Portable Exhibits: Efficient and Affordable Displays

In this age of TSA lines and increasing shipping and drayage costs, “portable” is becoming a key buzzword in the display world. Whether it’s with field reps or in show booths, portability is gaining mind-share both with corporate America and individual exhibitors who must display their wares efficiently and affordably. This trend certainly doesn’t decree death to the mega booths whose place is well secured in the trade show arena, but it does signify a growing shift toward easy and affordable.

Lighter, Faster Displays

Of course the idea of a display has always been based around some level of portability. The early systems were made from materials readily available at the time such as tri-wall or other substrates, often covered with Velcro-receptive fabric and they still perform quite well, for specific needs.

The notion of portable trade show booths is gaining mind-share both with corporate America and individual exhibitors.

Over time the evolution toward lighter and faster has gained momentum with the introduction of products like pop-up frames that collapse into themselves, and retractable banner stands that allow the graphic to be quickly retracted for transport.

Innovations have expanded into self-packing display systems that fold in seconds into briefcase or larger units with graphics still in place for fast and easy exhibiting. Today, with the advancements in all facets of the industry—including printing, electronics, fabrics, plastics, and alloys—combinations of all these products and features continue to evolve and find their way into the marketplace.

Fabric Advantage

Because of fabric’s lightweight and increasingly durable graphic capabilities, many of the newest display offerings feature its expanded usage in exciting new ways. Pop-up frames, which traditionally featured vinyl mural graphics, now often sport full mural fabric-graphics or smaller printed fabric panels attached at various angles on multiple panels designed to exhibit an assortment of messages on a single frame.

The industry has seen the development of self-packing display systems that fold in seconds.

Because the graphic also stays on the frame, (same as self-packing units), setup, breakdown, and transport are a cinch. Fabric is also being used in banner stands and other unique applications including light-weight podiums and counters as well as draped walls and expansive murals.

Evolving Innovations

A group of products achieving significant attention in today’s marketplace are the electronic message boards and integrated media players that now allow a company’s message to be conveyed in a “live” presentation format via LCDs or other methods.

With an expanding choice of new offerings arriving weekly including interactive tablets, electronic posters, and digital signage USB media players, presenters can now customize multiple messages and presentations into a “plug-n-play” format, adding expanded flexibility and impact to their booth. All indications are that this trend will continue to grow as a powerful tool to add visual impact to a display message. As dazzling as they are however, they still are typically incorporated into an overall booth/display design and do not serve as the central display.

Popular Systems

Amidst all these evolving innovations, the ever faithful tabletop systems still remain in great demand and serve a vital role in stating a company’s product and message efficiently and economically.

Retractable banner stands allow the graphic to be quickly retracted for transport.

Whether they are the newer lightweight panel systems made from extruded plastics, the ever popular self-packing styled units, pop-up frames that fit comfortably on a six-foot table, or even banner stands that can be set up at incremental heights to fill a tabletop presentation, all offer a great array of convenience and performance that make them appealing both ergonomically as well as to the budget.

Bring Your Message

With all this stated, the fact remains that the most important ingredient you will ever take to the show floor is your message. Show attendees aren’t concerned how fast you can leave the presentation or how cheap the display ships across country. Your message is the message. The clearer your display states that (whatever size it is), the more success you will achieve. Trends ebb and flow and all industries exist in a state of evolution. The ideal is to marry the best innovations with a defined end-goal and success will surely follow.