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Virtual Trade Show Exhibits: The New Trade Show Normal

Virtual Exhibits combined with in-person events is a reality in a post-pandemic world. Blazer Exhibits can help you with both!

Virtual trade shows can be very successful, and with the right preparation, company owners can create effective, eye-catching virtual exhibits.

  • Virtual Trade Show Exhibits: How Does a Virtual Trade Show Work?

    First, to build the best virtual trade show exhibits, marketing professionals will need to get to know the virtual trade show process. As you well know, a regular trade show involves several physical booths, lots of face-to-face networking, and prospects walking the exhibition hall.

    Virtual trade shows include all of the networking and industry insider conversations, but those conversations move to a digital space instead of a physical exhibition hall. Now, what does that digital space look like? Interestingly, if you’re familiar with role playing video games, you may already have an idea of what virtual trade shows look like. When you log into the event, you’ll see a 3D image of an exhibition hall, complete with other "people" wandering the space.

    In this 3D virtual exhibition hall, you can set up your own booth, click on other virtual trade show exhibits, gather contact information, and watch informative presentations. You can wander the virtual space at your leisure, and you can designate different members of your team to oversee your virtual booth at different times, much like you would in the real world.

The Value of Virtual Trade Show Exhibits

Virtual trade show exhibits can provide tremendous value for exhibitors and attendees, if done correctly. Trade show experts are predicting a huge growth boom in the virtual exhibit space.

First of all, even though virtual trade shows look different than real-space events, those who organize and attend these events report the same values for their virtual experience as they do for their traditional trade shows.

According to the Center for Exhibition Industry Research, those values include community, networking, and learning new things. Because virtual trade show participants still take these values seriously, they bring these values into the virtual event space.

If these values make up a major part of your trade show goals, then you can rest assured that you’re still communicating with like-minded individuals. There’s no need to worry about missing out on your values, even if the presentation of those values looks a bit different than usual this year.

Next, trade shows are profitable, and they can remain profitable even among virtual trade show exhibits. Entrepreneur illustrates this point

Exhibiting at a trade show is an excellent way to find customers to help your business grow…Trade shows are also economical ways of getting sales. The CEIR reports that closing a sale that begins with contact at a trade show runs about half the cost of closing a sale that doesn’t have the exhibition advantage: $550 and 1.4 sales calls compared to $997 and 3.6 sales calls.

Because virtual trade shows have all the same goals as a real-space trade show, there’s no reason virtual events shouldn’t be as profitable as their non-virtual counterparts. Granted, virtual events will come with challenges that non-virtual events don’t face. However, the opposite is also true, as virtual events avoid many of the challenges that come with real-space events. Marketers may leverage the advantages of virtual trade show exhibits to make these events profitable for their companies.

Virtual trade shows may also help marketing professionals reach a wider audience. In the real world, humans simply cannot be in two places at once. In the virtual world, however, people can navigate between several distinct spaces without ever leaving the house. This is where virtual trade shows gain an advantage over traditional trade shows.

Have you ever missed a valuable networking event because you had another business obligation? Many marketers have found themselves in this position. It’s much easier, however, to attend both opportunities if at least one of those opportunities is virtual. As a result, when you set up a virtual trade show exhibit, you may get to network with people who wouldn’t have been able to attend the event if it had taken place in a non-virtual space.

In the same vein, virtual events can help you save money on travel expenses, since you won’t need fuel or hotel costs. As a result, your sales may become even more profitable than they would have been in a regular trade show.

You can even attend more than one trade show at the same time, which you certainly couldn’t do in real space. While you’re working multiple trade shows, why not use the same basic template for all of your virtual trade show exhibits? This method will give you yet another way to save money.

Some pandemic-related changes may stay long after the pandemic has ended, and virtual trade shows may just be one of those things. This does not mean, however, that virtual trade shows will ever completely replace face-to-face events. As president John Caplan said in a quote for MDM, We think the…digital trade show is a better use of people’s time and money than the ‘old world’ model, but I do think the physical trade show will return. Just like peanut butter and jelly make the perfect sandwich — you need both.

The future of business may include a mix of virtual and face-to-face trade shows, giving marketers the benefits of both. This mixture may prove quite profitable for your company in the future, so why not spend this time learning the ropes alongside your fellow marketing professionals?

