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How to managed cost and position at exhibitions

Read our top tips for preparing and positioning your stand at exhibits

First time exhibitors are advised to use the exercise as an experiment. There is little point in taking a large, premium site and paying for an expensive stand without a full understanding of both the exhibiting process and the dynamic of a particular show.

Organisers will show a floor plan with varying costs per square metre. Generally space near to the entrance and at corners is most expensive.

Stand space in most events is negotiable despite a set rate being quoted and the amounts vary from around £100 per square metre to thousands of pounds depending on the profile of the show and its duration.

Good deals can be negotiated close to the event if space has not been let, but these are unlikely to be in good locations. If they are in good positions beware – the show could be in trouble!

For first time exhibitors, however, a modest site can be useful because it allows a chance to understand a particular show and any mistakes will not be costly.

Corner sites and perimeter positions are considered best because visitors tend to walk round exhibitions and don’t always bother with all the inner aisles.

Stand types

There are essentially three different types of stand:

Shell scheme

This type of stand is essentially a series of panels that define the area of the stand. Shell schemes usually include an overhead name board to identify the exhibitor and a latticed aluminium ceiling structure that can be used to hang lighting. Furniture hire, lighting and mains electricity may also be included in the package.

Modular build

Modular stands comprise sections that can be constructed in a variety of formats to suit the exhibiting environment. Typically they include pop-up towers and display walls. The materials and graphics can be changed according to requirement.

Custom build

Customised stands are generally the most expensive and are often one-off structures built mainly from wood and covered with whatever material the exhibitor chooses.

The stands tend to be much more expensive than modular versions because they require bespoke design and construction. There are cases, however, where custom stands have modular elements and can be re-used.

Good deals can be negotiated close to the event if space has not been let.

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