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Top 10 Products You Need for Your Tradeshow Setup

The ancient Roman philosopher Seneca supposedly said, “Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.” He certainly wasn’t talking about tradeshows, but it feels like he could have been. These events are a crucial part of marketing for many companies. Knowing which products you need for your tradeshow setup is how you prepare to take advantage of the opportunity.

At DRSi, we serve companies throughout the Seattle area by meeting their professional printing needs. From promotional gear to marketing collateral to large-format items, we create and deliver what you need for your tradeshow display. Reach out today for a personalized quote.

Consider Your Location and Audience

Preparing for conferences and tradeshows requires doing your due diligence because all events are not created equal. The most important information to know is where your booth will be in the space. 

Some events are in vast spaces, and others are in cramped libraries. Ask the coordinator for a floor plan and booth parameters so that you know how to plan your display. 

  • Is your booth going to be indoors or outdoors?
  • Will you have a wall behind you for displaying signage?
  • How far can your booth display extend into the traffic flow?
  • Is your booth viewable from the front and back?
  • Which companies will be your “neighbors”?
Pull up banner DRSi

Answering these questions will help you determine the products you need for your tradeshow event. 

In addition to gathering information on the space, it’s also critical to understand who will be attending. Talk with the planner and research the tradeshow to determine who might be walking past your booth. Knowing data such as their age range and industries will help you craft a display that speaks to the attendees.

10 Essential Products You Need for Your Tradeshow Booth

To take advantage of Seneca’s definition of luck when you’re at an event, you need to be prepared. Tradeshows and conferences are often fast-paced and chaotic, so a high level of readiness is crucial. 

These are the top ten things you need for your booth display.

1. Tables and Table Coverings

Having a spot to place all your marketing and promotional items is the first thing you need. Depending on the layout of your space, you may want more than one table. Some people choose to have their table at the front of their display, while others run it along the side.

No matter how you arrange your tables, be sure to have branded table covers for a cohesive look. You can choose full coverings or table runners, depending on your budget. 

Adding some professionally-printed tabletop signs is another way to communicate with your audience. Or consider using presentation boards for a beautiful visual display that will draw attendees to your booth. These affordable boards use high-quality materials to present graphics and photos in a visually impactful way.

2. Backdrop

Your backdrop is one of the most critical products you need for your tradeshow booth. It helps define your space and differentiate you from your event “neighbors.” 

Knowing your space’s exact layout and parameters is crucial for this piece. If you won’t have a wall suitable for hanging something on, you will need hardware to hold your backdrop. Many large-format printers have these available to purchase or rent. If you will have a wall, be sure to bring the necessary items to hang the backdrop.

Talk with your print shop to see which of these options will work best for your booth display:

  • Step and Repeat Backdrop – Hanging or with Hardware Frame
  • Curved Wall Backdrop
  • Straight Wall Backdrop

3. Large-Format Signage

You need to stand out from the crowd at conferences and tradeshows to stop traffic at your booth. Items such as feather signs, fabric banners and A-frame signs are perfect for catching the attendees’ eyes and communicating your offer.

Printed banners are a staple of tradeshow booth displays since they draw the eye and are available in many sizes. Be sure to work with a printer that uses sturdy materials ready to serve you for a long time. If your event is outdoors, a mesh banner may be appropriate. This product is for use on chain link fences with printing visible from both sides.

Tradeshow table cloth DRSi

4. Messaging Materials

Once you have potential clients stopping to chat, you need marketing collateral to hand out to them. Brochures, business cards, flyers, coupons and presentation folders help keep you top-of-mind and ensure that people have a way to follow up with you.

Since these items are things businesses often have on hand, many people mistakenly assume they have plenty. Be sure to check your supply well in advance in case it’s time to place a new order before the event.

In addition to this marketing collateral, be sure your team has all the business forms they will need. Sales receipts, application forms and intake forms are typical products for tradeshow setups.

5. Promotional Items

Let’s be honest. Adults at tradeshows aren’t drastically different from kids at a birthday party. They all want goody bags. 

Promotional items are some of the top products you need for your tradeshow or conference. They help get your name out into the world and keep you in the minds of your potential customers. 

Ideally, promotional materials are items that people will want to use. Some of the most popular choices include:

6. Pop-Up Tent

If your event is outdoors, you need a pop-up tent. The odds of having ideal weather are slim, and the tent will help protect you and your items. 

Some tradeshows have enough space indoors to use a pop-up tent, too. It can be a great way to stand out from the crowd a little more. And with marketing, any little bit helps.

7. Branded Clothing

Help your team be the ambassadors you need them to be by having branded t-shirts, polos or jackets for everyone. These items give your booth a unified look and keep your company’s name in circulation while your employees mingle and wander around the event.  

Pro Tip: Remind everyone of your policies regarding behavior at these events. You don’t need your business name on the back of someone who isn’t representing you well.

8. Power Strip and Extension Cord

If your display will include anything that requires power, pack a power strip and extension cords. And be sure you confirm with the event planner that you will be near an outlet. Also, remind your staff to bring any chargers or cables they need for laptops and personal devices.

promotional mug DRSi

9. Tackle Box

This one may sound a little strange, but veteran tradeshow vendors often rely on a tacklebox as one of their must-have items. The small compartments allow you to keep all kinds of things that could come in handy. 

Everything from sticky notes to safety pins to binder clips might be helpful as you set up your booth display. Many experienced tradeshow crews also include batteries, push pins, and pliers. And no kit is complete without duct tape. Trust us. You will most likely need it.

10. Snacks

Tradeshows can be exhausting, and it’s not always easy to get a break from your booth to get food. Be sure you have plenty of snacks and water to keep your team fueled and ready to shine. 

Along the same lines, consider having a basket of snacks for attendees to grab when they visit your space. Individually wrapped items like granola bars are an excellent choice. And chocolates are usually pretty popular, too. Avoid common allergies like nuts, and check with the event planner first to ensure there aren’t rules against offering food items.

DRSi Expert Tradeshow Printing

Our Seattle-based company has been serving businesses for 30 years. DRSi takes a collaborative approach with our clients to build long-term relationships. It’s a privilege to supply high-quality printed materials that make your brand stand out from the rest. 

For event signage and day-to-day print needs, reach out to our team for a quote and to get your project started. 

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