Start from the beginningIn order to start planning your exhibition and calculating the whole budget, you need to fully understand the different aspects of a trade show from booking your stand or space, to kitting it out, from accommodation, travel, staffing costs, equipment and services. Visit as many trade shows as you possibly can and do your research by speaking to fellow exhibitors to learn about their experiences and successes.
You can come across great ideas that could be implemented in your own trade show stand from unique ideas to get more visitors to your stand, to engagement tools and branding opportunities.
BudgetingHolding a trade show might sound simpler than it actually is but the trick is to know how much your stand is going to cost and determine your budget from the very beginning.
Most of the money goes into the cost of renting the stand space, the cost of designing and building your exhibit, the cost of travel to and from the trade show, the cost of advertising, and last but not least, the cost of accommodating your staff so ensure you factor all of these costs in your budget.
It’s all in the designAny exhibitor should be aware of the very fact that almost half of the budget goes into the construction and the design of the trade stand, spending almost 40% of the budget on that alone. The reason behind this calculation is that 12% goes into the desired design and the other 28% goes into renting the space for the stand.
Travel lightTraveling to and from the trade show, in addition to the expenses of the accommodation, can be very budget consuming as well. Here are some tips to help you calculate the cost beforehand and definitely save money.
1. Avoid any unnecessary luxuries, such as business class or extra luggage; you can always hire or ship the equipment that you need for your trade show, which will cost less.
2. Try to book a suite with plenty of twin beds and bedrooms. In case you go to the same hotel more than once, you can have the luxury of becoming a member and subsequently get discounts for rooms and free nights.
3. Avoid taxis, and hire cars that will take you to and from the trade show.
4. Finally, bring a cooler with you, so you and your staff can easily store your own food in it without having to buy food from the event
Staff costsWhile many exhibitors take into account the cost of accommodation and transportation, they forget to calculate their opportunity cost.
You need to plan with your staff how they’re going to manage the office while you and the traveling staff are gone. That means assigning them with tasks to try and minimise the loss of productivity and efficiency at your office.
Promotional giveaways & literatureYou also need to plan the budget of the promotional giveaways you’re going to give out in order to boost your trade stand.
Other trade show services you may need to factor in
- Corkage fees
- Reinforced panels for shell scheme stands to support TV screens mounted on the shell scheme
- Rigging for hanging displaying from the ceiling of the venue
- Logistics - getting your equipment to your stand
- Additional storage space