Trade Show TalesBlog

Posts Tagged ‘LED Lightboxes’

What to Expect from Classic Exhibits at EXHIBITORLIVE

February 2nd, 2019 COMMENTS

[Video Text/Transcript] Hi everyone. This is Mel at Classic Exhibits. I hope you are doing well. It’s February, and we’re three or four weeks away from EXHIBITORLIVE. And for those who just went through the brutal Polar Vortex, I’m sure four days in sunny Las Vegas can’t come soon enough.

We will be there, of course. I believe it’s our 25th year. No misses. This year, Classic will be in 20×30 double-deck. Booth #1623.

As you know, we participate in EXHIBITOR primarily to meet with our Distributor Partners. In other words — YOU. And while end-users visit us as well and we pass those leads along after the show, we are committed to spending as much time as possible with our distributors. Mostly, we want to hear from you. What are you seeing in trends? Suggestions on how Classic can assist you with design, exhibit builds, and marketing. Is there anything missing from our assortment?

This year our booth theme is “Knot Your Typical Exhibit Builder.” That’s “K.N.O.T.” You’ll see the theme, including “knot” puns throughout the space. We will even have a magician in the booth performing knot tricks. RJ, the magician, is knot your typical magic act. Yes, the puns will probably get painful at some point.

So what can you expect from Classic? More of the same, meaning lots of product innovations. For instance, this past year we launched the Gravitee One-Step Lightbox and the Mobile Meeting Pods. You’ll see examples of both in the booth. Our InCharg Charging solutions will now include wireless options, in addition to USB ports.

For us, Custom builds have expanded well beyond trade shows into retail, corporate environments, and even museum work. Our rental sales continue to soar, which shouldn’t be a surprise. Even the Sacagawea Portable line got a refresh with the addition of charging ports and a hostess shelf, features not found on any other portable hybrid.

Other trends? LED Lightboxes in every shape imaginable. Expect a significant change to our LB assembly this spring, which will make SuperNova both the strongest and easiest LB to setup in the industry. Then there’s the allure of video walls. Expect more affordable and accessible video solutions in 2019

If you would like to schedule an appointment, please let us know as soon as possible. In addition, we encourage you to visit us during the Strategic Partner hours on Tuesday and Wednesday. Those hours are always less hectic.

OK, so it’s still winter and maybe you can’t lose your winter coat just yet… but Las Vegas is just around the corner. We look forward to visiting with you. And remember, To Be or Knot to Be, That is the Question for EXHIBITORLIVE. Cheers!

For a free EXHIBITORLIVE Exhibit Hall Pass, Click on the Registration Link and enter #4044. Compliments of your friends at Classic Exhibits.

Photos of Recent LED Fabric Lightboxes

October 10th, 2018 COMMENTS

Recent Trade Show Lightbox Trends

We sometimes forget (or simply don’t recognize) how quickly trends change on the trade show floor. LED Fabric Lightboxes have been around for 5-6 years. Crude versions with muddy low-resolution graphics and hinky lights a little longer.

2018 has become “The Unofficial Year of Lightboxes.” Probably 65% of the exhibits we ship have LED lights — in a tower, backwall, counter, accent, or stem light. It’s at the point where it’s almost jarring not to see a lightbox or LED lights on an exhibit. Not all all lightboxes are equal, but I’ll save that debate for another blog post. What is true is that the fabric, the printing, and the LED lights have gotten better, depending the source/supplier, BUT it pays to do your homework.

  • How new are the dye-sublimation printers? The technology is changing rapidly
  • Does the supplier actually dye-sublimate the image or do they print directly to the fabric (cheaper, more fragile, and wrinkles)?
  • Are the lights and transformers UL approved? 
  • What is the quality of the fabric? Think H & M vs. J. Jill as an clothing example. 

Below are some examples of recent SuperNova LED lightboxes, both purchase and rental. Sadly, LED lightboxes don’t photograph well with smartphones or point and shoot cameras. You see “hotspots,” and the colors are never as vibrant as with the naked eye. However, that won’t stop us from sharing. 🙂

-Mel White
mel@classicexhibits.com
http://www.linkedin.com/in/melmwhite

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Classic Exhibits Inc. designs and manufacturers portable, modular, hybrid, and custom exhibit solutions, including SuperNova LED Lightboxes. Classic Exhibits products are represented by an extensive distributor network in North America and in select International markets. For more information, contact us at 866-652-2100 or www.classicexhibits.com.

