure that your exhibit house has an inventory of rental displays and components and the expertise to tie the elements together to create an impactful exhibit that reinforces your brand.
Of course, budget is very important when selecting an exhibit house. Exhibit builders should be able to tell you if they routinely stay within the allotted budget. If they repeatedly go over-budget, there are some questions to be asked. Did the client make changes after approvals, or did the materials cost more than anticipated? Why did they go over the budgeted amount? If the builder went over because they failed to estimate the project correctly, you need to be careful and watch them closely. You should be asking for cost updates as the project progresses.
Transportation of trade show exhibits can be costly, making storage options a significant factor in the selection of an exhibit partner. Some questions to consider include whether warehousing is available and if the exhibit can be stored in a central location. For some, it may also be important that the exhibit partner is able to provide a space where a client can preview the exhibit or check on the progress of the build. Before moving forward in your exhibit house selection, make sure you have a full understanding of the warehousing options for your exhibit.
When you have selected a few exhibit houses to enter the RFP stage, the most important thing to keep in mind is that they all get the same information. You will need to compare them equally, so make sure you line item out each major category. Give them a brief description of each part. That way it will be easier to compare the different vendors and make an educated selection.
Exhibit Systems prides itself on personal service and works with customers to meet their needs – whether it’s providing custom exhibits or rentals. We have online tools to keep projects on track and prices in line. If you would like to learn more about what we offer, click here to contact us. If you are interested in a quote, click here.