When I was working for Japan’s largest exhibition organizer, many foreign companies had ordered a rental display system to be put up by the organizer. This is because there is less communication needed with the decoration company and you can order it easily. However, a lot of visitors find it less attractive.
At a trade show, the decoration of your booth is just as important as your products or services. The reason is that visitors will decide to stop by your booth or avoid it based on a fleeting first glance of your booth. That said, I recommend custom-made booth decorations as much as possible. If you do so, Japanese visitors may think the following.
The booth decorations are sophisticated rather than simple, so they must be experienced exhibitors. Perhaps it is a company that is large and trusted in its home country that is able to invest in such a budget.
Their booth decorations show their unique corporate colors, so their products and services must be different from others. I can sense that they are serious about the Japanese market, so let’s hear them out.
However, I am not saying that you should spend a lot of money on fancy booth decorations. You can create a booth that will significantly attract visitors by simply following six points.
In the 2020 International English Proficiency Rankings by Country, out of 100 countries and regions where English is not the native language, Japan ranked 55th, taking a “low proficiency” spot for the fifth year in a row. This means that a lot of Japanese people are unfamiliar with English and will avoid your booth simply because it is written in English. It would be unfortunate if people don’t see your attractive products or services just because it is written in English. Be sure to display signs in Japanese.
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Visitors are not interested in your product/service name. They would like to know what kind of services you provide, what kind of problems you solve, and what makes you different from other companies.
Here’s a question. If you are hot and thirsty and want to drink a beer, which store signage would you be interested in?
Perhaps it is #3? Because now all you want is a cold beer to quench your thirst and deal with heat. The same is true for trade shows. There is no point in promoting the name of your company or service as in #1. Few people are interested in it and will listen to you.
In the case of #2, it’s a good way to describe what you do. But among the thousands or tens of thousands of beer retailers in the world, this title is not going to differentiate your booth from the others, and it’s not going to make you stand out.
So why is #3 better? That’s because it’s a booth that solves a problem. People are drawn to a company that provides exactly what they need. Especially at a trade show touting your services or technology, it is very important that the tagline of your booth shows what your products or services can solve.
Especially at technical and IT exhibitions, there is a lot of textual information, so visitors’ brains are confused when they enter the hall. Then the first thing they see is something big. It’s a large sign and large letters. The size of the sign/panel should be preferably B0 size (1030mm x 1456mm) or A0 size (841mm x 1189mm) or larger, and the text should be large enough to be read from 3 meters away.
Also, if you put up a panel of small letters inside the booth, visitors will have to go all the way into the booth. Most visitors are still undecided about buying your product/service and may be hesitant to enter the booth, not wanting to be latched on by you for too long.
Basically, people don’t come to a dark booth. You would hesitate to enter a dimly lit bakery, too. However, if the lighting is too glaring, they may not be able to see your product/service, or their eyes may become tired and uncomfortable. The key is to have a thorough discussion about lighting with the decorating company and proper lighting treatment. See below for discussion points.
Basically, it’s best to illuminate in the same direction as the visitor sees it. Be careful not to shine the light on visitors, as this can cause eye fatigue and make it difficult to see the product/service.
For example, the lighting in the newly established Tokyo Big Sight East Halls 7 and 8 is particularly bright. In that case, if the lighting in your booth is too bright, it may have the opposite effect. It is also important to find out whether your booth location is well lit or not. Tell the decorating company where your booth is located and ask them to give you a recommendation.
Whether you would like to brighten the entire booth or illuminate your signage and exhibits, make a plan based on how you would like to entice someone. It’s no exaggeration to say that lighting can make or break the impression of your booth. Set aside time to be proactive when it comes to lighting.
If your booth has a narrow entrance area, visitors often hesitate to enter your booth. Especially if you are able to get a corner booth, it is advisable to make your booth as open as possible, with only the minimum number of walls and pillars required.
As much as possible, it’s best to put your product at the front. Placing it at the back raises the psychological hurdle, as visitors will have to go all the way inside. Try to make sure that even slightly interested visitors can see your products right away. These are the tips for booth decoration that you should know when exhibiting at a trade show. Instead of the standard rental decorations, try custom-made decorations that maximize the appeal of your company’s products and services.
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