If you’re concerned about conserving resources, including your own trade show display budget, it’s time to look at your exhibit inventory and make a plan for a greener future. We suggest that you ask a few questions to help you determine the best course of action.
1. What is sitting in storage?
An amazing number of companies leave old exhibit properties in permanent storage, ignoring the ongoing charges. After all, nobody wants to throw away what seems to be a perfectly good booth, even when it is no longer being used. But before you decide to toss out your old booth displays, consider refurbishing or trading in for a new exhibit instead. Keep in mind that some exhibit storage firms charge for disposing of old properties, so you will want to check for any charges before you decide. Usually, it’s better for the planet – and for your company – to find a way to repurpose your booth, rather than throw it out or let it gather dust.
2. Would refurbishing the booth make sense?
If you think the exhibit just looks tired and worn, but you don’t need a major reconfiguration of your booth space or booth design, refurbishing might be your best option. Exhibit design specialists can make old properties look new and reflect your latest brand image in a brand new booth design. With modular exhibit properties, it’s easy to take old components and put them together in new ways. However, if you aren’t using a booth because it’s too small, it may be best to trade it in.
“My advice is to consider refurbishing if you aren’t changing your booth space significantly and if the exhibit components are holding up structurally,” explains Chris Roberts, president of The Tradeshow Network Marketing Group. “However, if you’re moving from a smaller to a larger booth space, your better option may be to trade in the old booth for a discount on a new exhibit that is designed to fit the new space.”
In addition, keep in mind the costs of shipping a heavier, older display exhibit property versus newer, lightweight displays. If your displays do a lot of traveling, you might be better off selling or trading in your exhibit.
3. Can my old exhibit be traded in for a new exhibit?
Unless your exhibit is beyond repair, you may find significant hidden value in trading in your old exhibit. In fact, a trade-in can equate to as much as 25 percent off the price of a new exhibit.
Roberts points to one client who represents the ultimate in green exhibiting. They purchased a refurbished display design from The Tradeshow Network Marketing Group eight years ago and inquired about refurbishing it when they decided to expand their booth space last year. However, jumping from a 10 x 20 to a 10 x 40 space meant that their old booth components would not work well. They decided to go with a new custom trade show display that cost $33,000 and reduced that cost with a $5,000 discount from trading in their old exhibit.
Roberts says that exhibit companies are able to refurbish the old exhibits for other clients to purchase or rent, so it turns out to be a win-win for everyone.
4. How can I find out if my booth can be refurbished or traded in?
The first step is to inspect your exhibit inventory and take photos of properties you are no longer using. Then submit those photos to one or more exhibit houses for consideration and a quote and schedule a time talk through your options with them by phone. If you have an exhibit that is currently in use but on its last legs, consider shipping it directly from a trade show to a new exhibit house for inspection and a quote. In addition, you can browse The Tradeshow Network’s online catalogs of rental inventories, as well as trade-in information.
The bottom line, says Roberts: “Never just throw it away.” Getting money for used displays is the ultimate in green exhibiting.