Monday, March 30, 2009

Green Products - Trade Show Flooring

The trade show industry, like most other industries, is doing what we can to offer trade show products that are more friendly to the environment. I will try to explore the variety in different categories. For this post, I will discuss trade show flooring. There is a nice variety of different flooring that is 'sustainable' flooring.

A product is considered sustainable if it is long-lasting, reusable or has a minimal long-term effect on the environment. Sustainable flooring is out of materials that are renewable, natural resources such as wood, bamboo or cork. The resources need to have been grown and harvested in a way that does not deplete or irreversibly damage the environment. They can be made from recycled or reclaimed materials, are designed to have a long life cycle so it does not need to be replaced as often, are manufactured with as little impact on environment as possible. They are made without toxic coatings or chemicals, installed without the use of toxic products or biodegradable.

The different types of 'green' flooring are:
  • Carpeting - Starts from corn that is converted to glucose sugar. This sugar is then converted to monomers and then to polymers. The carpet fibers are then made from these polymers!
  • Wood - This particular wood flooring is from sustainable green groves and is recyclable.
  • Cork - Cork flooring is a completely renewable source made form wine cork waste or the renewable bark from cork oak trees. It is 100% biodegradable. It is made in an environmentally friendly manufacturing process. Cork is naturally rot-, mildew-, and fire-resistant so no chemical treatment is necessary.
  • Recycled Rubber Flooring - Made from recycled tires, needs no toxic adhesives for installation, is durable and reusable.
  • Carpet Padding - Even carpet padding can be made from recycled products.

These products may cost a little more than the regular products but the more that we use green products, the sooner the prices will come down.

(Craig Mlasko is the owner of The Works Displays & Exhibits which offers a wide variety of environmentally-friendly displays and accessories.)

Monday, March 16, 2009

The Exhibitor Show 2009

The annual Exhibitor Show is coming up next week. The Conference is March 22-26, 2009 and the Exhibition is March 23-25, 2009 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas. It is nice show for both exhibit managers and industry people.

For exhibit managers, they have numerous classes to get certified, to learn more about each step involved in the trade show process and a number of exhibit companies in the exhibit hall.

For industry people, it gives us a great opportunity to network and see new and improved products.

(Craig Mlasko is the owner of The Works Displays & Exhibits in San Jose, CA and has 20 yrs experience in the trade show and marketing industries.)

Thursday, March 5, 2009

How to work a trade show.

While walking many trade shows in my years, I like to observe how people work in their trade show display, how they present to attendees and some of the items that I see that amaze me.

One thing to remember is that if you are in a 10' display, you generally have 10 seconds to get that person's attention - that's the time it takes to walk from one end of your display to the other end. Not much time, so you need to do the right things to get them to stop!

First, you need to have the right people in there! That may not necessarily your best sales person; they could be back office personnel or some of the booth models for hire. You want people that have the best personality in there. It is a quick impression moment. You can have your best sales person contact them from the show lead. A quick one liner, a little quip, a joke; anything to get them to stop and listen to what you have to say!

Personal presentation is huge! In the past, it used to be the norm to have your personnel wear a suit and tie. Nowadays, most wear nice slacks and embroidered shirts that look very professional and it relays your company's personality. If in your normal day, you wear your shirts hanging out and your pants low, you need to be professional and tuck in the shirt and pull the pants up!

If you have enough employees to cover the show, you should work in shifts so you don't get tired or are not outgoing in your presentation. If you are the only one, only sit in a chair or stool when tired. You should stand as much as possible. Sitting shows that you just aren't interested.

The one thing that I see that irritates me more than anything is when I see people eating in their display!!! If you have more than one, go to the Exhibitor Lounge to take a break. If you must eat or bring a beverage into your exhibit, hide it behind the display or under a counter. You paid a lot of money to be at your show. Don't make look horrible with food and water bottles strewn all around.

(Craig Mlasko is the owner of The Works Displays & Exhibits in San Jose, CA and has 20 yrs of experience in the trade show, marketing and sales industries.)