Trade Show Tent Ideas You Can Take to the Bank
Whether you’re a trade show regular or have merchandise to display at a festival or farmers market, a good looking presence is critical for businesses displaying their services and wares at trade shows, art fairs, and conventions. Whether you exhibit at open-air markets, festivals or venues that are devoid of shelter, you need a trade show tent (10×10 or bigger) to protect yourself and your merchandise while promoting your business with a form of advertising.
That said, if you’re going to the expense of having a tent customized so your presence is not only noticed but stands out, don’t you want to make sure it’s unique, high quality and sturdy so it keeps on protecting your assets over time? Let’s set off on a journey of awareness so you get the best deal ever and a distinct look that will imprint your name on the minds of everyone attending the trade shows you book.
Why are trade show tents important?
According to the International Association of Exhibitions and Events, trade shows are literally the lifeblood of commercial enterprises, which is why this organization was founded back in 1928. The ability to showcase merchandise isn’t the only reason businesses choose trade show tents: they serve as permanent advertising vehicles, imprinted with company slogans, taglines, logos, corporate colors and perhaps even a word or two of promotional copy.
Though the most popular size of trade show tents is 10×10, and often get small businesses off to successful starts, sizing options have expanded so dramatically, you get to call the shots if you find yourself in a position to occupy more than the standard 10×10 square feet of display space. Obviously, your circumstances and budget will determine your choice when you shop, but it’s good to be aware of choices you have even if you’re just doing a little dreaming about the day your enterprise outgrows its current 10×10 tent needs!
Yes, size matters!
How many standard tent types and designs will you find in today’s market? Too many to count here, but these are currently the most popular sizes, according to folks in the display industry:
1. Instant and pop-up canopies are so easy to install, a single person is capable of getting one up in a relatively short amount of time. In most cases, you can leave your toolbox home because they are designed efficiently to open and close in a way that’s not too different from an umbrella. Light (as little as 40 pounds) and collapsible, these compact display tents go anywhere you want them to go and many come with their own storage bags.
2. Pole tents or pagoda tents are larger, heavier and more complicated than pop-ups. They’re not hard to erect, but you’ll have to be adroit at juggling poles and tarps if you plan to install one alone. Manufactured for businesses seeking a trade show tent that will last a long time, they feature thicker, sturdier textiles for longevity, with special attention given to seams and tie downs. If you’re graduating from a pop-up, allow extra set-up time to set stakes that anchor pole tents—especially if you’ll be setting up shop in a windy area. Even pole-style trade show tents, 10×10 in size, will need more installation space to accommodate the ropes and stakes that keep this tent stable. These are best in outdoor spaces as well.
3. Tension tents have nothing to do with the stress you feel when you introduce a new product at a trade show and have placed a big corporate bet on its’ success with buyers! Tension tents resemble pole tents, but they’re taller, which is why the industry nickname for this tent style is “high peak.” Tension tents look more dramatic, cover more ground and are more aerodynamic, so if you worry about exhibiting in areas that present drainage problems or you expect to encounter high winds, these tents are so versatile, you can leave them up year-round if you like.
4. You might call Frame Tents the Cadillac of trade show structures because poles are not involved. Instead, the manufacturer churns out a tubular metal skeletal structure that’s covered by sturdy material, so you won’t need extra room on the ground to drive in stakes or poles. With those poles missing, unobstructed views allow you to display more merchandise and configure the space more artfully, so it appeals to buyers and shoppers. Our frame tents perfect? What did your mom tell you about perfection? In fact, you will spend more on a frame tent and if you thought driving those stakes into the ground took time-well, let’s just say you need to bring along your tool belt because you’ll be dealing with hardware and a more complex set up process.
What you should know about the art and craft of tent making.
