Monthly Archives: February 2015

How to Make an Impact When Speaking at a Trade Show

nametag_istockSpeaking at a trade show can help get you and your brand noticed, but it does take ample preparation. Discussing a topic that you are well informed about can help boost your company’s reputation and identify your business as an expert in the field. Preparing to talk in front of a room with a large number of your peers and colleagues can be overwhelming and nerve-wracking. We have broken down the steps of how you should approach giving a lecture at a convention and what you should do to ensure your presentation is professional and well-received.

Pick a Show: Choosing the right convention at which to speak is important to effectively connecting with your target audience and proving yourself an expert in your field. When evaluating a show, consider who the attendees are and what you wish to achieve by reaching them. Clearly identify what you desire to get out of speaking at a conference—whether it is an increase in business or a reputation as being one of the leaders in your industry. Identify your goals, research shows in your field and choose one that will best help you achieve your objectives from speaking at the conference.

Identify What Topic Best Suits You: It is important that you appear knowledgeable about the topic you decide to speak about at an expo. Play upon your particular strengths and then continue to research your topic to beef up your expertise. Does the idea of being on stage in front of your peers make you petrified? It is normal to be a little nervous when speaking in front of a crowd but if it causes you extreme anxiety, it may be best to decide not to participate in a discussion. Practice your speech and research tips on effective public speaking. You will not be able to please everyone at the show and there will be some individuals who will disagree with you. Be prepared for others to voice their disagreements or even heckle you or your ideas during your speech. Brainstorm what your opponents might bring up to invalidate you and then have a plan of attack if it does happen. Remember, the more knowledgeable you are about your topic the more your peers will respect you, even if they don’t agree with you.checkmark_istock

Non-Promotional Introduction: Shameless self-promotion is frowned upon when giving a talk at a convention but it is important that you sprinkle your speech with relevant branding tidbits about your company. Provide important information about your company as it relates to your topic of discussion and illustrate how your business has positively affected your customers and those connected to your speech’s theme. Then, show your audience how the products and services your business offers can benefit them as well.

Use Slides and Case Studies: Slide shows make it easy for attendees to visualize the contents of your discussion. Some expos upload the slides so they are downloadable files that attendees can reference later. Include your Twitter handle on the slides so you can get some traction if attendees post a slide and connect it to your brand. This also makes tracking who was at your discussion a little bit easier to do. Use real case studies and actual data when possible to effectively show how your brand has helped your clients and relate it to how your business can assist the audience as well. Identifying specific examples that are real also helps build up your credibility as a speaker and accurately credits your company when acknowledgement is appropriate.

Provide Your Contact Information: It is obvious, but sometimes overlooked that you need to provide multiple ways for individuals to contact you repeatedly throughout your convention talk. Include your name, job title, company name and contact details in the first and last slides of your presentation. Briefly describe what your company does but do not go into too much detail, since it could be seen as self-promotion. Some attendees may feel out of place introducing themselves directly after your talk so providing your email or phone number may be an easier way for them to reach out to you.Group Of Multi-Ethnic People's Arms Outstretched In A White Back

For more information on how you can best represent your brand when deciding to be a speaker at an expo in your given field, check out Adam Riemer’s recent article “How to Build Business While Speaking at Conferences”. For all of your signage and display needs to promote brand recognition and access the attention of attendees at a crowded trade show, contact TRT Banners today!

Escape the Winter Doldrums: Redecorate with Custom Prints

Snow-blower-istockHarsh winds, frigid temperatures and mounds of snow and ice force many to stay indoors throughout the winter season. The unwelcoming weather can easily bring on cabin fever, which consequently can lead to a case of the winter blues. Staring at four blank walls won’t help you put some pep in your step, which is why focusing on interior decorating can help brighten your mood. To customize any room in your home or office, hang personalized prints or wall decals within your dreary interior space. Metal, canvas and fabric prints, as well as wall adhesive stickers, can easily dress up boring walls with images of serene landscapes, photos of loved ones or special occasions, or your favorite classic works of art.

