* A review of tradeshow apparel and a discussion of proper use of the word/phrase ‘trade show’
The New Year is high season for trade shows. Though “tradeshow season” typically runs from February through April, the first two months of the year will buzz with three of the nation’s top trade shows. These include the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), the Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market, and MAGIC Market Week for the apparel trades.
By the end of February, thousands of exhibitors at the top 40 tradeshows nationwide will welcome some 500,000 attendees. If you’re an exhibitor or even an attendee, the question is: How will your brand be represented?
Some companies expect their show staff to wear matching shirts and pants. However, creating a uniform by embroidering your company name or logo on polo shirts, t-shirts, coats, jackets or outerwear can elevate your brand, create a clean, professional look, and engender camaraderie and a shared mission among the staff manning your booth or representing the company as event presenters or public speakers.
Outfitting your team, whether as exhibitors or attendees, is easy. Start with the look you’re trying to achieve. Depending on the event or market, some trade show booth staff or presenters should wear more formal button-down or oxford shirts. Polos or even stylish t-shirts are suitable at more casual events or shows.
Then, consider your colors. Some Fortune 500 companies closely police their color palate to ensure appropriate use. You should, too. Companies like LogoUp.com provide a wide array of apparel colors that can match or complement those in your logo or your company color scheme.
Finally, make sure your logo works well with embroidered apparel. If the font or lettering is too small, or the logo is too “busy,” your message could be missed by passersby.
Don’t forget the role embroidered or screen printed apparel can play in event “swag.” Caps, hats, t-shirts and polos given away as perks, gifts, awards or rewards often will be worn by recipients long after the event is a distant memory. They become powerful, almost timeless brand builders.
* About the phrase “tradeshow” or “trade show”… TheFreeDictionary.com writes that tradeshow is one word. Merriam-Webster and the AP Stylebook, the bible style guide and sourcebook for journalists nationwide, spell trade show as two words.
Whether one word or two, the right apparel can make your presence at every trade show a memorable event.