Serving the Greater Portland Area for Over 25 Years
Sebago Sign Works & Vehicle Advertisting
Sebago Sign Works & Vehicle Advertisting
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Trade Show 101: Set Yourself Up for a Successful Event

Trade shows events are great business opportunities because they bring together members of a particular industry in one, centralized location. Trade show attendees have chosen to be there based on their interests, so you have a captive AND pre-qualified audience! Anyone in sales knows this is an ideal environment to find new customers.

Make your trade show display a confident introduction to your business.

A trade show will give you a chance to display, demonstrate, and discuss your latest products and services. The trick is to set up a booth display that makes you look like a top-notch professional and expert in your industry. You also need a booth that is interesting enough to capture attention and draw in passersby when they may have hundreds of booths to choose from.

You have less time than it is taking you to read this sentence for a trade show attendee to decide whether she or he will spend any time at your booth exhibit.

Going cheap is always a BIG mistake.

A trade show is NOT the place for homemade signs or cheap general displays that aren’t branded to your business. You don’t want your booth to look like a pathetic hodgepodge of signs and handouts. When a trade show booth looks haphazard and unprofessional, people are not impressed and walk right on by. Having your display elements done by a professional company is worth the investment.

Pinching pennies on the things that characterize your organization’s image is always far more of an expense than any money it saves. Saving money on graphics is shown to actually cost you money. If you are skimping on what your own business image, how important do you hold your customer’s interests? You are handing your competitors who are presenting themselves more confidently and professionally the business.

Here are our tips for a trade show booth must-haves to grab attention:

trade show

Signs & Banners

We know it takes only seconds to make a first impression. Your trade show signage is that first impression! Make sure your signs and booth displays look impressive, interesting and professional. They are sending the first message about you and your business.

Make sure your branding and logo are hanging high and clearly visible so everyone can see it. Stand back from your booth on all sides and check to make sure your company name is visible and readable from all directions.

There are so many sign options and ways to display your business at a trade show booth:

trade show
  • Vinyl Banners
  • Retractable Banners
  • Pop-Up Displays
  • Flags
  • A-Frame Signs
  • Tablecloths & Runners
  • Table Displays & Information Holders
  • Tabletop Signs
  • Crowd Control Barriers

Business Cards

Always have something branded with your contact information on it to hand out to people. Business cards are still the staple, offering people a small, easy way to take away your business contact information. They will help visitors remember and engage with you long-term. As clever as some of the newer styles and sized business cards can be, we find that standard sized cards are preferred.


Having extra information about your business on hand is perfect for visitors who need your business, or people you have a chance to speak with. Brochures are effective because they are cost-effective, easily branded, and can include lots of information. Besides explaining your products and services in further detail, add something helpful to your brochure like a checklist or tips so people will keep them.

Takeaways & Handouts

Beyond brochures, you may have some company information or helpful takeaways that you want to have on hand to give to people who are particularly interested in you. This may be your Annual Report, a guidebook of some sort, or other informative material. Be sure your branding, logo and contact information is on anything you may send away with someone!

Looking your best means you DO your best for customers!

trade show


Everyone attending a trade show expects to leave with a bag of free goodies. While this can seem unoriginal, trade show visitors still expect something fun to take with them. The upside is that they are taking something along they will hopefully use and keep with your branding on it to remember your company by. Get creative with your swag (please, no coffee cups!) and find something that can help them in their office like sticky notes or a webcam cover.

Product Labels

Make sure your products and any packaging you have is consistent with your other branding. When everything matches you look extra serious and professional.

The bottom line – NOTHING leaves your booth without your logo and branding on it!

Sebago Signworks is Here to Make Your Booth POP

Ready to jump ahead of the competition at trade shows or promotional events? We offer fully customizable trade show signage, booth displays and promotional materials to give you the edge.

Our professional graphic designers will work with you to create a professional, matching look across your entire trade show booth design. From fencing, large backdrops and banners to small signage and tabletop displays, we can create a snazzy look for your organization’s booth. Contact Us to discuss how to make your next trade show your best yet!

With a cohesive, professional trade show booth display, you can approach every interaction with confidence that will get you taken seriously and noticed.