Show Displays Give Insights Into Finishes

Show Displays Give Insights into FinishesDark stained doors

CabinetMaker+FDM magazine conducted its 24th annual survey of cabinet displays at the 2012 KBIS trade show in Chicago.  The survey “shows what is being displayed, not what is being produced or sold.” On the one hand, it lacks solid sales statistics and a formal study favored by market researchers. On the other, it gives a quick, grassroots confirmation valued by sales managers. Here’s what FDM uncovered:

The dark colors included near-black; medium colors, soft brown-gray. Surprising to Midwest Prefinishing, the survey noted an increase in glossy finishes (“high-sheen fixtures with stainless steel, wood veneer, marble island tops and floor lighting”).  Because kitchen cabinets often set the trend for doors and trim, this grassroots survey is a snapshot of our millwork market as well.  Take note.

Show booth guidelines

Their survey also highlights show booth, marketing techniques.  We presume that exhibitors chose new and mainstay products to highlight their niche. How do you design your show display?  We suggest these guidelines and welcome your comments as well:

  • Avoid crowding:  Focus on one major initiative and a few smaller supporting products in the background to demonstrate breadth.
  • Avoid an empty look: A booth with too much space is perceived as lacking breadth. Don’t  depend almost entirely upon banners; it looks lazy.
  • Display something unusual to attract attention.
  • Display a new initiative or product as the centerpiece of the booth.
  • Include movement, sound, or light: a demonstration with the attention-getting noise of a motor, project a video on the booth’s rear wall, instruct the sales force to demonstrate features, turn the product on a carousel.
  • Include show-specific signing: don’t rely on the generic booth sign placed by the convention center.  Create professional-looking banners and easel boards specific to the show theme.
  • Set up a brochure holder and make sure that it is completely filled regardless of how much traffic you think will come to your booth.
  • Remove the table as a barrier between you and the visitor.

What additional guidelines do you follow when displaying at a show?

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