Cutting Installation and Dismantling Costs at Post-COVID Trade Shows
It’s obvious to anyone in the trade-show industry that events post-COVID will be an entirely new beast, with different expectations, rules, and dynamics. One of the biggest differences experts are reporting is a dramatic decrease in budgets for in-person trade shows, which is understandable given the shift towards digital marketing.
However, trade shows remain a core event for many companies, and even with a flattened budget, their teams have to make it work. Here are several tips for cutting costs for the installation and dismantling fees of your trade-show exhibits.
Hire Crew Members Experienced Setting Up Your Exhibit
Practice makes perfect, and when it comes to exhibit set-up costs, a team that’s set up your booth before has the ability to save you a lot of money.
By using the same installation and dismantle crew, or at least a crew with a labor supervisor, general-contractor, or other laborers that are experienced with your exhibit, you can save cash.
Get Rid of Unnecessary Visual Additions
While adding rigging to your booth may be an attractive option to increase the visual appeal of your exhibit, rigging qualifies as an extraneous addition to your exhibit–it usually has no utility.
Rigging isn’t necessary to the overall functionality of your booth–and especially post-COVID you should be focusing on face-to-face marketing. Remove rigging from your display and save money on set up costs.
Prepare Your Set-Up Team for Efficiency
When it comes to your setup and tear down crew–especially if you hired third party manpower–time is money, and every minute they spend trying to figure out how to set up your exhibit or searching for a tool is on your dollar.
To avoid this unnecessary time waste, communicate early with the leader of your I&D team to discuss the details of the event and our expectations. You should provide the team with emails and print copies of line drawings, renderings, and staging photos of your exhibit, packets of info in your exhibit crates, any special tools, cabinet keys, and any notes on how to work around tricky components.
Finally, make sure to ask your I&D provider to check that all the electrical and flooring has been installed correctly and is clear of crates and other show materials.
Buy Only What You Need
As part of setting up your booth, you’ll need to order electricity for the event. Many marketers make the mistake of ordering more power than they need for a single event. The best way to avoid this is by using a power-measurement unit and attaching it to each of the devices you’ll be using at the event.
You add up the wattage of each object, and then that’s how much power you’ll have. While it’s a good idea to add on an additional 10% to avoid any errors–you wouldn’t want your screens to go black in the middle of a pitch–this method allows for a more accurate number and thus more accurate spending.
Investigate Union Regulations
If you’re a seasoned trade-show marketer, you know that many states and their venues require you to employ union laborers to set up your booths and exhibits. However, there are 27 states where this is not a requirement, and you’re allowed to use your own employees to secure your booth.
Instead of spending a dramatic amount of money on union labor, you can save and use your own employees. Make sure to investigate each venue’s labor requirements and then plan accordingly–don’t just go with the status quo.
Saving money on installation and dismantling costs, allows you to funnel cash towards other parts of your trade-show exhibit. And in the post-covid world it’s a great idea to have extra money that will allow you to amend your booth to keep up with the ever-changing trends.