Better Booths By Design

June 13, 2019

Emily Schneider

Emily Schneider is a Creative Services Manager at CSI DMC, where she develops innovative solutions and original concepts for a wide range of corporate clients. With more than 15 years of experience in the special events industry, Emily’s time in the business has included involvement in sales, operations, marketing and technical production. 

There’s always that one booth on the trade showfloor. It’s the booth that everyone talks about, that people call their friends over to see, where people are constantly taking photos. How do you build that booth? 

There are a few different ways to make that sort of stand-out booth design, a booth that provides a memorable experience and drives the kind of interactions you want with potential clients and partners. At a recent event I attended in Las Vegas, I noticed a few particular booth ideas that stood out from the crowd.

Make It Larger Than Life

The interior of one particular booth featured life-sized photos of different destinations around the country, scenes from events and cities where the hosting company had offices and local teams. These images gave attendees the feeling that they could step right into each scene and offered a welcome visual break from the usual banners and signs. Beyond advertising the company’s various locations, the images were beautiful and became ready-made photo opportunities, attracting guests to step in and snap a photo or a selfie as they moved through the room. 

Create a similar look by committing to life-sized and over-sized representations of your product or service, breaking up the floor experience and offering a different starting point for attendees to engage with you.

Give Attendees Something to Do

Inviting guests to stop at the front of a booth to create their own essential oil spray from a selection of recipes engaged attendee on multiple sensory levels. Options included blends designed to help relax, refresh, energize, or focus attendees through the power of scent, and took only a few minutes. Each guest then walked away with a miniature spray bottle (carefully selected so that it would not violate TSA requirements for liquids allowed in carry-on bags). 

Those few minutes where each guest stopped to take part in the booth activity offered the hosts a guaranteed opportunity for connection and conversation, a chance to share their messaging directly. The activity also sent a subtle signal to guests that this company was interested in offering attendees a personalized experience that spoke to their specific needs, in addition to doing business with them a way to re-engage with the brand every time they used the essential oils. 

Gather Information in a Fun Way

Another lesson learned from that same event in Las Vegas is that gathering customer information doesn’t need to be (and shouldn’t be) boring or invasive. A detailed map of the world dominated one side of this booth, accompanied by a table with stacks of customized stickers. The stickers offered guests three different options to choose from; the first read, “Where have you been?”, the second “Where to next?”, and the final option, “Dream Destination!” 

Supplying these stickers and inviting guests to place them on the map according to their own recent travel and personal dreams gamified the collection of travel information for attendees. The host company collected and analyzed this data to determine trends regarding previous and future travel from the members of the trade show audience. This gave the company the chance to develop a deeper understanding of their target’s activities and make plans on how they can meet those needs. 

Guests love a way to interact that doesn’t feel forced; creating different designs that incorporate engagement and information gathering into a single source provide clean, exciting booth designs that achieve goals seamlessly!


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Overview: The award-winning Orange County Convention Center (OCCC) goes the extra mile to make every day extraordinary by offering customer service excellence and industry-leading partnerships. From their dedicated in-house Rigging team to their robust Exhibitor Services, The Center of Hospitality brings your imagination to life by helping you host unforgettable meetings and events. With more than 2 million square feet of exhibit space, world-class services and a dream destination, we are committed to making even the most ambitious conventions a reality. In October 2023, the Orange County Board of County Commissioners voted to approve allocating Tourist Development Tax funding for the $560 million Phase 5A completion of the OCCC. The Convention Way Grand Concourse project will include enhancements to the North-South Building, featuring an additional 60,000 square feet of meeting space, an 80,000- square-foot ballroom and new entry to the North-South Building along Convention Way. “We are thrilled to begin work on completing our North-South Building which will allow us to meet the growing needs of our clients,” said OCCC Executive Director Mark Tester. “As an economic driver for the community, this project will provide the Center with connectivity and meeting space to host more events and continue to infuse the local economy with new money and expanding business opportunities.” Amenities: The Center of Hospitality goes above and beyond by offering world-class customer service and industry-leading partnerships. From the largest convention center Wi-Fi network to custom LAN/WAN design, the Center takes pride in enhancing exhibitor and customer experience.  The OCCC is the exclusive provider of electricity (24-hour power at no additional cost), aerial rigging and lighting, water, natural gas and propane, compressed air, and cable TV services. Convenience The Center is at the epicenter of the destination, with an abundance of hotels, restaurants, and attractions within walking distance. Pedestrian bridges connect both buildings to more than 5,200 rooms and is within a 15-minute drive from the Orlando International Airport. The convenience of the location goes hand-in-hand with top notch service to help meet an event’s every need. Gold Key Members The OCCC’s Gold Key Members represent the best of the best when it comes to exceptional service and exclusive benefits for clients, exhibitors and guests. The Center’s Gold Key memberships with Universal Orlando Resort, SeaWorld Orlando and Walt Disney World greatly enhance meeting planner and attendee experiences offering world-renowned venues, immersive experiences and creative resources for their events. OCCC Events: This fiscal year, the OCCC is projected to host 168 events, 1.7 million attendees, and $2.9 billion in economic impact.  The Center’s top five events during their 2022-2023 fiscal year included:  AAU Jr. National Volleyball Championships 2023 200,000 Attendees $257 Million in Economic Impact MEGACON 2023 160,000 Attendees $205 Million in Economic Impact Open Championship Series 2023 69,500 Attendees $89 Million in Economic Impact Sunshine Classic 2023 42,000 Attendees $54 Million in Economic Impact Premiere Orlando 2023 42,000 Attendees $108 Million in Economic Impact