Trade Show TalesBlog

Posts Tagged ‘LED Lightboxes’

PP (Post Pandemic) Trade Show Design Trends

May 12th, 2021 COMMENTS

Last summer, we “predicted” (5) post-pandemic display trends (based on hunches, educated guesses, and a six pack of PBR tall boys). So… how well did we do?

What We’re Seeing:

  1. Graphics – Not surprising. Mostly for smaller displays; however we anticipate larger graphic orders in Q3 & Q4 as exhibitors dust-off their storage properties.  
  2. Portables – We expected the new Symphony Portable System to do well. However not this well. What’s even more shocking… it’s being driven by end-users who specifically ask for Symphony.
  3. Rentals – We predicted far more inline than island requests. We’re seeing more islands than inlines. Very encouraging!
  4. Custom Modular (and Lightboxes) – The eager beaver exhibitors are driving this. Since shows are still evolving, exhibitors are forced to be flexible. As a result, we’re seeing a significant interest in Gravitee Modular Wall designs and SuperNova Lightboxes (both tool-less and modular).
  5. Pandemic – It would end by September 2020. 😉

Well, #5 was a swing and a miss. And #3 is very encouraging. All the others are spot on!

I asked Edie Arambula, Classic’s Customer Service Manager, and Jim Shelman, GM Classic Rental Solutions, to share what Classic Distributors have requested over the past two weeks. We thought you might find the trends interesting.

Symphony Portable Displays

Custom Modular (and Lightboxes)

Rental Islands

Rental Inlines

Are you seeing any other trends?  If so, let us know so we can share with our sales, project management, and design teams.

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

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Based in Portland, Oregon, 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.

Virtual Exhibits, Together Again Expo, and ClassicMODUL Extrusions | August 2020 Newsletter

August 24th, 2020 COMMENTS

Virtual Virtual Virtual 

Virtual Exhibits and Displays

It’s new. It’s confusing. It’s a little scary. But no one expects you to be an expert on virtual exhibits. You do, however, need to understand the basics. Let us help. 

  1. Last Tuesday, Kevin and Katina covered virtual exhibits in a detailed webinar. If you were unable to attend the live event, here’s the recorded version.
  2. We’ve added three virtual exhibit examples to Exhibit Design Search. Explore one inline and two islands. Then share them with clients who are anxious about the virtual exhibit they desperately need for their fall shows. 
  3. Every day we present virtual exhibits to distributors and their clients. EVERY SINGLE DAY. Don’t go it alone. We know the questions to ask and the answers to your client’s concerns. Invite us to participate in those calls and presentations. 

 Even if the pandemic subsides in two or three months, virtual exhibits, virtual trade shows, and hybrid events are now a permanent tool in the event and trade show toolbox. Capiche?

Together Again Expo

Together Again Expo

By now, you know that TAE was held in Orlando and that it went well. No surprises. No drama. Kevin, Katina, and Jen attended on behalf of Classic Exhibits. For those who were unable to attend in-person, here’s the recorded session

In addition, Kevin was interviewed by both Marlys Arnold and Tim Patterson on their vlogs about his TAE experience:  

What’s Selling?

Safety Dividers and Barriers

“So what’s selling?” We hear that question a lot.  

  1. Safety Dividers. Most are customized solutions for offices, schools, banks, government buildings, and medical facilities.
  2. Cubicle Height Extenders. We receive requests and orders nearly every day in all three colors: silver, black, and white. 
  3. Hand Sanitizer Stands and Dispensers. The crazy “gotta have 20 right now” is over. Customers now order one and two, especially the MOD-9004 and MOD-9009 versions.
  4. LED Lightboxes and SEG Frames. Not for trade shows, but for corporate and retail environments. Mostly wall-mounted frames. 
  5. Virtual Exhibits. This shouldn’t surprise you as exhibitors adapt to virtual trade shows in Q3 and Q4. 
  6. Exhibit Design. Not every exhibitor is sitting on their hands. Many are anticipating a return to live trade shows and asking for designs. They want to finalize their design, even if they wait to order until later in the year.

