Make that space count: maximum exhibition stand impact

Traditionally, exhibition stands were carbon copies of one another with simple branding; a table and chairs and a few brochures. Today, exhibitors are learning to integrate a “creative twist” into their stand designs in order to break through the clutter of endless companies and exhibitors competing for consumer attention and buy-in.
“Your stand needs to be eye-catching to entice the visitors, playing on their curiosity, and driving them to your stand to find out what you're about. After all, that is why you are there - to get people to stop, talk, look, listen, take, buy...” says Etienne Erasmus, director at Rain Productions, a modernised 3D design studio based in Johannesburg.

Exhibitors are beginning to realise that in today's fast-moving world, consumers are both knowledgeable and empowered. They want effective and imaginative solutions from exhibitors that are relevant, creative and memorable. Therefore the focus has turned from merely having a presence at an exhibition, such as Markex, to designing a stand so that visitors get as much information and experience as possible in the shortest time. Etienne points out that practicality of the stand is essential to ensuring the space is inviting so people will feel welcome and comfortable to approach you. Practicality also lends to improving the flow of traffic in and out of your stand, maximizing the amount of visitors you can see in a day.

In seeking to meet these requirements, Rain Productions has broadened its horizons, moving beyond the standard corporate eventing/design services to offer experiential marketing services, including custom exhibition stands and carry-through of corporate identity into interior design of offices, restaurants, etc.

“Stand design needs to correspond with your brand and ensure that a simple, clear brand image is created. Visitors need to leave, for example Markex, with a sense of having experienced what your brand is about and, most importantly, remembering your stand and your brand above all others,” explains Etienne.

Rain Productions has worked closely with professionals in the exhibitions industry on various projects, and know a few tricks that would prove useful in ensuring maximum exhibition stand impact on a minimal budget. Emile Erasmus, Creative Director at Rain Productions, suggests, “In business to business events, the objective is typically to obtain every business card that passes your stand. Use something simple yet practical, such as emptying out light bulbs and linking them together suspended in front of a screen to use as holders for comment cards or business cards, making the process of handing over your details a little more exciting.”

Important considerations in exhibition stands are lighting, noise, ease of information dissemination and use of colour, Etienne adds. “When designing your stand, keep in mind that you are trying to attract attention, therefore it is important that you use as much originality as possible: but try not to over-do it.”

The belief at Rain Productions is that by offering an integrated conceptual and design facility, the company is able to better meet clients' needs, whether they are strictly design related or extend into other experiential fields. The intention is that Rain Productions will be viewed as a complete experiential design company, providing tailored solutions for every client.

For more information about the company, visit

4 May 2009 13:04