How to Write an Exhibition Stand Brief
If you are taking the time to research how to write an exhibition stand brief then you probably want to make sure you get the best possible display for your budget. Our aim is to help you get to know what exhibition stand designers need to know to respond with an accurate reply, saving you time and ensuring your brief will get you the details you need to make an informed decision. It is likely that you have been given the task of writing a brief and organising the exhibition stand on behalf of your company and we recognise that this can be an arduous task. T2 is here to support you all the way through from the original brief meeting to the pat on the back from your MD or client.
These pages are intended to guide you through the process, provide some clarity prior to our first meeting where we can advise you about issues or catches in relation to the organiser, show or venue. We also operate a one-person policy who works with you from concept to completion, so you won’t need to waste any precious time explaining exactly what you need.
In truth, this information also helps stand designers and builders determine whether they offer the right solutions for you.
A Stand Design Company Needs To Know
As an exhibition stand design and build company we will need to know a little about your company to get a feel for how we should approach your exhibition requirements. A good starting point would be to list the following:
- Some information about your company and your website link.
- The products you sell or services you provide.
- How long have you been established?
- Are you an international company or focused on a particular location?
- What are you trying to achieve at this exhibition, brand awareness, direct sales, etc?
- Your target audience (i.e. CEO, Buyer, specifier or installer)
- What are you exhibiting, products large or small, services etc?
- Do you have a launch product or service?
- How many of your staff will be working on the exhibition stand at any one time?
- Will you provide hospitality?
- Will you have a visitor experience, activity or other?
To meet your requirements, we would need to know where any previous exhibition stand design has failed or photos of stands that you or other members of your team like. Please also detail anything else that could be relevant.
What You Want From An Exhibition Stand
You will need to decide what you want from the new exhibition stand and a good starting point would be to consider the following:
- What space have you selected for your exhibition stand, is it open on one, two, three or four sides?
- If you are exhibiting at other shows how does this space compare and think about how to use the stand in different space guises.
- Have you checked the proposed flow of visitors’ traffic?
- What is the best orientation of the stand? Sometimes it might be better to be facing a large visitor attraction rather than the entrance.
- Do you wish your stand to be open and inviting or does it have to promote a more targeted approach with a private meeting room?
- Do you require a store area?
- What services do you require (power, water and waste, telephone, internet etc)?
- Will you have a platform floor? (floors may require a ramp for disabled access and at certain venues a rounded corner) Floor platforms range from 38mm to 100mm.
- Do you wish to reuse the exhibition stand or elements of it?
- How many graphics and what form would they take? (Posters, light boxes or full wall prints)
- Do you require display cabinets?
- Do you require audio visual screens, computer, touchscreens, tablets, music system or a PA system
- Do you require a reception counter(s)?
- How many literature racks, carrier bag hooks etc?
- Outline the aims of the exhibition stand (to increase traffic, increase product awareness, generate more sales, brand awareness, a new product or service)
- Is the new stand part of a re-brand, a new product launch or part of an ongoing strategy ?
- Is there other branding/advertising taking place that the new stand should link in with?
- What are the unique selling points for your company, your products or your services?
- Is your market saturated with competition and do you need something ‘different’?
- Do you wish to purchase the whole stand outright, some of the stand outright or hire it for each show?
- Generally, an exhibition stand purchased outright will incur a storage charge unless used frequently. It will also be subject to charges for refurbishment and amendments.
- Decide upon a budget which should include everything and if it is realistic we will use that as a maximum spend level. If we propose designs over your budget we are aware that we are just wasting time and money.
Branding An Exhibition Stand & Exhibition Media Displays
The exhibition stand should be an extension of any media, advertising or branding that you have. It is always helpful to be provided with a brochure, some marketing literature or the annual report to help get a feel for the company.
Design is subjective, in order to get an idea of the kind of exhibition stand that you like, it is often worthwhile noting details of three or four exhibition stands that you have seen and like. Not necessarily competitors or exhibition stands related to your industry – just give a few examples that you like: the colour schemes, the graphics, audio visual items or the structural elements etc.
Do you have access to any corporate images? Does your company have an image library? In larger companies, you may find that another cost centre has already spent hundreds or thousands of pounds on photography and used it once. It would make sense to use these images if possible.
Brochures etc – An area that is often overlooked for is copy writing. Have you got the graphics and copy text ready to go for the exhibition in question? Do you have the resources or skills to create and supply the text – If the answer to these questions is no, you will need a copywriter – we can provide this service if necessary.
- Does your product require specialist lifting or handling etc? If it is very large it may need to be sited prior to the exhibition stand build
- What is the maximum height allowed and do you wish to utilise this?
- Is it possible to ‘hang’ things from the ceiling (banners, stand elements etc)
- Do you understand your responsibilities of prime responsibility under the CDM rules?
- Do you understand the Health & Safety responsibilities?
8 Things to Consider When Exhibiting, before, during & after the show
- Are you certain the exhibition is the correct one, if so booking early to get the best site available?
- Book hotels early to obtain the best rates and locations.
- Appoint an exhibition stand design and project management company early to allow plenty of time for completion of visuals, drawings and costs. The design approval and CDM declaration can take up to six weeks so ideally we are appointed at least two months before the exhibition.
- Pass the exhibitors manual and the show log in details for T2 to ensure that deadlines for ordering services etc. for the exhibition stand are not missed as this will result in extra cost.
- Decide graphic content early for production allowing plenty of time for the graphics. We ask for finished artwork four weeks prior to the exhibition.
- Appoint somebody within the company to liaise with the design and project management Company. This will hopefully help to stop design by committee which is can be a very long process.
- How will you obtain details of visitors – bar code readers, collecting business cards etc
- How do you propose to judge the success of exhibiting at this event?
Get People To Visit An Exhibition Stand
You are proposing spending money on a new exhibition stand now it is important to consider how you will promote it.
An exhibition stand should really be supported by a strategy of promotion and advertising, perhaps consider the following.
- Postal mail shots
- PR exercise
- Complimentary gifts.
- Web site promotion
This area of marketing is often not considered, many rely on the exhibition organisers to promote the event in its own right. This does not always help your company as you are probably one of many providing the same or similar products/ services at the show. If you do not tell your clients and potential clients you are exhibiting there is a very good chance that your competitors will be inviting them to their own exhibition stand!
You should finish your exhibition stand design brief with a short conclusion, outlining what you would like to receive back from us and by what date.
At T2 Display Ltd we provide a full design proposal, visualising the stand using your logos etc, the layout, the costs (initial and on-going), the timescale’s involved and any assumptions and conditions that we have made.
Good luck with your exhibition stand design brief and don’t forget to include us on your invitation to pitch!