Branding is a basic marketing
concept that is designed to set your products/services apart
from the competition. By using a particular name, phrase,
design, symbol or a combination of these, you can create a
unique identity. When choosing a brand name, consider the
following five criteria:
Branding is not a sales and
marketing gimmick. Instead it refines and defines corporate
culture and identity. A brand must have meaning to its
consumers, its organization and its employees. Brand is an
emotional link between you and your customer. It is what people
buy when they buy your product or your company. The most
important part of a brandís identity is the promise it makes to
customers. The essence of branding is simplicity and
- It should suggest
- It should be simple,
memorable, and unique.
- It should fit the image of
- It should have positive
connotations for the target market.
- It should be easy to
pronounce and to pictorialize.
Integrating Brand Awareness
Into Your Exhibit Program
Since exhibiting is a powerful extension of your companyís
advertising, promotion, public relations and sales function,
that automatically means it is an excellent way to enhance brand
awareness. Everything your company stands for, no matter how
large or small, is being exhibited on the show floor. This means
there needs to be total consistency, congruity, clarity and
focus in every aspect of your exhibiting program, before, during
and after the show.
Here are three important points to consider as you plan to
integrate brand awareness into your tradeshow program.
The following is a 10-point
checklist to act as a reminder for many of the questions you
need to ask and answer as you plan brand integration into your
- Consistency and repetition
is vital in creating brand awareness. People buy brands they
know and they trust! A brand is a promise that companies
make to their customers. Strong branding requires all the
levels of communication to agree with one another.
- Ensure all your marketing
and promotions are consistent and that they have your logo,
colors, typeface, slogans and characters. Everything you
develop should have the same look and feel.
- Peoplesí perception about
your company, products, and services is a major factor in
their choice of brand preferences and their buying behavior.
All perception is subjective and based on experience.
Individuals tend to interpret information according to
existing beliefs, attitudes, needs and mood.
Remember that branding is a process,
a business system, that fuels and sustains all customer/company
relationships! Total consistency, congruity, clarity and focus
in every aspect of your exhibiting program, before, during and
after the show are essential.
- What needs to be done to
ensure that your booth conveys total consistency, congruity,
clarity and focus of your company image and brand?
- booth size
- handouts and giveaways
- lead management
- How can your graphics work
best for you?
- can be easily seen and
read in three seconds
- use a simple and bold
- have striking and
- are instantly memorable
- use a unique size or
- reinforce your message
- make your message a
single, strong, provocative idea
- use a "Whatís in it for
- use bold colors
- What are the best
promotional activities you can use to enhance brand
Personal invitations (e.g.
with incentive and response form)
Direct mail with incentive
- trade and/or local
- local media
- websites (e.g.
company, show, association)
- broadcast faxes
- city billboards
- transit advertising
- show catalogs
- show dailies
- airport billboards,
banners/electronic message boards
- hotel closed-circuit
- hotel - on door or
in room promotion
- kiosks/banners at
- What types of PR
communications could be used?
- press releases for
local and trade publications
- personal invitations
to trade/local editors
- company newsletters
- press kits for the
- press reception
presentation at the booth
- reprints of articles
personalities/spokesperson at booth
- What sponsorship
opportunities exist and would complement your company image?
Some of the most frequent
sponsorship opportunities are:
- press room
- international lounge
- speaker or VIP room
- awards reception
- educational programs
- keynote sessions
- coffee breaks
- badge holders
- audio visual
- display computers
- tote bags
- shuttle buses
- What advertising premiums
will be consistent with your image and complement the
message you want to convey?
- usefulness and
appropriateness for your target audience
- Who are the best ambassadors
for your company - the right people to staff the booth?
- What training should they
- booth etiquette
- product knowledge
- obtaining commitment
- What is the best dress code
to convey your company image?
- What is the best way to
follow-up after the show that is consistent with your