Very few trade show attendees equate going to a trade show with having fun. This creates a tremendous opportunity for exhibitors to stand out—and increase memorability—by designing a trade show exhibit experience that elicits a few laughs and smiles.
What does fun look like on the show floor? We’ve pulled together seven of our favorite examples to share with you:
1. Garden of Life at Natural Products Expo West (NPEW). This exhibit has now been retired, but for four years, Garden of Life charmed natural products enthusiasts and buyers with its larger-than-life ode to organic gardening. Attendees experienced “Honey I Shrunk the Kids” for themselves as they met in the watering can conference room and hid from the four-foot honeybee. (Exhibit design and fabrication 3D Exhibits)
2. Google at Consumer Electronics Show (CES). The Google experience at CES followed the standard theme park attraction four-part format of pre-show, queue with teasers, attraction, and post-show. During the queue/teaser phase, Google set the tone for what turned out to be an actual ride with humorous copy and 3D versions of the whimsical characters who’d be the stars of the experience. We especially liked the way a variety of sizes of tennis ball were used to convey that the ball is in motion and the dog is chasing it. And the ironically heroic copy drew either a chuckle or eye roll from everyone in the queue. (Exhibit design and fabrication by Sparks)
3. Elevation 3D at EXHIBITORLIVE. Elevation 3D brought a smile to attendees’ faces by reinforcing its “Listen” message with a wall covered with ears. This visual articulation of the message made sure that even people who never read signs got the message. It certainly would have captured Vincent Van Gogh’s attention. (Exhibit design and fabrication Elevation 3D)
4. Arm & Hammer at International Production and Processing Expo (IPPE). They say pets and their masters often look alike. The same seems to be true for poultry nutritionists and their chickens. Arm & Hammer’s graphics showed an alarming resemblance between one of its animal nutrition scientists and a chicken. Of course, this chicken was wearing glasses. And this nutritionist was wearing a scarf to match the chicken’s comb. Regardless, it was hard for anyone to walk by without noticing these graphics. (Exhibit design and fabrication internal)
5. Justin’s at Natural Products Expo. Snack food is fun—so it’s appropriate that a snack food booth be fun, too. Justin’s came through with a booth that appeared to be covered in nut butter to promote its new nut-butter-covered nut products. (Design inhouse, fabrication by Condit Exhibits)
6. Waterloo at Natural Products Expo West. Waterloo’s mad scientist’s lab stood out from the other, more traditional exhibits at NPEW. Highlights included lights with pipe for conduit and a colorized video of Waterloo’s “manufacturing process” that borrowed imagery from classic film Young Frankenstein. (Exhibit design and fabrication by Cruising Kitchens)
7. La Croix at Natural Products Expo West. Fans of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade were thrilled to see the supersized product inflatables
sailing over La Croix’s exhibit. The whimsical positioning of the colorful balloons reinforced the message that the La Croix brand is young, unexpected—and
fun. (Exhibit design and fabrication by Empire Display)
How do you make your trade show exhibit experience more fun?