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First, since she has come some distance to see a number of specific exhibits, chances are she is looking for a familiar name or logo. Don't disappoint. Display your logo prominently near top of display. That way it will be as visible as possible above heads of people standing in front.
The same goes for your "primary product message". Try to boil your product or service down into one or two words that you can focus on. This could be a product logo, especially if it is well known and easily identifiable. But it could also be a two or three word phrase — much like "keywords" used in web pages. If you can't think of anything creative, then just take your primary product and stick an adjective in front of it (or a short phrase behind it) that gives it some "zing"...like this...
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The objective is to keep it near top of your display, on one, or at most, two lines, where it will get maximum exposure.
So that takes care of top 1/3 or so of your display. The rest should be devoted to enhancing or illustrating "primary product message". Forget about using lots of copy to actually tell people about your product. If show is successful, you will spend most of your time blocking view of your display, and prospects won't be able to see it anyway.
That means you should find one or two large striking images and integrate them into a colorful background. The best designs often use just one large image. In our design section we offer some suggestions and show you some possible layouts.
The important thing to remember is that people are not going to walk up to your display and start reading information on it. That is why a "graphic" approach is much more realistic than an informational approach. If you are considering sticking a bunch of information-intensive graphics on your display because you think that will give you more communication bang for your buck, forget it. It won't. The situation, environment, and motivation are just not right for this to happen. You PopUp is a very specific kind of "bilboard", and it should be treated that way.
When copying or reproducing this article, or parts of this article, please give appropriate credits to Richard Hendershot, www.tradeshow-display-experts.com
Rick Hendershot is marketing manager for www.tradeshow-display-experts.com. The parent company, Canada Display Graphics, has facilities in Mississauga and Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, and ships trade show displays and custom vinyl banners across North America.