To get Amazing Exhibition Stands, Every Time, you need to follow a few simple rules. We have created these easy to follow tips to make sure you get the very best from your stand.
Visual storytelling and is widely used in today’s marketing world and for a very good reason; the visual cortex is by far the largest portion of the human brain. A study carried out by Brain Rules showed that a typical person remembers only about 10% of what they hear after 3 days but if a picture is shown then that percentage increases to a dramatic 65%.
Pictures also evoke emotion and persuade the audience to take action. A good example of this is the difference between TV and Radio, ask yourself which has the biggest lasting impact? The lesson; show, don’t tell! Especially when it comes to your exhibition stand design.
There are always exceptions to the rule but generally most people would agree that visual messages backed up by good graphics get more attention and as the world becomes more and more visual with the population getting used to Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook and other visual media, this emphasis will only grow. Here are a few rules to follow that will help engage your audience and avoid the many pitfalls helping you choose the best exhibition stand design company for your next show.
Amazing Exhibition Stands – Tip #1: Show, Don’t Tell!
When talking to your exhibition stand designers make sure they understand you want to “Show, not tell”. A general rule in film-making and graphic design is don’t tell your audience something unless you can make them see it – we all think in pictures, not words.
If words are used they must paint a picture. If you can show a client how it works rather than describe it, then do so. They will remember it. Likewise, when advertising a product or service show it in use rather than describe how it works. Sounds simple but you will be very surprised when you walk around an exhibition hall how many are telling with lots of text, or salespeople bending prospective customers ears rather than good images or videos showing the product or service in action.
Amazing Exhibition Stands – Tip #2: First Impressions Matter.
Yes it’s an old saying but it really does matter and there is plenty of evidence around to support that; just Google first impression matter and over a million search results are sent back, but basically they all say the grey matter between our ears has been honed over 1000’s of years to react quickly and remember visual impressions mainly to survive. React to danger, react to food sources, react to friend or foe, these are deep rooted and we can’t help but sub consciously react to visual stimulation, it’s in our genes!
In the world of exhibition, this subconscious is hard at work and we do not even realise it. If your audience gets the wrong idea or a danger colour is used and triggers the flight response then your stand will not be visited. The first impression must appeal to the primitive instincts to draw them in.The graphics and primary message used needs to hook the audience and invite them to find out more without triggering any danger signals which are inherent in all our brains and all this is done in a fraction of a second. If you wanted to survive in caveman times you had to make those snap decisions to avoid being trampled or mauled to death.
For example, even if your exhibition stand is selling guard dogs its no good putting a picture of a snarling Alsatian dog on the stand people will automatically flee, instead use a picture of cuddling puppies with a message “find out how they turn into guard dogs”!
Amazing Exhibition Stands – Tip #3: Tell a Story.
So how do we do that? Well the unforeseen changes a journey into a story!
A story is only a string of words and at best a description unless there is some form of the unforeseen. Imagine driving from your home to work, a definite journey but not a story. If by chance someone knocks on your window while you are stopped at traffic lights and asks you for a lift and engages you in conversation – then there is a story to recount, who knows where it might lead. The unforeseen is you have had your everyday journey interrupted.
You can define the unforeseen in so many ways. It does not just mean, having a battle with someone or something totally negative happening. The unforeseen happens in every day business life and is often a positive not a negative.
If a person or a company has a problem to solve this is in itself is the unforeseen! It is the marketer’s job to take this unforeseen something and explain why the product or service is relevant to that person or company’s problem.
How? By listening to the problem and then creating a visual story to resolve the unforeseen. The story becomes the solution and then the challenge is to condense this into a one line headline with graphics to tell the story in an exhibition stand design scenario. It is then the exhibition stand designers job to liaise with the marketer to develop and produce the answer.
Sounds simple! It’s not!
Amazing Exhibition Stands – Tip #4: People relate to people.
Think about it! Do you relate more to an object, idea or a person? Most people relate to people.
