Setting up your trade show booth for an event can be an intimidating process, especially if you don’t have much exhibiting experience under your belt. However, there are several preparations you can make to help ease the setup and assembly process. Here is a guide to successfully setting up your trade show booth that you can reference for your next event.
Get Details on the Booth Location
Ensure a smooth setup experience by first inquiring about your booth’s location. You may want to ask for a map of the showroom floor so that you can get a better idea of where you want to reserve your booth space. Try to find a location that is near high-traffic areas or near the entrance. Show promoters and staff can also tell you who is exhibiting near your potential spot on the show floor. This knowledge can help you ensure your booth is not near one of your competitors or find a space further away if they already reserved a booth nearby.
Another important aspect of your booth location is its dimensions. Trade show promoters will provide you with your reserved space’s dimensions so that you can design and fit your trade show booth accordingly.
Perform a Trial Set Up at Your Business
Once you have all your trade show booth’s pieces, equipment, and materials, you should perform a trial setup at your business. This process allows you to double-check that you have all the parts, accessories, and items that you need to complete your booth. Performing a trial assembly will also allow you to test your exhibit’s dimensions and ensure they meet the venue’s standards and comply with your reserved spot’s dimensions. It will also give you an idea of how long the assembly process takes so that you have a better idea of when you need to arrive before the event.
If you’re working with a trade show display management company, you could also request they perform a trial setup and record the time.
Make a List of All Electronics and Accessories
Forgetting a phone or tablet charger can leave you scrambling to rent or buy one on the day of the trade show, which eats into your valuable preparation time. While packing up your exhibit materials, create a list of all the electronics you’ll need and their operating accessories. Making a list and checking it twice while you’re packing can save you the headache of tracking down necessary cables after you reach your destination.
Start Setting Up Early
Arriving at your trade show venue early is never a bad idea. Most vendors will arrive a day or two early to fully assemble their booths before the showroom is open to the public. Doing so will allow you to make your booth presentable and not cut any corners when it comes to quality. After completing your trial assembly phase, you should have a better idea of the time it takes to put up your display. Use this information to determine how much time you’ll need the day before or a couple of days in advance. Many modern displays use power from wireless connections or electrical cables, so setting up early also allows you to test your exhibit’s digital displays and electronics.
Meet the Exhibitors Around You
No matter where your exhibit is on the showroom floor, you’ll be surrounded by fellow vendors and exhibitors. During your setup phase, take the opportunity to meet the exhibitors around you. This practice is not only productive for networking and marketing your business, but it also helps to know your fellow vendors in case you need assistance with your booth. For example, if you or your team needs to leave for meals or breaks, you can ask a fellow vendor that you trust to watch your booth temporarily. Being friendly and helpful to your neighbors is part of good trade show etiquette.
Secure Your Giveaways and Belongings
While most exhibitors and attendees will be friendly and respectful of your booth, others may have their own agendas. Therefore, securing your belongings during a trade show event is crucial. It’s easy for your giveaway merchandise or personal items to be swept up in the busy crowd. Make sure you have a lockbox at your table or the venue has a location for you to secure your items. Attendees or even other vendors could target expensive items, such as your smartphones, tablets, and other devices. If you’re using gadgets as a part of your trade show display, make sure you secure them to your exhibit with locking cords or other methods so attendees can’t walk off with them.
Make Notes for the Dismantling Process
Taking notes while setting up your booth can save you time during the dismantling process after the event. For example, if you use certain tools to construct your booth materials, you’ll also need them as a part of the tear-down process. Labeling your storage and shipping containers before setting up your booth can help you remember where everything fits when it’s time for the takedown.
Use a Portable Trade Show Exhibit
Choosing and designing a portable trade show exhibit allows you to skip many of the traditional setup steps before the trade show. You can set up your booth independently or with minimal help in a matter of minutes when you use a portable exhibit such as a tailer model, a pop-up display, and more. These displays also make the dismantling process easier. If you’re interested in using a portable display, double-check the standards and dimensions of your venue and find a customization company that offers portable display fabrication options.
Hire a Trade Show Exhibit Management Company
Working with a trade show exhibit manufacturer or management company can help you skip many of the hassles of the exhibit setup process. For example, display designers and manufacturers can perform trial assemblies to take this preparation task off your hands. These teams also help you format your trade show displays to meet your venue’s dimensions and various needs and standards. If you’re looking for a trade show booth design company to assist you with the preparation process, trust West Coast Exhibit to help you.
Follow this guide to have a successful exhibit setup process for your next trade show appearance. And learn more about the services we offer at West Coast Exhibit to have a positive trade show experience. We can guide your business through the exhibition process, from booth design and setup to dismantling and shipping at the end of the event.