Controlling Costs Checklist

May 29, 2018
Getting the Most from Trade Shows

About the author: G.A. “Andy” Marken is president of Marken Communications, Inc., Santa Clara, Calif. He can be reached by E-mail at [email protected].


Controlling Trade Show Costs

Across the country the cost of trade show services, including shipping damage, setup, tear-down, and show support have risen dramatically. It's a major concern to every manager. But you can keep costs in line and even reduce service costs by applying a little planning and attention to:

  • Pre-show preparation of the exhibit
  • Shipping procedures
  • Information follow-through
  • Rerouting evaluation
  • Rerouting procedures

The summary below should help you curtail your trade show costs.

Pre-Show Preparation of the Exhibit

  • Is the exhibit "right" for the show?
  • Does it tell the right story?
  • Are any alterations necessary?
  • Has it been inspected?
  • Is it in good condition?
  • If not, have repairs been made?

Shipping Procedures

  • Has the quickest and least expensive method of shipping been elected?
  • Has the exhibit been shipped early enough?
  • Has it been shipped via the proper carrier?

Information Follow-Through

  • Has a bill of lading been provided to those who will set up the exhibit?
  • Have the trailer number and tracing information been provided?
  • Has the case containing set-up drawings and hardware been clearly identified?
  • Have those in charge of the exhibit setup received copies of the order forms for various services?
    1. Furniture?
    2. Floor covering?
    3. Electrical?
    4. Telephone?
    5. Plumbing?
    6. Cleaning?
    7. Special orders?
    8. Other?
  • Have those who will set up the exhibit been notified the identity of the person to be in charge of the exhibit?
  • Also, where can they be reached at any time given?
  • If an exhibit service organization is being used, has the company person in charge been notified where he can reach the organization's representative?

Routing Considerations

  • Should you ship the exhibit back to the point of origin?
  • Should you store it temporarily in the city where the show is being held?
  • Should you ship to the city where it will be exhibited next?
  • Have clear instructions been given for rerouting?

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