Knowing this would lead you to think that everyone would tell the story of the people behind a product or service but guess what? They don’t! How many times have you been on an exhibition stand where there are just pictures of product or service, coupled with an all knowing salesman bleating on about his product regardless of whether you have a need for it or not. This is a typical example of a non empathetic sales person but that’s another subject. It is so much more powerful to use an image that relates to people using or receiving your product or service. This can be made even stronger if you can show people of the same or similar backgrounds, as people relate best to their peers.
An example of this is Superman; would he be so appealing to us if he was not also Clark Kent? By telling a story about relationship, you inculcate a sense of trust between the identified audience and your brand and message.
All good film directors know that to really make an audience trust a character the eyes have it, again because of our inbuilt behaviour genes, from birth humans gain information by looking into each others’ eyes. Not literally each others eyes but seeing and copying what their peers do, it is a very powerful influence that should be built into your stand if at all possible.
A smiling face has appeal and will be interpreted by any person whether in China, India, Africa the list is endless – global appeal which will attract more people to your stand. Once attracted please do train your people to be empathetic, question, question, question not tell, tell, tell!
Amazing Exhibition Stands – Tip #5: Teach and Hold the Audience.
It’s very easy to lose your story in the endless number of blogs, articles and media used today. You must stand out somehow! So don’t be just another writer; bland does not cut the mustard, never has, never will!
Be controversial as long as you believe it, instill a profound message or maybe have a moral twist, give a lesson to your audience. But don’t become a preacher but you can be an advocate.
Stories have been utilised, since time immemorial, to impart wisdom and teach lessons to humanity, our brains are attuned to it. The most memorable stories are those with a twist or some form of humour to them and as always a picture is worth a thousand words. Even when a person is telling a story, because we think in pictures, all they are doing is describing a picture for your brain to paint. So try and incorporate this into your exhibition stand.
Not an easy task but maybe some of these adverts will give you some inspiration.
Another great short cut is to add a TV screen or some multimedia to your exhibition stand. In the past a slide show was state of the art but in today’s world if you want to hold your audience, get your story across, animated presentations and interactive media are a must. A good video with a little twist preferably with humour is the way to do it. If looking for inspirations take a look a few adverts on Youtube.
Amazing Exhibition Stands – Tip #6: MAKE IT EYE CATCHING!
All our senses crave stimulation and an image that is effective will stimulate all of them. If the correct picture is chosen not only will the eye be pleased but an image can and will activate feelings of warmth, apprehension, nostalgia or trigger the sense of smell, sound and taste. Again it is our sub-conscious that controls this and we have no or very little control over how it reacts. So be careful which images you choose when designing your exhibition stand graphics.
A strong image of any type will tell its own story. Another image may have the “wow” factor – these will immediately catch your viewers’ attention. Other images may be so captivating they inspire your potential clients’ imagination. If so they can be geared to trigger their hopes and dreams. Good exhibition stand designers will use these powerful devices to visually tell your story and choose images to make you stand out from the other competitor stands around you.
While the best stand designers are mindful of the most striking images, they also know how to couple the most important elements of the brand and message with these chosen images. It is also important not to get bogged down in the detail which often muddies the message and overall ambiance. Short and sweet is by far the best. As pointed out in previous posts audiences are already over exposed to an endless stream of visual and written information, and you’ll quickly lose their attention if you overcrowd them with too many details.
To visually tell a story focus must be maintained by structuring images to emphasise the most important element of the story. Again minimise the number of images used. Endless pictures are the same as rambling words and have the same effect of turning the viewer off. If 2 pictures will do the same as 10 then don’t be tempted to use more.
Plus Exhibition stands are very aware of these rules to ensure perfect exhibition stands, and we are happy to provide a free 3D design of how we think your stand could work better for you. All you have to do is send us an email or call us on 01782264110. We will then have a 10-minute chat with you to develop a brief and provide a free with no obligation design.