Better Booths By Design

June 13, 2019

Emily Schneider

Emily Schneider is a Creative Services Manager at CSI DMC, where she develops innovative solutions and original concepts for a wide range of corporate clients. With more than 15 years of experience in the special events industry, Emily’s time in the business has included involvement in sales, operations, marketing and technical production. 

There’s always that one booth on the trade showfloor. It’s the booth that everyone talks about, that people call their friends over to see, where people are constantly taking photos. How do you build that booth? 

There are a few different ways to make that sort of stand-out booth design, a booth that provides a memorable experience and drives the kind of interactions you want with potential clients and partners. At a recent event I attended in Las Vegas, I noticed a few particular booth ideas that stood out from the crowd.

Make It Larger Than Life

The interior of one particular booth featured life-sized photos of different destinations around the country, scenes from events and cities where the hosting company had offices and local teams. These images gave attendees the feeling that they could step right into each scene and offered a welcome visual break from the usual banners and signs. Beyond advertising the company’s various locations, the images were beautiful and became ready-made photo opportunities, attracting guests to step in and snap a photo or a selfie as they moved through the room. 

Create a similar look by committing to life-sized and over-sized representations of your product or service, breaking up the floor experience and offering a different starting point for attendees to engage with you.

Give Attendees Something to Do

Inviting guests to stop at the front of a booth to create their own essential oil spray from a selection of recipes engaged attendee on multiple sensory levels. Options included blends designed to help relax, refresh, energize, or focus attendees through the power of scent, and took only a few minutes. Each guest then walked away with a miniature spray bottle (carefully selected so that it would not violate TSA requirements for liquids allowed in carry-on bags). 

Those few minutes where each guest stopped to take part in the booth activity offered the hosts a guaranteed opportunity for connection and conversation, a chance to share their messaging directly. The activity also sent a subtle signal to guests that this company was interested in offering attendees a personalized experience that spoke to their specific needs, in addition to doing business with them a way to re-engage with the brand every time they used the essential oils. 

Gather Information in a Fun Way

Another lesson learned from that same event in Las Vegas is that gathering customer information doesn’t need to be (and shouldn’t be) boring or invasive. A detailed map of the world dominated one side of this booth, accompanied by a table with stacks of customized stickers. The stickers offered guests three different options to choose from; the first read, “Where have you been?”, the second “Where to next?”, and the final option, “Dream Destination!” 

Supplying these stickers and inviting guests to place them on the map according to their own recent travel and personal dreams gamified the collection of travel information for attendees. The host company collected and analyzed this data to determine trends regarding previous and future travel from the members of the trade show audience. This gave the company the chance to develop a deeper understanding of their target’s activities and make plans on how they can meet those needs. 

Guests love a way to interact that doesn’t feel forced; creating different designs that incorporate engagement and information gathering into a single source provide clean, exciting booth designs that achieve goals seamlessly!


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