Recent history has taught us that although technology brings people together, nothing will ever replace the power of meaningful, in-person experiences. The last few years have introduced new platforms and technological advancements that are here to stay. As our world evolves, the new question we must answer is: how do we mesh digital experiences with in-person, IRL experiences?
Trade show exhibits and events are the perfect example of how the benefits of digital experiences can be used to enhance physical experiences. Incorporating digital experiences in your trade show booth design is a powerful way to attract and engage visitors, create immersive experiences, and showcase your brand.
Here are the key factors to consider to best integrate digital with physical experiences.
Define Your Objectives
Identify and clearly outline your company’s goals and objectives for the trade show event. Decide what you want to accomplish with your presence and create objectives with measurable outcomes. Examples of the most common objectives include generating leads, educating visitors, or improving brand awareness. This informed decision will guide strategy as you design and create digital experiences that will directly support your overarching goals and objectives.
Identify Your Audience
You probably already know your audience, but for the specific event you will be exhibiting at, determine who will be there so you can understand the demographics, preferences, and needs. If possible, obtain a list of exhibitors and sponsors to gain insight into who will be at the trade show event. This will help you tailor the digital marketing elements that are most relevant to your audience, so you can use the right language and messaging to initiate the conversation.
Choose Your Reality
Create 3-D immersive experiences for your customers and bring your booth to life with VR environments, interactive displays, touchscreens, video halls, mobile apps, holographic projections, and more. Using augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) applications will help showcasing your brand’s digital growth. If this is something you have never done before, it can feel overwhelming. At ASTOUND, we can help you find creative ways to integrate AR and VR in your trade show digital experience. Our team of experts can help you understand your options and guide you through creating a tailor-made mixed reality experience that your audience will surely remember.
Align Your Branding
This may seem a bit rudimentary, but don’t forget that your brand’s digital experience should always reflect your brand identity. Create a cohesive experience by reinforcing your brand’s message using consistent colors, fonts, and images. The beauty of digital signage is that this content can be updated in real time, therefore saving money on replacing printed tradeshow banner content that changes day-to-day.
Create Interactive Experiences
Design interactive experiences like kiosks and touchscreens to attract your customers. This helps encourage visitors to engage with your brand and is an opportunity to educate your audience. Anything you can do to foster product engagement through education, entertaining media (like videos or mixed reality), gamification, or participating in your product or services will help bring people to your exhibit and keep them coming back.
Incorporate Multimedia Content
This is your chance to tell your story, separate your brand from the competition, and showcase your product line and/or offerings with the help of videos, animation, and high quality visuals. A compelling brand story is more memorable when visitors receive the messaging through riveting multimedia experiences.
Gamify Your Trade Show Experience
For a new twist on an old tactic for engaging your audience, gamify your trade show exhibit with digital elements to bring more visitors to your booth and to increase visitor participation. Incentives like rewards, discounts, and prizes have been long-used to attract new audience members and trade show attendees to your booth. Use contests, quizzes and other fun motivators to capture your audience’s attention and keep engagement levels high.
Leverage Your Mobile App
This is exactly what your mobile app was made for. Leverage your app to connect with your audience. If you don’t have a mobile app yet, this is the perfect time to launch one. The app can be used for a variety of purposes, such as: unlocking benefits for app users, providing access to exclusive content, tracking user engagement, and familiarizing users with your brand. Integrate your AR applications to create unforgettable mobile and wearable hardware. This tactic is great for post-trade show marketing and lead follow-ups, as you continue to engage with your audience even after the event.
Test and Optimize
Always test all digital components prior to the trade show to make sure everything is functioning as it should. You should do a ‘dry run’ before you leave for an event where you practice constructing your trade show exhibit. Think of it as a dress rehearsal before the big show. As with all technology, you will need to consistently test and analyze your exhibit design and the digital components. Make sure to bring extra power adapters, cables, and extension cords just in case.
Train Your Staff
This is certainly nothing new! As with all events where team members are representing your company in public, be sure to equip them with all the knowledge and training they need to effectively engage with visitors. Remember, these team members are your brand ambassadors, so they need to be able to answer questions and guide folks through the digital interactive experiences you will be using. Knowing the answer to every question is impossible, but understanding where to find an answer is something everyone on your team should be comfortable with.
The success of a trade show exhibit lies in creating a balance between human interaction and technology. The digital elements you incorporate should capture attention, enhance visitor experience, and directly support your company’s objectives at the event.
ASTOUND is here to help you build world class digital experiences to reach your brand’s full potential. Our team of award-winning creaqtors, innovators, developers, engineers, and craftspeople help global companies and IPs achieve their goals. In addition to providing solutions for your interactive and digital integration, our specialized team can help make your design and construction aspirations a reality.