A Not-So-Hidden Website

ClassicMODUL Aluminum Extrusions for Safety Dividers

You ask us about aluminum extrusions ALL THE TIME. Like shapes, sizes, compatible accessories, and if the .dxf file of a specific extrusion is available to download.  We’re happy to provide you with that information but, we would be lying if we didn’t sigh a little when you ask. Why? Because it’s available online.  Many Classic distributors have never visited www.classicmodul.com which has been active since 2005. It’s time to correct that. Here’s what you’ll find there: 

  • Profiles like Squares, Rounds, and Rectangles
  • SEG, Lightbox, and Gravitee Profiles
  • Photos and Dimension Drawings
  • .DXF files
  • Accessories
  • Notes
  • Online Digital Catalog (PDF) 

Two examples: the Z 45 and S 40 are pretty common extrusions for safety dividers.  Do we still want you to call us when you have an extrusion question? Absolutely! After all, the CM website doesn’t have pricing, availability or lead times. But, if you just need to see your options or download a CAD file, then head to the ClassicMODUL website first

An Introduction to Virtual Exhibits

What to Look for in an LED Lightbox Manufacturer

January 15th, 2020 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, and the only real difference is price. Price matters of course, but there are other factors to consider.

9 Factors to Consider When Purchasing an LED Lightbox 

#1. 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. 

#2. 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. 

#3. 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. 

#4. 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.    

#5. 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. 

#6. 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.” 

#7. 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. 

#8. 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.  

#9. Assembly:  It’s easy to overlook how the lightbox will be assembled but that would be a HUGE MISTAKE. Some require tools and a bag of loose parts. Others have push-button connectors. Others are “mostly” tool-less, but the hardware is cumbersome and/or unnecessarily complicated. Ask to see the instructions or an assembly video. Even if you aren’t planning to assemble it, could you put it together based on the instructions in a reasonable amount of time? Remember, time is money, especially on the show floor. No one wants surprises at a trade show, and a well-designed lightbox won’t make you sweat, literally or figuratively. Do the research and trust your gut.

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, you “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 Tool-Less LED Lightbox Video

September 17th, 2019 COMMENTS

SuperNova™ LED Lightboxes with SEG Fabric Graphics feature fast, tool-free assembly. The aluminum extrusion frames assemble with knobs, using both slide and corner connectors. Single and double-side lightboxes are available in standard and custom sizes.

Ask about shelving, literature holders, and tablet attachment options.

SuperNova Includes:

  • Attached UL-approved LED Modules
  • ColorTrue LED Lights
  • Durable 6063/6065 T6 Aluminum
  • Translucent Knobs (no shadows)
  • HD Silicone Edge Fabric Graphics
  • Single and Double-sided Frames
  • Standard and Custom Sizes
  • Lifetime Warranty on Workmanship
  • Reusable Packaging
  • Purchase and Rental Options
  • Custom and Portable Options
  • Tool-Less Assembly

Since 1993, Classic Exhibits has been North America’s leading builder of quality trade show exhibits for professional exhibitors. Browse through 1500 contemporary displays or request a custom design personalized to your trade show marketing goals.

Find success on the trade show floor with an exhibit that reflects your marketing message… at a price that will make your CFO giddy. For more information, see http://www.classicexhibits.com.

SuperNova Lightbox: Adjustable Tablet Mount

August 26th, 2019 COMMENTS

LED Lightboxes should be more than just a pretty face. They should also be functional. SuperNova Lightboxes already have single or double-side shelving options. See MOD-1615, 1616, 1617, and 1618 for examples. We’re delighted to add another practical feature.

Announcing the new MOD-1375 Adjustable Tablet Mount for iPad, Surface, and other tablets. The mounts are ideal for conducting surveys, lead retrieval, or simple web navigation. The mounts attach directly to the lightbox and can be positioned either inside or outside the LB frame.

In addition, the mounts adjust vertically without tools. As with all Port/Land tablet enclosures, the tablets swivel from portrait to landscape within a 180 degree rotation. See the video below or click here for more details.