What to Look for in an LED Lightbox Manufacturer

June 6th, 2018 COMMENTS

Rental Exhibits
Stroll through any airport, mall, event, or trade show and you’ll see hundreds of colorful LED lightboxes in every shape and size. Over the past few years, most have switched to Backlit Tension Fabric SEG Graphics. The reasons are obvious. Not only is fabric more durable than direct print graphics, but it’s also cheaper to ship and easier to maintain. And depending on the print process, the colors are vibrant and the details nearly photographic. 

It’s easy to assume that all LED lightboxes and manufacturers are similar, so the only real difference is price. Price matters of course, but there are other factors to consider.

8 Factors to Consider When Purchasing an LED Lightbox 

Hardness and Durability:  All LED Lightboxes start with an SEG aluminum frame. Every manufacturer engineers their frames using aluminum of varying hardness and durability. Less expensive lightboxes use softer aluminum because it’s cheaper. But cheaper aluminum scratches easily and tarnishes quickly. In addition, the wall thickness is often so thin that structural rigidity is compromised. For lightboxes mounted to a wall or assembled or disassembled at multiple trade shows, you will want aluminum with a 6063 specification. 6063 has better structural integrity and scratch resistant. If the supplier can’t answer that question, then you should be wary. 

Availability: Does the manufacturer have the extrusion, LED lights, hardware, and accessories in stock? And are there extrusion options depending on the situation, such as one-sided vs two-sided, freestanding vs. wall mount. What if you need multiple quantities or quick ship options? Can individual parts be purchased if they are lost or damaged? You don’t want a manufacturer who dabbles in lightboxes. 

Customization: Let’s say you need a width or height larger than the kits listed. Is it possible? If so, how complicated or expensive does it get? How about angles or shapes such as a hexagon? It’s easy to do squares and rectangles (for most manufacturers), but odd shapes and sizes are often a head-scratcher for those who only want to fulfill kits. 

Print Quality: Asking the right questions is essential. 1. Dye-sublimation printing is the best. This ensures the colors are infused into fabric, not just printed on the surface. Many suppliers brag about “fabric printing” but it’s not always dye-sublimation, which requires two steps  — printing to a paper material and then heat fusing the image to fabric. 2. Ask about the age of the printer. The dye-sublimation printer shouldn’t be more than two years old. Anything older than that means the print resolution is just OK, not photographic. 3. Just like clothing, the fabric quality can vary, which may not matter if the graphic is a throwaway and the resolution doesn’t matter.    

Sewing and Sizing:  Experienced manufacturers have this down to a science. They’ve done the calculations thousands of times with varying fabrics, and they know how to print, cut, and sew the fabric so it fits perfectly. Not too loose. Not too tight. Nothing is more frustrating than receiving a fabric graphic that doesn’t fit. 

LED Lights:  This could be a college course. Just understand the various color temperatures, lens, UL and ETL certification, module construction, etc. requires some research and patience. Like fabric, there are multiple ways to make LED lights cheaper, if cheaper is the only criteria. Skipping UL/ETL certification is shortcut. Using exposed connections or alligator clips is another. Sadly, it’s nearly impossible to know what you are getting before you get the LED lightbox. However, in this case, the old adage rarely fails, “If it’s too good to be true, then it probably isn’t.” 

Accessories: Most LED lightboxes are a one-trick pony. The are lightboxes.  That’s it. But what if you want to add shelves, an iPad, a literature holder, wings or headers? What if you want to connect it to other lightboxes or create a full inline or island display. That requires and exhibit builder who has engineered the extrusion to be multi-functional, stocks lightbox accessories, and has the in-house talent to customize. 

Assembly and Packaging: It’s easy to assume that your display will ship in high-quality cases and packaging. Sadly, that’s rarely true. Most manufacturers use disposable one-way shipping materials. Your lightbox arrives undamaged. Now you have to ship it to the next show or to another location, but there’s nothing to protect it or keep it organized. Insist on reusable shipping materials, which precludes cardboard, shrink wrap, and thin foam. All three will be destroyed after one use. See examples. While you may have to pay a little more, it’s an investment that keeps giving show after show, assembly after assembly.  

It’s important to remember that the pretty image you see on a website is just a rendering. What you receive is not. Ask the right questions and purchase your lightbox from a vendor you trust. Remember, your “may” be able to return the hardware, but the graphics, it’s yours whether you like it or not. Finally, keep in mind that you are buying a design, a marketing structure that represents your brand. It’s more than just an aluminum frame with graphics. 

–Mel White
mel@classicexhibits.com
http://www.linkedin.com/in/melmwhite

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Classic Exhibits Inc. designs and manufacturers portable, modular, hybrid, and custom exhibit solutions, including SuperNova LED Lightboxes. Classic Exhibits products are represented by an extensive distributor network in North America and in select International markets. For more information, contact us at 866-652-2100 or www.classicexhibits.com.

