3 Tips to Boost Food Brand Trade Show Impact

Food Brand Trade ShowBoost Food Brand Trade Show Impact with These 3 Tips

Beyond Meat made a HUGE impact at the 2019 #NRA (National Restaurant Association) show.

Have you ever been stopped in your tracks by an incredible display or exhibit while walking a trade show? I know I have.

It happened to me at the 2019 NRA (National Restaurant Association) trade show in Chicago. The Beyond Meat open booth design, coupled with a branded central tower made it impossible to miss and inviting to enter—no matter how crowded the space about the booth was.

It said one thing: We are THE NEXT BIG THING.

A simple, clean, clear food brand trade show statement that communicated more in one visual than a thousand words could do. If that was the intent, the Beyond Meat exhibit show rocked.

Most trade show exhibits (like this one) look like a brochure reconfigured on a wall.

Your company will spend a lot of money getting there (renting the space, display costs, shipping costs, travel costs, accommodation costs, etc.). The last thing anyone needs at a trade show is a presentation that does not do the heavy lifting and invite a conversation or business opportunity.

So when NewPoint clients are looking for trade display content solutions, the NewPoint team is primed to create an impact by adhering to 3 simple things:

1. Identify the top message hierarchy your company needs your primary audience to know

This should be a no-brainer but sometimes gets forgotten in the pursuit of any and every sale. Your company is spending a lot of money at the trade show, so invite as much business as possible. I agree that is true but keep in mind—that is why we recommend a message hierarchy. The most powerful food brand trade show message and space should are for the audience or prospect that is the best fit and highest margin sale for the exhibiting company. Reel them in, and the rest is gravy.

2. Keep it Simple

One of the hardest things about food brand trade show development is realizing that regardless of how ample or impressive a company’s exhibit space is, the message may be missed if the presentation is cluttered and not easily seen. It doesn’t help that trade shows themselves are a big mess of noisy, messy clutter all competing for the audience’s attention.

The simple fact is, like the exhibit shown above, most trade show exhibits have a lot more in common with billboards than brochures. Like billboards, trade show exhibits have very little time to communicate a message to the target audience. A car zipping down the highway at 70 mph cannot read the fine print on a billboard. That billboard has one shot at getting a straightforward message to the audience.

After the message hierarchy is in place, it’s time to develop that special, simple, strategically crafted message to draw in the company’s coveted target audience.

3. Don’t Be Boring

When planning a new food brand trade show exhibit, try to picture all the booths at the last trade show your team visited. Is there one that stood out? How about the competitor? Did they have anything special that warranted a second look or conversation? Chances are there are very few exhibits that make a person stop and take serious notice as the Beyond Meat exhibit did to me all those years ago. And if most exhibits are boring to you and me, just imagine what the target audience must think.

Simply put, if at all possible, do not take the safe option that probably mirrors the competitors and does not stand out in the clutter.

These three simple steps for trade show exhibit design are not easy to achieve. Like any impactful marketing message, it takes focus, discipline, and, most importantly, the blessing of the stakeholders to get there.

If you would like to learn more about building a food brand trade show booth that converts for your food brand, please reach out to the NewPoint team. If you are interested in more food marketing topics, please visit our “Food for Thought” page. Alternatively, check out NewPoint’s book: Moving Your Brand Up the Food Chain.