In this time of shrinking budgets and the need to do more with less, exhibit programs are targeted for cost savings initiatives because they represent a significant part of the overall marketing budget. The challenge is reducing expenses without reducing the impact the exhibit program has on your marketing objectives.
When you are examining way to reduce costs without sacrificing ROI, consider these actions:
- Show selection and “Right-sizing” – Now is the time to re-evaluate your show schedule. Are you in the right shows? Could you reduce your exhibit size in these shows and still reach your target audience? By researching both the show demographics and what you need to reach your targets within the overall show audience, you can often eliminate shows and/or reduce your exhibit space in some of the shows. This process typically yields an 8-10% savings on exhibit space costs – thousands of dollars that make a significant difference in your overall budget.
- Research exhibit solutions that will lower your operational costs – As you plan for upcoming shows, consider ways to revise your exhibit footprint to reduce your overall budget. Utilizing newer, lighter exhibit components or renting non-essential components in the show city can dramatically reduce transportation and storage costs. Consider creating a routing plan that minimizes shipping back to primary storage facilities when shows occur back-to-back in the same region.
- Leverage advance rates and multiple show discounts – When you take a program-based approach vs. a show-by-show approach, you’ll often find ways to save money. You can often receive discounts of 15-25% by committing multiple shows or your entire schedule to a/v, transportation, carpet and furniture providers.
- Negotiate with current suppliers – If they are focused on a long-term partnership, your current suppliers should be willing to help you reduce your overall costs – from reducing your price on commodity items to providing additional value-added products and services. Give your current partners the opportunity to help you. Beware of low-cost offers from new suppliers that may not deliver the best value or service quality – while you’ll save money in the short-term, you’ll put the overall performance of your program at risk.
Learn more about how Nth Degree can help you select and right-size your exhibits and reduce your exhibit services costs by clicking here.