 

SuperNova™ Lightboxes and Exhibits — Summer Sales Tips #2

June 6th, 2017 COMMENTS

Outperform the Competition

Not all LED lightboxes are created equal. Most use low quality aluminum extrusion, inferior LED modules, and low resolution fabric printing.  SuperNova™ Lightboxes are the exception. SuperNova Lightboxes are exceptionally durable. Our propriety LED modules outperform the competition. And, we use only HD or 4K dye-sublimation printing for vibrant colors and details.

To download the unbranded PDF version for the SuperNova Sales Tips, click here. To listen to the special audio clip, click here.

SuperNova LED Lightboxes from Classic Exhibits

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Classic Exhibits Inc. designs and manufacturers portable, modular, and custom-hybrid exhibit solutions. Classic Exhibits products are represented by an extensive distributor network in North America and in select International markets. For more information, contact us at 866-652-2100 or www.classicexhibits.com.

EXHIBITORLIVE | Get the Skinny from Classic Exhibits

February 9th, 2017 COMMENTS

EXHIBITORBlogHeadervs2

March 12-16 at Mandalay Bay

I don’t know about you, but we are delighted EXHIBITORLIVE is a bit later this year. It was a crazy January at Classic Exhibits, and February has already gotten even wackier with designs, quotes, and orders. Thanks for all the business.

So, what can you expect from Classic Exhibits at EXHIBITORLIVE? [All future references to the show will be “EL.” If I have to type all caps and then change LIVE to italics again, I will lose my friggin’ mind]. As a reminder, the show runs from March 12-16 at Mandalay Bay. Or translated, March 13-15, which is the show hall dates. I’m never quite sure what anyone is doing on Thursday, except packing their exhibit, but there must be classes, seminars, and stuff going on somewhere. It just doesn’t apply to me, so I don’t care. 😉

You can get a FREE Show Hall pass by using code #4044. Use it or not. EXHIBITOR hypes the codes to exhibitors. Supposedly we can win a 10 ft space next year by having the most people use our code. Hmmm… I’m sure it’s legitimate. I’ve just never heard anyone boast about their free 10 ft. EL space.

According to Kevin, this is our 23rd year as an exhibitor. Even after 9/11 and throughout The Great Recession, we participated and supported the industry (a pat on the back to us). Location:  #1645 in a 20 x 30 space. Same spot as the past three years. Our neighbors change, but we stay. Not quite sure what that says about us.

GK-2002dOur main focus will be the Gravitee One-Step Modular System. Gravitee sales have soared the past six months, both for purchase and rentals, but like all new products, distributors need to see and touch it. Here’s your chance to see me demo it 1587 times over the course of three days. Connect. Plunge. Stack. Connect. 90 Degree. Adjustable Hinge. End Cap. Believe me, I’ve got it down to a Vaudeville act at this point, minus the burlesque show. It’s pretty impressive actually. The system… Not my presentation.

We’ll also show our Charging Station designs. These keep evolving based on your requests. Frankly, it’s been a lot of fun seeing how this category has grown and changed. The same point could be made for LED Lightboxes. So many leave our building everyday, both single and double-sided, in a variety of shapes. Recently, we are experimenting and selling programmable RGB lights. This is a situation where graphic design is a step behind the light technology, but once graphic designers understand what can be done, you will see some pretty exciting visual effects.

image6As you may know, Classic Exhibits has supported EL’s Portable Modular Awards since its inception. This year, we have five finalists. The awards ceremony will be held Tuesday at the conclusion of the show hall hours (3:30 pm). We would love for you to be our guest. There’s no charge (which is one reason we’re so graciously inviting you to be “our guest”).

All kidding aside, we encourage you to attend and vote for the PMA People’s Choice Award. EL will only continue to support this program as long as attendees see it as valuable. We believe, as we hope you do too, that portable modular design should be recognized in our industry. Please attend and celebrate all the nominees and winners.

Finally, we will be serving sweet treats in our booth this year. It’s not candy. And it’s only marginally healthy. But it’s for a good cause and comes around only once a year. We promise to have ALL your favorite flavors. That’s all the hints you get.

See you at EL. Don’t forget about Strategic Partner Hours on Tuesday and Wednesday, beginning at 10 am.

–Mel White
mel@classicexhibits.com
http://www.linkedin.com/in/melmwhite
https://twitter.com/melmwhite
https://www.facebook.com/Classic-Exhibits-Inc-113601405319757