Custom prints, whether on fabric, canvas, metal or adhesive vinyl, are printed using high-quality large format digital printers for intense, life-like replications of a customer’s custom graphics. Adhesive wall vinyl and canvas materials are often printed with a digital printer so the inks will not run or fade over time for a long-lasting piece of decorative art. Another top-of-the-line printing process called dye sublimation is used to create custom personal prints on fabric and metal substrates. A digital print is created on a transfer paper as a mirror or reverse image of the original. The transfer print is then inserted into an intense heat press with the chosen substrate so the inks permeate the fibers of the material. The result is a vivid and precise printed graphic output in which the inks become a part of the substrate, instead of merely being laid on top of it like traditional printing methods such as screen printing.

Adding printed pictures to your dining room, guest bedroom or even your office at work is an easy and instant way to make yourself feel comfortable in your space and showcase treasured family photos that will bring a smile to your face. Fabric and canvas prints are ideal for interior decorating purposes because they can be easily gallery-wrapped onto a wooden frame and hung on a flat surface effortlessly. Canvas prints have become increasingly popular over the years due to the affordability of the display versus other traditional paintings and wall decorations, as well as the vibrant and crisp digital reproduction they are capable of. Metal prints can also be easily attached to an interior, or exterior, wall by tacking or framing the print and mounting it to the flat surface.Wall-Decor

Removable wall decals are a fun and versatile way to add decorations to any flat, hard surface within your home or office building. The adhesive vinyl stickers can be repositioned on a wall numerous times without leaving a residue on the surface or damaging the decals. Ideal for adding fun cartoon characters to a child’s nursery or bedroom or creating an interesting play area for kids in the basement, wall stickers can be used in a variety of ways. The decals are available in a selection of sizes, as are the canvas, fabric and metal prints, and can be often purchased or customized as a cut-out to create life-like figures or characters on the walls of your personal or professional space.

Custom prints and wall décor offer great benefits because they can be customized with your own personal graphics and are available in a variety of sizes to suit your open wall space. They can be removed or repositioned at any time and are often a more economical way to decorate a room than traditional décor like paintings or sculptural hanging art. Canvas, metal or fabric prints, as well as adhesive wall stickers, make memorable and personal presents for holidays, anniversaries or any special occasion in a loved one’s life.

Winter DrivingEscape from the bitter cold and retreat inside to your home or office decorated with custom canvas, fabric or metal prints, and even wall stickers! Don’t forget to check out TRT Banners’ complete list of custom banners, poster stands, fabric flags and much more!

Designing 101: How to Create Custom Banner Artwork

Blank-banner-stand-istockYou know that new banner stands, pop up backdrops and printed table throws will make your brand stand out at an upcoming trade show or community event. But, do you know how to create the artwork for your signage? If you are assigned with the task of creating unique banner artwork for your printed displays that will clearly portray what your company is all about and demand attention at a high-traffic venue, the pressure to deliver can be overwhelming. If it is your first time attempt at creating banner artwork or if it has been a while since the last time you created an art file and you need a refresher, read on to learn how to create an impressive and effective art file for your banner stand or trade show display.

Invest in a Design Program: First things first, it is important that you have the appropriate tools needed to create successful banner artwork. A design program like Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, or InDesign is necessary so you can effectively create a custom art file. To create an acceptable file that will fit your specific display, you will have to create the file at 100% of the size of the banner you are ordering. Or, you can double the DPI resolution and cut the file down proportionately by half to make it easier to upload the file when you purchase your signage. Programs like Word and PowerPoint will not work as design tools because in most cases you cannot customize the size of the file you are creating to match your display size.

Follow Art Specifications on Supplier’s Site: Most banner suppliers have specific artwork requirements that vary from product to product. At TRT Banners, we request that a file is created to the size of the display and at a resolution of 150 DPI. There are certain safe zones and margins that are specific to each product so we have PDF art specification sheets on each of our custom product pages to make it easier for you to make sure you are creating the art file appropriately for what you are ordering. No excess bleed is necessary and we accept jpeg, ai, eps, tiff, psd and pdf files, though we print from jpeg files.

Use High-Res Images: The resolution of the images you use to create your banner design is extremely important because if you use low-res images, your graphics will appear blurry or distorted when they are printed on your banner stand, booth backdrop or fabric flag. Be advised that most images you download from the internet are small and low resolution (usually around 72 DPI) so when your image is enlarged and printed, it will appear grainy. You can use a stock photo provider, such as iStock, to browse a large selection of copyright-free images that will have a high resolution. You will be able to choose the size photo that you want and then purchase the image from the stock photo provider to use within your banner artwork. The selection is expansive and the quality of the images will be more than adequate.

