As trade show exhibit designers, we understand the in’s and out’s of crafting effective trade show displays of all kinds. But, the most important part of our jobs is to ensure that our clients are happy with what they commission us to design and build. And the first step of getting your vision out of your mind and into the real world is to craft a comprehensive RFP (request for proposal).
For the uninitiated, a RFP is where a company advertises that they are going to start accepting proposals for new exhibition designs, one of which (usually) will be accepted and chosen to become the final exhibition design for that company that becomes the actual trade show exhibit.
So, it’s easy to see just how important crafting a comprehensive and detailed RFP can be for a company that wants to make sure they get proposals for designs that are along the lines of what they are looking for in a trade show exhibit.
The next question is what should be put in a RFP. There are several items that should be covered in each RFP in order to make sure that you give exhibit designers enough information about what you are looking for to craft an effective proposal and create a compelling design that will appeal to you and your company.
The first part is some background on your company. This should include information about your branding, any special messages that you want to get across and high-resolution logos and other applicable images as well as taglines and other marketing messages that you use. It’s usually best to have your marketing or advertising department create a package to provide with any RFP so that exhibit design companies can make sure to create something that fits well with your existing image and marketing.
After that, you need to provide any specific design needs that you may have. This includes logistics such as size and structure of the exhibit as well as a budget to work within and a timeline to get it all done.
Finally, some details on the show (or shows) that you will be deploying your trade show exhibit at will be helpful, because they provide a context for the exhibition design as well as allow designers to determine any show or venue constraints on design that need to be worked within. Some context about your position at that show is also helpful. If your CEO will be giving a keynote presentation that is useful information.
Remember, getting the best exhibition design proposals starts with crafting a comprehensive and thorough RFP. So, make sure you give designers all the information they need.