"exhibit"

Best Buy & Future Shop - Connected Homes Summit & Tradeshows

It has been great to see all the tradeshow and training elements come together for the Connected Homes Summit in Niagara Falls this week.  Our designers, carpenters, crews and graphic production staff have been working on new pieces for the Microsoft Canada team and it was great to finally see some live photos from the convention centre today.


Octanorm Design Contest 2013 - a recap

Every two years Octanorm Canada hosts a conference for partners who use the German display system.   They introduce new extrusions & displays, present improvements they have made, host round table discussions, and also a design competition.

The rental booths (and some purchased ones) that we custom design for our clients are built using this German display system.  Unlike your traditional shell schemes provided by show contractors, most of our exhibits incorporate both rental and custom elements.  Unique laminates, custom millwork and customized lighting solutions, give our rental booths a look and feel that sets our clients apart from other exhibitors.

Here are some of the designs we submitted for 2013. 
We won for the 'Exhibits under 400 sq. ft.' & 'Exhibit over 1000 sq. ft.' :

For entries from previous years feel free to visit the Octanorm website: Design Contest.




Interior Design Show 2014 - a special preview

As I predicted - we were not disappointed at the Interior Design Show (#IDS14).  The morning was spent along side design students, interior designers, and other industry professionals - all excited to see what the show had to offer this year.

Some of our favorites were the BigFoot Door booth, the Solo Home exhibit and the 'experience' at the Miele Booth.  I was also blown away by some of the beautiful lighting, rugs and furniture some of the smaller and more independent designers brought to the show.  I found myself stalking the Reed Hansuld booth because of the beautifully crafted chairs he showcased (yes....chairs).

Here is just a small collection of what inspired us today:
(images are also on our INSTAGRAM @exhibitcanada)

Moving on up - 5 tips on how to move from your portable to a custom exhibit

We receive a lot of calls from exhibitors who want to make the jump from their draped table to a custom designed booth.  Some already have bannerstands and pop-ups but are looking to make more of an impact and stand out from their competitors.  Here are 5 tips on how to move from a portable to a custom exhibit.

Staging your home? Staging your exhibit?

I often visit the Houzz site and love looking at beautiful homes, but I often wonder how those owners keep their amazing spaces neat, tidy and free from clutter. Of course most of these houses had interior designers hard at work and it got me thinking about an article I just saw posted by Freshome Design & Architecture; it was about home staging and the impact on the sale of your property.

With Toronto's housing market booming the way it is - I have experienced first hand what a difference it makes to stage your house for sale.  I'm not only suggesting for you to clean your home but have a design savvy friend help you de-clutter your space, rearrange furniture, or even go out and hire a professional stager.  Home buyers will not be able to look past all the 'junk' at the beautiful woodwork, the great pot-lights, or the beautiful kitchen.

I believe the same applies to exhibits.  I started to think about what booths we have done where staging played an important role in making the product or messaging stand out.

I want to share two examples.  The first is Microsoft's 'Home' exhibit for a Future shop event in Whistler.  They had asked us to help create an environment, that not only provided some space for a trainer to talk to a few attendees, but also allowed them to showcase their products in a 'home' setting.   This booth was very different from our usual 'corporate' exhibits and even though we did not go the traditional route of building a small scale house - there was still a lot of staging going on!

The second example I found (and we can't take any credit for the staging!!!) is from Mucci Farms

The first set of images were taken after our installation crews set-up the booth:  you have the carpet down, the exhibit structure up, the lighting, graphics, AV and rental furniture ready for the show.

You can see from the 'before' and 'after' that the booth is fairly plain until all their produce is showcased throughout the space.  The greenhouse vegetables are so vibrant in colour and the Marketing Coordinator did a fantastic job incorporating their product into the staging of their exhibit.   Cushions, vases, bowls, and other accessories were used to complete the look.

 I guess staging is not strictly for your home anymore!

If you want some tips on styling or staging your home (or even exhibit) - you can read the article

"Why Home Staging Could Give You The Edge in The Property Market"

Renting an exhibit - still a popular option

I have this conversation a lot with clients: Why should they rent their exhibit?
Because it makes sense. Not for every exhibitor and not at every event - but in many instances I see our clients benefit from renting instead of buying their exhibit.

We created this advertising piece below (it was a double sided card - so the text below is the back). It summarizes the key reasons for choosing a rental booth.

In essence - it's about flexibility and making your show budget go further. At least that is how I like to look at it.  

Gone are the days when Marketing Managers had 'unlimited' trade show budgets like in this custom exhibit with intricate mill work at the 1893 Chicago World Fair.

1893 Chicago World Fair - Michigan Exhibit (Source:PeriodPaper)

Today we are still focusing on cutting costs, economical solutions, minimizing expenses, and maximizing your show R.O.I.s (while still trying to impress your attendees with an amazing booth!)

We have seen many clients go from a 600 to a 200 square foot space, and vice-versa.   This may be a result of changing Marketing budgets and because they invest in different sized spaces at different shows.  Add another dimension, that these shows don't happen every year, and now what do you do with a booth purchase that only fits the space for one of your four events?

Almost all our clients change their exhibit from one event to the next.  Even if it's just adding seating or a meeting room, changing the layout, enlarging the storage room, or changing the size - you can always make improvements to your booth and I like that a rental exhibit gives you this type of flexibility.

Unless you know that you will be using the same booth, in the exact same configuration for at least 4-5 shows, consider a rental exhibit.  If there are some core elements that can be used at every event and in every size configuration look at a hybrid solution (a combination of custom purchased components + rental components). 

Hybrid solutions give you a little more customisation and unique elements within your rental exhibit.

A lot of our exhibits are a mix of custom elements (purchased) and rental components, like this 20'x20' exhibit we designed for Pure Hothouse. The glowing pedestals, dimensional lit letters, and graphics were custom/purchased components and most of the structure is rented.  That is why you can also see a 10'x20' concept in which a combination of custom components and rental structure is used.  For the 10'x20' they only rent the exhibit structure they need instead of carrying the cost of the full 20'x20' version.

Pure+Hot+House+FINAL+4.jpg

I am sure we will come back to this rental discussion over the lifetime of this blog and even though I can appreciate that a rental exhibit is not the right fit for every company I think renting a custom designed display will continue to be a popular choice.

Setting up Microsoft's 'Shadow Box' booth

I am excited to share the installation video of Microsoft's 'Shadow Box' exhibit!  

This video was filmed using time lapse and took almost 1600 photos in a span of ~ 8 hours.

Two 10'x20' custom designed walls made up this 20'x20' booth. 

Although the columns in the venue made it difficult to find a good spot for the camera - we were able to capture the set-up of one of the walls. 

It took a crew a full day to install the carpet, exhibit structure, signage, lighting, AV and one day later it was all dismantled again.  If you every wondered what it takes to set up an exhibit here is an example:

Microsoft 'Shadow Box' exhibit Installation