Tips and Trends

Ask 3D Exhibits: How Do I Make A Small or Two-Dimensional Product Stand Out in My Trade Show Exhibit?

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

We hear it too often. Brands say, “Our product just isn’t visually interesting enough to create a good-looking display in our trade show booth.” They tell us their product is too small, too flat, or too ordinary to do anything creative with. But we’re here to tell you that where there’s a will, there is always a creative solution. In fact, 99% of all physical products—even bolts and screws—can be arranged into a display that is both eye catching and memorable.

Learn from a design award recipient.

Marketers who want to showcase their products better in their trade show booths can learn a lot from Neenah Paper and Packaging. Neenah’s product is paper. More specifically—beautiful papers. The kind of papers that have saturated color and intriguing textures. The kind that feel really good in your hands and elevate a business card or annual report or sales packet from collateral—to art.

The challenge is that paper is, of course, two-dimensional. Flat.

Most companies would have taken flat at face value, mounted sheets of their product to the wall, and been done. But Neenah was too creative for that.

Instead, Neenah used its creativity to create a three-dimensional product display that was so outstanding that its exhibit won three design awards: The Stevie, The Communicator and The Astrid.



Neenah’s simple solution was to transform its papers into large paper flowers. They then mounted clusters of these paper flowers near the entrances to the exhibit. The stunning end result ensured that Neenah’s product stood out and demonstrated the quality and versatility of its papers.

How to apply this to your own trade show exhibit:

So how do you figure out something equally clever and appealing for your own product and trade show booth?

The best way to come up with a new product display technique is by brainstorming with your exhibit designer—or by conducting a team brainstorm/ideation session (our design and marketing teams are happy to help with that anytime you’d like).

Here are some questions to launch your creativity and get your brainstorming started:

1. Can you make your product into something dimensional or sculptural? Or make something three dimensional out of it?

2. Can you use your product as a building block to create something else?

3. Can you add props to your product to create a vignette that gives context or tells a story?

4. Can you make it into an artistic arrangement or grouping?

5. Can you transform it into a physical sculpture?

6. Can you make it into a mobile and hang it?

7. Can you add interest by adding color?

8. Can you make it more elegant by going neutral or tonal?

9. Will it stand out more if you recreate it bigger?

10. Can you tell the story better if you recreate it smaller?

How do you make simple products stand out in your exhibit? Send us an email, we would love to hear!


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