Creative Insights for Your Next Trade Show Exhibit
As exhibit designers we create trade show exhibits that promote your brand, generate visitor traffic and support your business development opportunities.
In order to bring you fresh exhibit design concepts, we seek out creative inspiration from a variety of sources. Shapes, colors, textures and lighting ideas can be drawn from trends in other industries including visual merchandising, interiors and fashion. Yet we come by our best ideas experiencing live events ourselves.
We recently travelled to the world famous EuroShop Trade Fair in Dusseldorf, Germany. This event draws more than 90,000 attendees from around the world. It was a rare opportunity to observe, research and experience an international live event that takes place only once every three years. Our initial reaction was pure sensory overload, quickly followed by sore feet, as we visited more than 15 halls over just a few days.
Clients sometimes express the desire for their exhibit to have a “European” style often associated with a “white album” minimalistic approach. What we witnessed at EuroShop was the opposite. These are a few of our key takeaways from the latest European exhibit designs for your future consideration:
There was an explosion of vibrant color. From bright reds and oranges to deep blues and even lavender. (multi-color booth with flooring). Exhibitors didn’t shy away from using multiple or off beat colors. Color was seen being used to guide traffic and to present product groupings within the space.
Natural materials included creative uses for greenery and wood. Metallic panels with mesh inserts offered subtle screening while enabling passersby to see through them into the exhibit. Textures were also combined with vibrant color for greater visual attention. Reflective surfaces were used to create the illusion of larger space.
Neon is new again and appeared in signage and as accents for exhibit features. Double paned backlighting allowed one image lit in front to be turned down to reveal another behind it. Built-in display boxes traditionally used to feature small products got a face lift with frames lit around the perimeter.
Europeans’ casual conversation is key to building business relationships. Many exhibits featured comfortable seating and light refreshments to encourage visitors to stay a while. The use of acoustic panels enabled conversations to remain private.
We were energized and inspired by our exposure to so many sensational exhibits. We hope that by sharing a few points from our perspective as designers will challenge you to rethink how a European design aesthetic may benefit your next exhibit.
Angie Bertelsman, Senior Exhibit Designer
Alex Karan, Creative Manager