Studies have shown that trade shows are one of the most effective forms of marketing. In fact, 99% of trade show marketers have said that these events offered them value that could not possibly be
achieved via any other marketing medium. But, there’s no denying the fact that these events can also be very expensive. Participating in a trade show in Orlando, one of the most popular destinations for these events could set you and your business back quite a bit. Thankfully, there are ways in which you can manage your expenses effectively and still enjoy a successful event, without having to go over your budget. Here’s a look at some easy ways in which you can cut down your trade show expenses without compromising on the quality of your booth.
Remember, the Early Bird Gets the Worm
All trade shows will have a day when they open up registrations. It’s crucial that you’re one of the first few businesses to put your name down as an exhibitor. This is primarily because the first few slots may either be discounted or come with a few other perks – such as allowing you to choose where you’d like your booth to be located. But, in order to make the most of these early-bird offers, you need to make sure that you plan your trade show calendar well in advance.
A good tip is to mark out all the events you’d like to attend right at the beginning of the year. You can then get in touch with the organizers even before they start registrations to let them know you’re around and looking to participate in their event. Staying on their radar will cost you next to nothing, but could lead to much better gains in the future – especially if you can snag a big booth at a prime location for a discounted rate.
Weigh Out the Pros and Cons of Buying vs. Renting
Purchasing a trade show booth is a long-term commitment. It requires a significant chunk of your overall trade show budget and is not something that you can afford to purchase over and over again. If you opt to buy a booth, you will likely have limited options when it comes to customizing your display at future events. On the other hand, rentals come at a significantly lower cost and still offer you the opportunity to completely customize your booth.
If you opt for a rental over a purchased booth, you can head into every trade show with a completely new display, which gives you the chance to bring something new and fresh to each event. There are a number of companies that offer trade show rental displays in Orlando at competitive prices. What’s more, they’ll help you gain a better understanding of the trade show market and help you build a booth that’s trendy as well.
Learn About Fabric Prints
Tension fabric has taken the trade show world by storm. Fabrics are lightweight, durable, vibrant, and the end result is almost identical to direct prints. Plus, if you opt for prints on tension fabric, you won’t have to worry about requiring any special packaging while moving your booth from one location to the next. If you’re looking for a way to keep your budget down, you can opt for tension fabric graphics over direct print graphics as they’re easier to clean and will definitely last longer.
The only thing you need to do is make sure you get HD quality right at the start. Since tension fabric is quickly picking up popularity, prices are pretty competitive. You can ask around for a few quotes before you settle on the right printing partner for your needs.
Think About Going Modular
If you’d rather buy than rent your booth, you might want to think about purchasing a modular booth instead of a traditional one. Modular booths make a great long-term investment since they allow you to purchase a booth that you can reuse, but they’re easier to adapt and change for subsequent events. These booths allow you to play around with different booth sizes and configurations without forcing you to shell out money for a new booth every time.
With a modular booth, you can enjoy a good return on your initial investment. If you want to test the waters first, you can check with companies offering trade show rental displays in Orlando to see if they have any modular booths you can customize for your next trade show.
Sort Out Electricals in Advance
Most brands are so focused on how their booth will finally look that they forget to think about the electrical wires and outlets they need to hook up their projectors, TVs and other devices. What eventually happens is that these brands have to manage with last-minute changes that could easily cost 10 times more than it should.
If you’re looking for a way to cut down trade show expenses, then you need to make sure that you understand where your electrical devices and appliances will be fitted right at the beginning. This way you won’t have to worry about last-minute costs.
Embrace the Power of Technology
Fairly often, brands head to trade shows in the hopes of showing customers how their products and services can help them. In order to do this, sometimes large booths are required. But, the bigger the booth, the higher the cost.
If you think that you don’t have the budget required to splurge on a large booth, you can still show your customers exactly how your brand can be beneficial to them by using technology like Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR). With the help of VR and AR, you can show people exactly what your brand is about and what you can do for them, without having to set up elaborate demos on the show floor.
Don’t Rely on Onsite Services
While you’re setting up your booth, you may realize that you’ve forgotten to get your check-in tech or may run out of tape to keep your wires in place. While it’s true that you can get these items from your organizer or hotel concierge at the last minute, the fact of the matter is that services and items that you purchase from the venue itself are likely to be marked up quite a bit. Instead of digging into your pockets, make sure you plan everything properly so that you bring whatever you need with you.
If you aren’t sure about how to manage the installation, don’t worry. If you’ve opted for a rental booth, your rental partner will look after this for you. If you’ve tied up with a company providing trade show rental displays in Orlando, they will make sure that your booth is ready on time, without asking you to shell out excess money at the very last minute.
Select Your Staff Carefully
The people you choose to staff your booth could literally make or break your trade show. If you’re on a tight budget, you may not be able to hire trade show experts to help you manage your booth at the event. Thankfully, there’s a cheaper and better alternative. Instead of looking to hire trade show experts, who may not be familiar with your brand or offerings, you can ask people from your company to volunteer their time instead. This will serve two purposes.
Firstly, it will help you bring down your overall cost. Secondly, and more importantly, you’ll have dedicated personnel managing your booth, which will reflect incredibly well on your brand. If you’ve decided to take in-house staff with you, make sure you have a good mix of high-ranking decision-makers, product experts and sales personnel. Together, they’ll be able to answer almost every query your clients could have, which will definitely give you an edge over your competition on the show floor.
Find Your Own Accommodation
When you’re heading for a trade show that’s out of town, you need to make sure that you’ve accounted for accommodation and daily expenses as well. More often than not, brands choose to book rooms in the same hotel where the event is happening. If the event is not attached to a hotel, the hotels closest to the venue will get booked up quite quickly. So if you’re making your arrangements last minute, you could end up spending more than you had anticipated on accommodation for yourself and your staff.
You can solve this problem in two ways. Firstly, you could try and book your accommodation in advance, which should help you get a slightly lower rate. Or, if you really want to trim your budget, you can look for motels and serviced apartments in the surrounding area. These will work out much cheaper than any hotel room and will also give you and your team a well-deserved break at the end of the day since you aren’t likely to run into other trade show attendees there.
Heading to a trade show in Orlando doesn’t always have to be an expensive affair. With these helpful tips, you can maximize your budget and earn great returns on your investment.