Top 5 Tips for Effective Trade Show Booth Graphics
Your trade show booth is a marketing tool that delivers your company’s message. If designed well, the graphics in your booth will amplify that message, leading you to a successful trade show.
Here are five tips to consider when designing your graphics.
Tip #1: Limit the Amount of Information to 3 Basic Elements
A trade show floor is filled with competition for attention. Show attendees are on information overload. Make it easy for them to connect with your message by making it clear and concise.
Have your graphic communicate only three things:
Who you are. Your company name and logo.
What you do. The one thing you want people to remember.
Why they need you. Communicate solutions to their problems.
Tip #2: Spend Time Developing Your Messaging
The ‘why they need you’ messaging might be the most challenging to develop. Spend time here because it’s potentially the most essential message you communicate. Focus on your ideal customer and speak to them.
Talk to your sales staff to identify keywords that resonate with your prospects. Then develop messaging that answers the question, “what’s in it for me?” Leave the details and company jargon out of your messaging and save them for the in-person dialogues. You’ll likely have a lot of these if you nail your messaging!
Tip #3: Optimize the Layout of the Graphic
Layout plays a significant role in the success of a graphic. Layout refers to the arrangement of elements in a graphic, including images, text, and style. This is where a graphic designer comes in. They are skilled at arranging these elements so a relationship and visual hierarchy form between them.
An optimized layout of a trade show graphic should satisfy the following:
Messaging is visible from at least 10 feet away
Messaging is not blocked by in-booth furniture or people
Attention-grabbing, ideally emphasizing people photos over product-only photos
Tip #4:To Perfect Placement, Put Yourself in Your Prospects’ Shoes
Depending on the size and design of your booth, you might have multiple graphics that are displayed. Graphics tend to fall into the three main categories below. Consider which messages you want to show for reach range.
Long-range graphics: such as a hanging sign, tower, or column graphic meant to be seen from very far away.
Medium-range graphics: placed 10-50 feet from an aisle, these graphics are meant to be seen from neighboring exhibits to lure people into your booth. Ideally positioned at or above eye level.
Short-range graphics: mounted at eye level and read from 1-10 feet away. These graphics are used to communicate a message to attendees inside your booth.
Tip #5: Use Typefaces to Maximize the Effect of Your Messaging
Typography is all around us. The beauty of fonts is that they can transform the written word to express an entire range of emotions. A skilled graphic designer can pair specific fonts to your messages to facilitate an emotional response.
Much like using color in graphical layouts, there are rules of thumb for using fonts:
Avoid using multiple fonts in the same graphic. Ideally only use one.
Make font size 1 inch tall for every 3 feet away the attendee is standing. For example, if a graphic is meant to be read from 6 feet away, the type should be 2 inches tall.
Think about the most successful graphic you’ve ever used in a trade show booth. Why was it successful? Did it satisfy any or all the tips mentioned in this article? Please share your experiences in the comments below.