Because virtual trade shows have all the same goals as a real-space trade show, there’s no reason virtual events shouldn’t be as profitable as their non-virtual counterparts. Granted, virtual events will come with challenges that non-virtual events don’t face. However, the opposite is also true, as virtual events avoid many of the challenges that come with real-space events. Marketers may leverage the advantages of virtual trade show exhibits to make these events profitable for their companies.

Virtual trade show exhibits can also help you gather valuable data for your company. The COVID-19 pandemic, and all of the measures you’ve had to take to keep your employees and clients safe, may have put your data conversations on hold for the past several months. Your virtual trade show participation may just bring those conversations back to life.

Up until the pandemic ground business to a halt, business owners, managers, and CEOs had really started realizing the value of data. By learning more about their clients, including what they want and how they spend their money, business people can make the most of their marketing, product development, and much more.

Much of that data came from trade shows. Now, virtual trade show exhibits can help businesses start gathering relevant data again. In fact, these virtual events can provide more data than face-to-face events can.

Virtual Trade Show Setup

Obviously, setting up virtual trade show exhibits is a different process than setting up traditional trade show exhibits. There’s certainly a learning curve to the process. Don’t stress over the changes, though. Remember that everyone else at the trade show is learning the ropes, too.

How to Prepare

  • Just like with a traditional trade show, your first step is to research your virtual trade show options and sign up for the one(s) that fit best with your company and clientele. You may or may not have already taken this step.
  • Next, read up on the show(s) in which you plan to display an exhibit. You may receive some information via email, or the organizers may send you some physical literature. Read whatever the organizers send your way, and take some time to explore these shows’ websites. This information will include instructions on how to set up virtual trade show exhibits in their space. Each trade show will likely have slight variations, so if you sign up for more than one within a short span of time, make sure that you familiarize yourself with the differences.
  • Next, it’s time to build your booth. Even if you’ve always set up your own booths in the past, when it comes to virtual trade show exhibits, it’s a good idea to talk to an expert. Contact someone who knows how these spaces work and who has experience building exhibits. If you have a particular vision for your exhibit, let your booth expert know. Between your vision and their expertise, you can create an excellent virtual booth.
  • During your discussions, don’t be afraid to ask questions. Your exhibit builder should have no problem answering questions about their experience, their reason for choosing certain aspects, and other exhibit-related information.

Blazer Exhibits for Virtual Trade Shows

If you’re looking for virtual trade show help, take a look at Blazer Exhibits. The Blazer team is here to help you with your virtual booth needs. We understand that trade shows look very different right now, and we know that these differences come with challenges, even for the most experienced and creative business leaders. We’ll help you make the transitions easier as you make the best of this unfamiliar format.

What We Do

The Blazer team has over 35 years of experience designing and building trade show exhibits. We pride ourselves on end-to-end management, which not only includes design, but logistics, freight, setup, and tear down as well

Most importantly, we make sure that our clients stand apart from the crowd. We believe that our clients deserve better than cookie-cutter displays. They need exhibits that capture the heart and soul of their businesses, and they can’t have that kind of exhibit if their displays make them look like everybody else.

Our displays catch people’s attention so that our clients can make the most of their networking opportunities.

Going Virtual

We’re no strangers to virtual exhibits. We’ve always included a free 3D booth design with each of our custom creations. The 3D rendering allows us to show our clients the full picture of what their booth will look like on display.

Now that many trade shows have gone virtual, we’re applying our 3D rendering skills to virtual trade show exhibits. We had no trouble making the transition, thanks to our years of digital graphic design experience. Now, we simply put that experience to work in new digital environments.

Adapting for the Future

Once again, virtual trade shows will likely remain a part of the business world, even long after the COVID-19 pandemic ends. As a marketing professional, your future may include attending many types of trade show events.

The Blazer team is prepared for that future. We take pride in staying a step ahead of the game and always looking for what’s next in the trade show world. Our clients can always count on us to provide what they need, no matter how much the landscape changes.

Adaptation and flexibility are key parts of our business model. We’re prepared for anything so that you can be prepared, too.

Ready to Learn More?

Want to learn more about virtual trade show exhibits? We’d love to answer your questions. Contact the Blazer Exhibits team now. Let’s start building a virtual trade show exhibit that will give your company the attention that it deserves.