Colored-pencils-istockStay True to Your Brand: It is easy to get swept up in design trends and what your competitors are doing. Identify who you are and what your brand is all about, and then make sure that your promotional material reflects that value and image. Start with a strong logo and then build your banner design around that. Use complementary colors or bright accent hues to create a professional and cohesive showcase. Minimalize the amount of colors you use, as well as text and imagery, to present a clear and concise marketing message that your target audience will be able to identify the moment they take a look at your banner or display.Blank-booth-istock

If you need a professional eye to envision and execute your banner layout and artwork, let the experts at TRT Banners take the responsibility off of your shoulders! We have an in-house graphic design team that is experienced and talented. Let one of our designers create custom banner artwork for any of your displays for a banner design that you and your company will be proud of. The design fee is $52 per hour and it generally takes between an hour to an hour and a half to complete an original design.

Contact TRT Banners today for more tips on how to create a winning banner design or to find out more about our extensive display offerings including pull up stands, trade show booth displays, tension fabric banners, indoor/outdoor poster stands and much more!

Catalogs and the Printing Industry Are on the Rise—Invest in Brochure Holders!

With the growing reliance on technology for Multiethnic Group of People Socail Networking at Cafeinformation, professional marketing and consumer research, some question the future of printed catalogs as a tool for businesses to get their product list in front of their target audience. For decades, printed catalogs have been a staple in the marketing plans of many businesses including retail stores and other companies in the field of selling directly to the consumer. E-catalogs and comprehensive websites have provided customers access to the items they are looking for without picking up a bulky catalog, which can also serve to save a company precious advertising dollars on printed materials. However, what is the future of catalogs and should your business continue to put in the time and money to produce thousands of printed catalogs and informational print-outs for your customer base?

Though in this digital era many are quick to ring the death knell for the printing industry, recent research about the field tends to prove otherwise. In Mary Ellen Biery’s article “Don’t Print the Obituary for the Printing Industry Just Yet,” the author points to recent data released by Sageworks, which is a financial information company, that states that commercial printers and those in related fields are finding a way to increase their sales and expand their clientele. Biery cites data released by Sageworks that printing and related businesses, which include commercial/screen printers; lithographic, flexographic and gravure printers; book printers and firms that provide binding and other services, saw “improving profitability in recent years and stable financial metrics related to liquidity.” Though the factors that are driving this growth are unclear, Sageworks’ analyst Jenna Weaver suggests that it may be due to companies in the printing industry diversifying and offering services such as graphic design and shipping. Whatever the reason, the printing industry is holding strong and catalogs are still a viable means of promoting a brand and product offerings.

Book-istockUse of printed retail catalogs is seeing a resurgence after a period of decline. In Rebecca R. Ruiz’s article “Catalogs, After Years of Decline, Are Revamped for Changing Times,” the author showcases research by the Direct Marketing Association showing that the number of catalogs mailed in the U.S. increased in 2013 to 11.9 million. Many consumers still seek out and buy products from catalogs. According to the Direct Marketing Association, about 90 million Americans make purchases from catalogs and nearly 60% of that number is women. The ability to reach such a large base of current and prospective customers is the reason why many companies are not foregoing printed promotional materials. Felix Carbullido, who is the executive vice president and chief marketing officer for Williams-Sonoma brands, claims that catalogs are much more than devices for selling. Carbullido explains, “Years ago it was a selling tool, and now it’s become an inspirational source.” Many companies are using catalogs to show customers the potential of their products and create inspiration with themed catalog releases and other unique brochure ideas.

Since printed promotional materials, especially catalogs, should still be an integral part of any business’ marketing strategy, it is important to properly display your printed tools within your store or special event space. Brochure holders are an easy and effective way to showcase any printed flyers, literature and catalogs you have to offer to your customers. Lightweight and portable literature holders can be featured within your boutique or at a convention within your field. Many brochure holders are double-sided so you can make it easy for your printed materials to get in the hands of your target audience in a crowded, high-traffic area. Great as a supplemental way to give out your catalogs in addition to mailing them directly to your customer base, you can make your business’ printed materials readily available to your clients with a brochure holder at the entranceway of your store or within your exhibit booth at a special function or fundraiser.

Whether you are looking to promote your business within your store or at an upcoming event, TRT Banners has a vast selection of high-quality printed signage and display accessories that will make your marketing initiative a success. Contact us today!