I recently asked myself and my networks about the use of audio visual support in a trade show booth. Does it attract attention? Does it add value? Do people stop and watch? Is it worth the trouble? Our corporate office also recently launched a new presentation system called the DesignView. I was very impressed with the idea and concept.
My first order of business is to help clients determine what they want to achieve by using audio visual support. What is the message?
If you are to integrate audio visual into your booth, the message must be clear, crisp and attractive. The rule of thumb is that attendees will take 3 to 5 seconds to decide whether they will enter your booth or not. Audio visual support can certainly alter that behavior, especially if your content is simple. People are always self qualifying themselves these days. Who are you? What do you do or better yet what is my experience going to be by offering you some of my time? Why should I be interested in you? How are you going to entertain / service me? Your audio visual presentation must be compelling, otherwise the off switch goes on quickly.
The second order of business is to determine how that message is to be perceived and by who. Does your target audience get excited about audio visual? Are they over-marketed to? Is your content worth their time?
The demographics of your target market may be varied, but the underlying consistency is that consumers and huiman beings are savy. If you can speak to them and allow them ease of use, then you’re in. Net Gen’rs have to have the AV experience, otherwise you’ve lost them. Baby boomers are also quick to jump on board as long as it’s easily understood, but the reality is that you have to have human contact to support or back up you AV. Interactivity is the next wave of AV so get ready to invest in stand alone kiosks. Our new Envoy system tackles this demand, but do not kid yourselves. An interactive unit can only go sa far. People attend trade shows because people like to do business with people.
The third is to determine how it will be received. Today’s mobile world is getting ready to surpass the reality world (in some cases), but is the traditional audio visual (lcd, plasma, projection, digital signage) the way of the past, present or future?
Today’s technological advances and marketing mediums demand exhibitors to stay in touch with current trends. Audio visual and mobile gadgets are definitely trendy today and are here to stay and change very quickly these days. Not integrating these into your marketing campaign and especially in your booth and your at show promotions is not an option if you want to be perceived as a leader. These tools are especially important in creating a brand and an experience and culture around your brand. All up to date marketing departments will be using these technologies within one to three years so acting now may give you that edge. At a recent symposium about techonology and learning, experts indicated people learn more and demand more immediately because the technolgy and communications mediums are present now. The trend is to reach people through mobile technology rather than the internet.
As a conclusion, an overwhelming number of exhibitors and marketing experts have said that AV is an integral part of todays marketing and that neglecting it will leave your stand static. I leave the answers to you, but I still maintain your representatives and your innovation trumps any AV. I also am a firm believer that if AV is to be used, it should be large, impactful and of the highest quality. There’s a real cost to that and there must a return on objective for the added attraction.
You are either going to embrace it or get left behind … or you won’t need it at all. The answer lies upon your company’s vision and your industry’s advancement with technological advances. Some industry’s