Trade Show Display Marketing Tips and Advice

Trade Show Booth - Material Handling FAQs

Posted on Tue, Jul 16, 2019

All due respect to Benjamin Franklin, but I believe there are three certainties in this world: death, taxes, and material-handling (aka drayage) fees. And like the former two, the latter is a complicated topic that is difficult to fully grasp. Here, then, are answers to the most frequently asked questions related to drayage that I receive from clients and newbie exhibitors. Before we go further, let me say that while the fundamentals of material handling are essentially the same across the industry, each event and venue may have unique practices and regulations. Therefore, I always recommend giving each show's exhibitor-services manual a careful read.

What are drayage fees used for?
Drayage is charged by the general service contractor (GSC) and covers the one-way cost of moving an exhibitor's freight off of its carrier's vehicle and to the booth space. I describe it as a one-way fee because technically it is only charged for inbound freight. Material-handling charges are used by the GSC to cover the cost of operating the advance warehouse and the venue's marshaling yard, the wages of the forklift operators and other laborers, the expense of owning and maintaining the forklifts themselves, and other show expenditures.

How is drayage calculated?
Material handling is billed by hundredweight, or CWT. (The letter C comes from the Latin word centem, which means "hundred.") What that basically means is that drayage is calculated by weighing each piece of freight and rounding that number up to the next 100 pounds. So 212 pounds is equal to 3 CWT, 489 pounds is equal to 5 CWT, etc. Unless an item is especially oversized, freight dimensions are usually not a factor when calculating drayage.

How your freight is packed will determine which CWT rate you are charged. Crated freight has the least expensive CWT because it is the easiest to store and move. Palleted freight is generally more expensive than crated, since it requires more care during unloading and transport. And then there are "special handling" items, which include anything needing additional time, equipment, or labor to move, e.g., an oversized piece of exhibitry, a tech-laden display, etc. Consequently, this freight is charged the highest rate per CWT. For example, at a recent foodservice expo, the rate for crated freight was $104.50 per CWT, while special-handling freight was charged $176.75 per CWT. Read More

Topics: chicago trade show services, Trade Show Marketing Tips, trade show services, trade show costs, trade show services in chicago, material handling

Conventional Wisdom - McCormick Place, Chicago, Illinois

Posted on Thu, Jun 27, 2019

The crown jewel of the Windy City's expo and event scene, McCormick Place is just minutes from downtown Chicago and welcomes nearly 3 million visitors each year. The state-of-the-art convention center is the largest in North America and comprises four buildings: the North and South buildings, the West Building, and the Lakeside Center. Together, they account for 2.6 million square feet of exhibit halls, 170 meeting rooms (for a total of 600,000 square feet of meeting-room space), six ballrooms, and four theaters – one of which can seat more than 4,200 people. The center's West Building is LEED certified, denoting it as an eco-friendly trade show venue.  Find out more!
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Topics: events in chicago, chicago trade show services, chicago trade shows, trade show display company in Chicago, island rentals in chicago, rental exhibits in chicago, CHICAGO RENTAL BOOTHS, chicago trade show events

Let our Experts Manage Your Trade Show Booth

Posted on Thu, May 02, 2019

Managing your trade show exhibit can be time-consuming. It includes making sure the right booth properties arrive on time and show ready. What's more, good trade show exhibit management requires extensive attention to detail and balancing multiple deadlines and stakeholders.  If you are worried that details might fall through the cracks, we provide a on-line management  cloud-based project & inventory management system, providing our exhibit management clients with 24/7 portal access to exhibit & show material inventory, event details & show service orders.   Recently we have received several RFP requests for storage, inventory management, and show services.   So I am republishing our Online Management System tour and tutorial.  Take a look!

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Topics: chicago trade show services, show services, trade show services, trade show services in chicago, chicago exhibit setup services, tradeshow services, trade show storage

6 Examples of Good Customer Service (and What You Can Learn From Them)

Posted on Tue, Sep 25, 2018

One bad customer service experience can swear you off a product or service forever.  But one exceptional experience, on the other hand, can turn you into a lifelong and loyal brand advocate.  More than half of U.S. consumers express loyalty by recommending brands to family and friends, and almost half of those consumers stay loyal to those recommended brands. And brand loyalty is important -- because almost half of consumers spend more with brands they're loyal to.

