Guest Post: How to Get the Most Out of Audio Visual Equipment

You see them at every exhibition, and in increasing numbers screens are everywhere. From top of the range Plasma Screens to tablets and cell phones. Why? Well moving images are proven to grab attention and engaging videos and games are great way to interact with visitors to your stand. The presence of these screens can also help to illustrate your familiarity with new technology and if everyone else is doing it surely you should to.

Well maybe you should, maybe you shouldn’t. Think about the last time you went to a trade show. How many of the videos did you actually watch for more than five seconds? How many of the games did you play? Problem is a lot of companies just play the same corporate videos that they keep on their website. I’m sure you’ve seen them, slick and professional and great way of telling the story of a company. But because they are designed for longevity they don’t tell you about the product you want to find out about, you can’t here the story because they don’t have sound and because you stopped to watch you’re now in someone’s way.

Video

So how can you use the moving image effectively at trade shows? Before you even decide you need one you need audio visual content you need think about what you want it to achieve. By the way, the answer isn’t ‘Get more visitors’. The answers might be something like, ‘educate visitors about our new product’ or ‘bring in qualified leads’ or even, for some games, to act as data capture.

So for example an effective video would include the following points:

  1. The product or service
  2. Its USP’s
  3. Its market
  4. How it benefits the market (what problem does it solve)
  5. Why it is better value than what your competitors are offering
  6. Testimonials

This doesn’t have to be exclusive to a trade show either. For example you could also stream it on a product or landing page. Or if it’s particularly good offer it as part of an information package. A nice thing about this approach is that it works even if you don’t actually have the product yet. Falling costs for video production and animation mean that you can take full advantage of computer aided design and computer generated imagery to create an informative and engaging video.

Games

On the other hand if you want to use a game then there are other benefits. For example at International Confex 2012 Nimlok used their design an exhibition stand game for three distinct purposes. The first was as lure to draw visitors over to their stand, the second was to give visitors a rough idea of what goes into the process of designing a stand and the third was to get names, email addresses and phone numbers for potential leads.

Like videos, games can be put on your website afterwards to help provide a boost to traffic and maybe showcase a less serious side to your company’s personality. If you promote them well at the trade show you may even find that they provide you with some nice linkbait to improve your SEO.

Music

Trade Show floors are often noisy places so you need to be careful with any music you play. Loud rock or hip-hop tracks are likely to annoy more people than they attract, while bland elevator style music is not much better than having no music at all. Having said that it is worth investing time and money in music for exhibition stands, according to a study by MusicWorks 76% of people prefer stands with music. To get the best effect consider what music fits your brand well, and won’t drive your staff to distraction. (Hint the answer isn’t whatever’s on your iPod.)

However you use video and interactive content the key takeaway is that it should be both relevant and fit for purpose. There is little point in telling people about your brand’s history when what they want to know is the technical specifications of your latest product. Work out what you want your content to achieve, then the content and then which display system would best suit it. You may even find that by avoiding gadgets and gizmos you can stand out from the rest of the tech obsessed crowd!
Have you had any success with audio visual technology? Or do you think it’s overrated?