Never underestimate the value of a well-lit trade show exhibit.
Creative lighting for your trade show booth is sure to lure more visitors. On the other hand, a poorly lit exhibit detracts from the trade show exhibit space and can leave it largely ignored.
Your trade show lighting professional can use dramatic illumination techniques to create a show-stopping effect or simply use lighting to highlight graphics and/or products.
It is essential for the lighting designer to know the exhibitor’s goals, exhibit design, and budget before presenting lighting options. Once this is established, the trade show lighting professional can offer multiple options to maximize the visual appeal of the exhibit display.
Through innovative use of different types of lighting, a trade show booth can achieve completely different looks, effects, and moods. Lighting choices include (but aren’t limited to):
• A simple clamp-on arm
• High-quality fluorescent lighting
• Track or rail lighting
• Recessed lighting
• Fully programmable, changing-color LED lighting
Each of these forms of illumination serves a different purpose. The selection of the proper lighting product should be based on what effect the exhibitor desires to achieve.
For example, in the more decorative trade show booth, using tension fabric and fully programmable, changing-color LED lighting creates a dynamic, dramatic effect that is certain to draw the attention of trade show attendees.
For a clean appearance in the same trade show booth, very white fluorescent lighting works well. If, however, dramatic shadows are desired, certain types of targeted track lighting may be preferred. Quality clamp-on arm lights can be versatile enough to deliver good white light on focal points or to wash lighting evenly on backwalls. High-quality white light ensures colors and graphics are accurately displayed. Since light can also alter color, it’s essential that your white light renders consistent and true color.
When searching for the right lighting effect, there are a number of price options that can help you reach your goals. Be mindful that there are trade show booth rental options available for very high-end lighting that may be an appropriate way to satisfy your trade show budget constraints.
Rob Cohen, Vice President/Owner of Display Supply & Lighting, Inc. of Itasca, Illinois, offers examples of how a professional trade show lighting company can help you avoid two of the more common exhibit mistakes, which are:
1. Being unaware of the event space’s requirements and restrictions.
Be aware of the electrical codes, capabilities, and constraints in the exhibit hall. Find out in advance what is allowed and disallowed to meet local lighting requirements. For example, a trade show space might require three-wire grounded plugs on all lighting fixtures. These fixtures are not commonly available at large-volume box stores.
2. Not scoping out the location of your site before the show.
This is important as not all types of light bulbs are allowed in some facilities. Some regulations restrict a few major conference facilities from using certain types of light bulbs, usually for safety reasons. Rob Cohen says it is critical that your exhibit house either understand their lighting options or have a relationship with a company that can advise them on trade show lighting opportunities and concerns.
Lighting can either attract visitors to your trade show booth—or it can not. It is best to know what your exhibit display emphasis is and what your lighting options are before you design a lighting system for your trade show display.