Today’s tent technology is breathtaking and fascinating, so knowing a bit about how a tent goes from idea to printing and construction puts you and your business ahead of the game. The secret to success when engineering today’s tents is digital printing technology using a process known as dye-sublimation. This printing method replaced traditional screening. It’s faster, more dynamic, and in some cases, earth friendly. Further, dye-sublimation allows tent makers to imprint on textiles and rigid materials, so your coordinated message needn’t be limited to your tent only.
Here’s how it works. A select list of materials that include nylon, polyester, and some plastics are subjected to an infusion of dye that penetrates surfaces so thoroughly, as soon as the materials are heated, the polymers in the material bond with the ink. The result is gorgeous, permanent color that doesn’t just sit on the surface; it bonds the ink to every thread so graphics and text permanently adhere to surfaces and won’t fade, peel or crack, even under harsh cleaning and weather conditions.
While the imprinting process begins with a design drafted on a computer, the construction of your tent is a fairly traditional process. Rotary blades and hot knives do the cutting once the fabric comes out of the plotter where the printed surfaces are output. Both manual and automatic sewing machines do the piecing, stitching, hemming, and finishing. Your job? Choose attent manufacturer with a wide range of equipment options, so whether you’re ordering a standard 10 x 10 or you plan a massive presence at your next trade show, you won’t have to go elsewhere to get exactly what you want.
Ways to get your tent noticed.
Arriving at a trade show when vendors are all set up can be a daunting experience because it could be your first chance to get a glimpse of the competition. But if you plan on giving your tent a distinct look from the get-go, you can leave the worrying to the other guys.
“When customers enter your store, an eye-catching display up front should make them slow down. Otherwise, they may hurry on through the store and buy little.”
Use color and contrast when you sign off on your tent print job. Customized graphics have become more dramatic and vivid, but it’s important to work with a professional design team so you don’t use competing images and colors that scare clients away. Use your logo as a starting point and think “high contrast.”
Strike visual offers free design and works with you to make sure you get the best looking product.
For example, a black background makes a yellow and red logo pop, and this combination can grab all of the attention away from a neighboring tent that’s white with wimpy color accents. That said, it’s important to avoid over-doing it. Psychologists say that too much stimulation drives people in the opposite direction, so don’t cram your tent surface with graphics and text just because you can.
Pile on the extras. Inflatables? They stand out from the crowd and they’re easy to inflate and deflate before and after the show ends. Teardrop flags? They’re everywhere, affordable and come in sizes that range from 8- to 15-feet, so your trade show tent couldn’t be ignored, no matter where you’re located within trade show boundaries.
Teardrop flags are inexpensive, easy to customize and portable so you won’t spend hours rigging them when you need to be putting products on display. One caveat: when you order either, make sure they are compatible with your tent’s design! You can make sure of that if you order your tent, flags, and inflatables from the same resource, so patterns, graphics, and typefaces all match up. Strike visual has great deals on all these custom branded products.
What’s going on under your tent?
Give customers reasons to visit your trade show tent without spending a fortune. Small efforts can yield big results and bigger orders, so don’t ignore ideas other companies have used successfully, even if they sound a little outrageous. Borrow any of these 6 ideas and allow your imagination to come up with others:
1. Print postcards with a mystery question that must be brought to your tent to snag a customized trinket that’s embellished with your logo and URL address.
2. Bring a music system to your tent and play CDs to grab attention.
3. Host a wireless charging station for show-goers and give out crossword puzzles to complete while waiting.
4. Draw names from a fishbowl every couple of hours to get buyers back to your tent to see if they’ve won.
5. Rent a commercial popcorn maker and feed the multitudes. Print your logo on the popcorn bags.
6. Print inexpensive specialty items as giveaways. Personalized tote bags, bottle openers, pens, and lens cleaning cloths, bought in quantity, won’t eat up your promotional budget. If they generate sales, it’s money well spent.
Promote Your Brand With Custom Trade Show Tents
Get a lifetime warranty with a Strike Tent! Free design help is offered to make sure you’re confident in the look and quality of your tent. Strike offers many options and great customer service to help you find the right product for your needs.
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