Wrapsol LLC set out to prove a point at the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES). The maker of protective films for mobile electronic devices wanted attendees to understand the durability of its shock-absorbing and puncture-resistant product. So Wrapsol invited attendees to palm an iPhone that was coated in the company's protective film and, with the flick of a wrist, shoot the mobile device at a basketball hoop. Whether or not the visitor made a basket was irrelevant, as no one was keeping score. But hit or miss, the phone bounced down an etched-aluminum ramp and landed in a bed of sharp, pointy nails. Despite the trade show trauma the phones endured for four straight days of CES, the protective film resulted in nary a scratched screen. We guess you could say Wrapsol nailed its in-booth demo.
Blue Light Special
Blufixx GmbH wanted to make sure that attendees didn't whiz by its 10-by-10-foot booth at the National Hardware Show in Las Vegas. So the Wesseling, Germany-based maker of light-curing plastic adhesives and fillers brought an extra-special staffer to the show: a mascot to bring the company's product to life. Clad in a yellow spandex jumpsuit and a cylindrical container with a blue light affixed to the top, which referenced the UV light needed to cure the company's liquid plastics, the unexpected – not to mention illuminated – figure attracted more than a little attention from showgoers, many of whom were eager to pose alongside the anthropomorphized adhesive for selfies. Talk about a traffic builder that stuck with attendees!
Atelier ABC Mannequins planned on unveiling three lines of unique mannequins at EuroShop in Dusseldorf, Germany. But to up the exhibit-marketing ante and brand its lines as functional works of art, the company enlisted the help of Neve, a renowned Italian street artist. While the mannequins were displayed in three distinctly different vignettes, each styled to represent a different line, Neve created unique paintings on the exhibit's exterior walls as passersby, well, passed by. The paintings, which represented fetish and emo subcultures, 1700s Europe, and the Asian youth movement, became evolving mural-sized attractions as Neve worked on them throughout the five-day show. After EuroShop, Atelier ABC took the paintings to its headquarters
in Milan, where they were displayed during Fashion Week, the Salone del Mobile, and other important design and fashion events throughout Italy.
Sometimes busy exhibitors need someone – or something – to stand in and engage a prospect while staffers are busy. SmartSky Networks LLC employed just such a stopgap at the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) show. The exhibitor projected a hologram onto a semitransparent screen in the shape of a life-size staffer. Positioned aisle side, the element was little more than a scripted video loop communicating the company's key messages. But the novelty of the delivery medium made attendees stop, stare, and ultimately wait to speak with a living, breathing staffer.
There's a reason why movie-theater seating is elevated toward the back and lower in the front. That way, every person in the theater is guaranteed at least a decent seat. At Interop Las Vegas, Opnet Technologies Inc. applied this same optimal-viewing theory to its in-booth presentation. Rather than using more than 30 identical-height chairs for its theater, it used office-style chairs with an 18-inch seat height for the front two rows but placed roughly 30-inch-tall stools in the last two rows. The two seating options not only ensured that all attendees could see the presenter, but also sent a subtle message that Opnet cares enough about attendees to address their viewing capabilities.
Live performances can draw hordes of attendees to a trade show booth. So at EXHIBITORLIVE, Spoon Exhibit Services Inc. tapped the spoon-playing talents of Deb Perry, a finalist on the TV show "Australia's Got Talent" whose videos have garnered more than 1.5 million views on You-Tube. The charismatic musician took the small stage in Spoon's exhibit on the half-hour during each day of the three-day show, wowing gathered attendees with her spoon-playing prowess. The ditties provided Spoon staffers with an engaged audience primed for post-performance conversations, resulting in music for attendees' ears and the company's bottom line.
Diverse Terrain Ahead
Hard-core bicyclists tackle myriad riding surfaces, including everything from dirt and gravel to sand and snow. And companies such as SKS Metaplast Scheffer-Klute GmbH design and manufacture products specifically suited to one or more of these conditions. So to help Interbike International Bicycle Exposition attendees envision what environments might be best suited to its various products, SKS altered the exhibit flooring under three of its bike displays. One bike rested on an elevated platform covered with faux turf, another sat atop red gravel and tumbleweeds, and a third was placed amid a mound of faux snow made of fluffy, white cotton. With little more than an aisle-side glance, attendees could immediately discern which bicycle models best fit each of the three environmental conditions – thereby allowing them to hone in on the product categories most suitable for their riding habitat of choice.