So, how can brands actually earn the loyalty of customers? How can customer service professionals consistently delight and empower customers so they not only keep coming back, but they refer family and friends to become customers, too?

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Topics: chicago trade show services, trade show services, trade show services in chicago

Trade Unions that work Chicago Trade Show Events

Posted on Fri, Aug 17, 2018

McCormick Place employs an in-house division called McCormick Place Technology Services Department to meet the  needs of the event planners and their exhibitors.  Your Event Manager (The Tradeshow Network for instance) can help you manage all these contractors by assisting you in completing the forms or doing the forms for you.  Our installers can provide some of the booth services directly under our installation contract  - but not all of them - and it is mandated by the show and the venue so be sure you check all the exhibitor rules.
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Topics: chicago trade show services, chicago exhibit setup services, selling in your exhibit space, chicago trade show floor, chicago trade show events

50 Budget and Money Questions Salespeople Can Use With Any Prospect

Posted on Tue, Nov 21, 2017

Figuring out whether the buyer can afford your solution is nearly as important as figuring out whether they can use it - even when you working a prospect in your trade show booth.  After all, need doesn’t matter without the ability or desire to buy.   But talking about money with your prospect can be tricky. Not only can these conversations feel awkward, but you may not know exactly what to say or how to say it.   That’s where this list can help. To identify whether a buyer can -- and will -- pay for your product, use these 50 questions.

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Topics: chicago trade show services, selling at trade shows, trade show selling, selling in your trade show booth, trade show selling tips, selling in your exhibit space

Reinventing the Trade Show Floor: What's Next?

Posted on Tue, Oct 24, 2017

It’s a fact of this rapidly-advancing era we live in: Consistently reinvent, or get run over.  We see it happening all the time with major, often decades-old companies who fail to keep up, then soon wither and disappear.  Yet in the trade show world, it seems that lesson generally goes unheeded. Sure, a few award-winning shows are seeking to push the limits of what a trade show can be. But for the most part, few are willing to take truly innovative risks, especially when it comes to shaking up the floor plan.

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Topics: chicago trade show services, Trade Show Marketing, Trade Show Marketing Tips, Custom Trade Show Exhibits

Offer Value, Not Gimmicks

Posted on Tue, Oct 17, 2017

It’s a sad fact of our modern culture that many things with little to no value receive a high percentage of attention, particularly in the popular media. But just because reality TV and do-nothing celebrities take over our national spotlight, that’s no reason to let gimmicks take over your exhibit marketing plan. Here are four areas of caution for exhibitors:

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Topics: chicago trade show services, Trade Show Marketing Tips, trade show design, trade show services, Custom Trade Show Exhibits

Show services is an important part of the trade show booth

Posted on Thu, Sep 21, 2017

Having your booth taken good care of before, during, and after the show is an important part of the trade show experience.  You need to use your trade show display for several events - not just one - so make sure care is taken in putting it up, taking it down and having it shipped.  It is the simple things like adding blanket protectors in between each panel that can make a huge difference in how your booth looks when it is show time!  Here is a video of one our latest booths being taken down and packed.  Check out the love and care that we provide to our exhibitors inventory even our rental exhibits!

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Topics: chicago trade show services, trade show services, trade show management, trade show services in chicago, tradeshow services

5 Essential Stages for Every B2B Pipeline

Posted on Wed, Aug 23, 2017

I’ve never been a fan of jargon like lead acquisition, funnel, and pipeline. They make the sales process sound like we’re drilling for oil, not building and strengthening relationships with human beings. Still, whatever we want to call them, these principles are essential. Research has shown a nearly 20% difference in revenue growth between B2B companies with clearly defined sales processes (or pipelines) and those without.

So if we need to talk about these terms, let’s at least make it more fun by comparing the B2B sales pipeline to the auditioning process for a reality talent competition. After all, what has more drama, heartbreak, more characters, tears, and laughs than a reality TV show? Sales.  And what better way to sell but in your trade show booth on an exhibit floor!

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Topics: chicago trade show services, selling at trade shows, trade show selling, selling in your trade show booth, trade show selling tips

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