Trade Show TalesBlog

Posts Tagged ‘P5D’

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words: Word on the Street — May 2nd thru May 6th

May 6th, 2011 COMMENTS
A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

Word on the Street by Kevin Carty

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

This week, I was on the road visiting new and potential distributors for Classic and ClassicMODUL. Meeting with these folks reminded me of the power of photos in our business. Frankly, I take photos for granted since we take multiple shots of every display we build. I assume other manufacturers do the same thing. It makes sense. Photos document the order and serve as a convenient point of reference if there are questions once the exhibit arrives or several years later when the client wants to modify the design or reorder parts.

Photos are such a day-to-day occurrence for us that I’m always a little surprised by a distributor’s reaction during a presentation. During the meeting, we invariably head to Classic’s website, or if they have Exhibit Design Search, to their website. We review the product lines and/or changes and at some point, we click on the photos button either on the home page or on a Design Detail page. That’s when the magic happens.

Potential distributors are always stunned that there are photos of kits; in fact, that there are multiple photos of actual orders. Then, once we dive a little deeper, they are delighted “slash” shocked that there are literally thousands of photos dating back to September 2006 . . . and that they can search, filter, and sort these photos. The next shock comes when they realize that these photos are not hidden behind a password protected site and that the photos can be emailed from their address using the “Email Image” tool.

Some of you may know the history of Past Five Days (P5D), our photo database, but for those who don’t I’ll share it.

P5D History

Past Five Days Photos

Past Five Days Photos

On 09/23/06, we started an experiment when we launched Past Five Days (P5D). We decided to publish photos of exhibits, components, and accessories on Classic Exhibits. Mostly, we used the photos taken in our QC Setup Area, but occasionally we used photos from the Rental Setup area. We couldn’t publish every exhibit, which would be unrealistic, but we did want to show representative designs in as close to real time as possible. At the time, it seemed risky for two reasons.

  1. We would be showing exhibits, not as perfect renderings or as show photos, polished to perfection just minutes before the trade show opens, but as exhibits often without the final graphics and the client’s product accessories and collateral.
  2. We would be sharing new designs and innovations with anyone who happened to click on Past Five Days. Including our competitors. However, we quickly realized that the benefit of sharing far out weighed the risk of espionage.

Five years later, P5D seems obvious. Distributors and clients get to see photos in addition to renderings, even if those photos are of displays still in production. Renderings are the lifeblood of the exhibit design process. They allow us to illustrate concepts relatively quickly, in both the purchase and design phase.  But renderings are renderings. Photos are photos. We need to see both in order to make intelligent decisions about which display to purchase and which exhibit manufacturer to purchase from.

Many of you visit P5D at least once a week to review new projects. For those who don’t, we encourage you to take a peek once in a while. You’ll be surprised at the variety of orders flowing through our shop. Yes, there are the standards, such as Sacagawea, Magellan, and Perfect 10 kits, but you’ll also see islands, custom workstations and counters, unique Aero Hanging Sign orders, and recently, Eco-systems Sustainable projects. Plus, if you enjoy graphic design, you’ll see how others present their message . . . both successfully and occasionally, not so successfully.

Hope you all have a restful weekend.

Be well.

–Kevin Carty

Preview the NEW Peek-a-Booth Video Cameras

March 24th, 2010 2 COMMENTS
Live Web Cam from Classic Exhibits

Live Web Cam from Classic Exhibits

As a dedicated reader of the Trade Show Tales Blog, you deserve something extra. No, not money, at least not this month, but we are announcing a new feature on the Classic Exhibits website called Peek-a-Booth. An e-broadcast announcement will be sent in a few days, but as a “Preferred Reader” you deserve a sneak peek (pun intended).

As you know, we pride ourselves on “transparency” with our employees, our suppliers, and our distributors. We’re not by nature either secretive or paranoid. We believe that the more you know about our business the more likely we’ll work together to find solutions and opportunities. There’s always a danger in being open and honest, but we feel it’s worth the risk. Past Five Days is a good example. Everyday you see a sample of the exhibit and event projects passing through our facility.

We decided to take the P5D concept to the next logical step — a live video feed. We mounted two pan and zoom cameras in our Production Set-up Area. These cameras stream live video 24 hours a day. Once you enter the username and password, you can see your project (or any project) in real-time and can control each camera’s movement. Very cool!

The username will always be the same:  classicexhibits. The password changes everyday. You can obtain the current password by emailing or by contacting a Project Manager.

To preview Peek-a-Booth today (Friday, March 26, 2010), the password is: hyS2iWxZ


Please share your thoughts about this new feature. Is it valuable for you (as a distributor), and do you see it as beneficial to your customers as well?

–Mel White
Classic Exhibits Network (LinkedIn)

Exhibit Renderings Rock . . . But Photos Rule!

November 8th, 2009 COMMENTS
Magellan Miracle Portable Hybrid Display

Magellan Miracle Portable Hybrid Display

Our website, like most exhibit websites, has an abundance of renderings. It makes sense. Renderings allow our designers to show multiple exhibit designs quickly and economically. However, given a choice, nearly everyone would rather see photos over renderings. 

Portable Hybrid Displays

The fastest growing segment in the trade show exhibit industry is portable hybrids. What are portable hybrids? Click on this link for an explanation, or simply click on the two photo gallery links below. These galleries show actual orders in the Classic Exhibits Setup Area over the past six to nine months. It doesn’t include every portable hybrid ordered, nor does it show the other exhibit lines we manufacturer. If you are interested in seeing a more comprehensive photo gallery, we encourage you to visit P5D, our daily blog of photos (which goes back nearly four years). We think you’ll enjoy seeing how exhibit trends are constantly changing from season-to-season and year-to-year.

The gallery links below include designs from our Perfect 10, Perfect 20, Magellan, and Sacagawea lines. In addition, you’ll see creative examples of counters, pedestals, workstations, and kiosks.  Let us know what you like (and don’t like).

Recent Portable Hybrid Displays

Gallery 1

Gallery 2

–Mel White

Search for Exhibit Photos in P5D — New Feature

May 14th, 2009 COMMENTS
Past Five Days -- Search Thru Over 1000 Exhibit Photos

Past Five Days -- Search Over 1000 Exhibit Photos

On April 13, we posted “Past Five Days — Reviewing Photos in P5D” where we discussed the history and features of Classic’s daily photo log. Past Five Days has been a permanent feature on Classic Exhibits website, and on all distributor versions of Design Search, since September 19, 2006. Over that time, we’ve made multiple incremental improvements. Today’s improvement is anything but incremental.

New Photo Search Function

We’ve added search functionality. Now you can search the entire P5D database by size and/or keyword. We all know the expression, “A picture is worth a thousand words.” Too often, the challenge is finding the just right picture or photo. When it comes to trade show exhibit design, you may prefer renderings, but someone else in your organization may prefer photos. Now both options are available for many Classic Exhibits’ designs.

Say, for instance, you like Visionary Designs VK-1032 Hybrid Exhibit. Click here to see the rendering. “Very cool,” you say to yourself, but you wonder if there is a photo available in P5D that shows a “real” version of VK-1032. In this case, there is. Not just one, but seven separate entries for this design. Click here to see one of those photos. Not every photo will be complete with graphics. After all, those photos are taken in our Setup Area, and it’s not uncommon for us to ship displays without the graphics. The graphics may have been shipped directly to the client, or the photo was taken before the graphics were installed. It happens. Also, it’s important to remember that P5D is a sampling of orders. Not all orders. So, not every kit on Classic’s website has a corresponding photo.