Three Ways to Create an Inviting Trade Show Booth

Posted by on Jul 6, 2018

Exhibiting at a trade show puts companies on the right track but how are meaningful connections that translate into sales made? Surprisingly, the secret to a successful trade show is not a top notch giveaway coupled with a fishbowl. Fishbowls full of business cards overwhelms e-blast lists with unqualified leads. Do not focus on using a gimmicky giveaway to connect with attendees. Create an atmosphere that inspires potential customers to engage with the booth. This is accomplished in the execution of the graphics, layout and hospitality.

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 Use Eye-Catching Imagery at Trade Shows 

Stop attendees in their tracks with an innovative booth design. You can achieve this by combining clever headlines and your best professional imagery. Attendees need to be able to tell what you do, but don’t use your booth displays to deliver your sales pitch. Focus on creating an atmosphere that sparks curiosity. When the timing is right your booth staff will deliver the deal. The appropriate time may not be on the trade show floor.

 Have Conversations Without Barriers  at Trade Shows

Keep products, marketing materials and tables uncluttered and prevent them from blocking entry ways. Encourage staff to invite guests inside the booth for browsing and conversations. The natural flow of traffic will push attendees away if they are forced to stand in the aisle. Additionally, incorporate a place to sit down for meetings. Chairs are sparse at trade shows, and the cordiality will be much appreciated.

 Be Hospitable at Trade Shows

Once a sales lead has been established in your booth, invite the attendee to sit down. Hospitality is key in creating a memorable and positive experience with your company at a trade show.  Supply mints, water or light snacks and have a simple first-aid kit on hand. Conceal these items to prevents guests uninterested in the company from overwhelming the booth. Allow staff to suggest and hand deliver nourishments to their guests so the experience is more personable.
Before planning your next trade show re-think the goals. Will attendees remember the exhibitor that gave away the pink Yeti cooler a week after the show closes? Pick a target audience and make your company memorable to those who need your services. Hook prospective customers with an attractive display and invite them to converse in your booth. Anticipate your guest’s needs and brandish hospitality in the form of refreshments and relief. Remember, trade shows are about building relationships and meeting new prospects. Don’t leave your trade show success in the hands of a plastic cooler.


To learn more about Branding Iron’s trade show coordination services watch our video

Being Prepared for Interviews and How to be Interviewed

Posted by on May 14, 2018

By Scott Emerine


For the past twenty years I have experienced interviews from both sides of the table.  As a journalist, I found unique ways to set people at ease in order to obtain information that made for a compelling story.  As a public relations executive, I have helped CEOs, managers and sales men and women overcome their fears of being interviewed.


Branding Iron Co-founder Scott Emerine overseeing an interview between the Co-owner of Black Sage and Fox.














Despite the many cliché scenarios, most journalist are simply trying to tell a great story.  In the corporate world there are not as many investigative journalists trying to stir up controversy and conspiracies.  Most journalist long to inform readers or viewers about great companies and great people, but companies fail to tell their stories properly.


This can be easy to do by avoiding some pitfalls and following some simple rules.  One of the first mistakes of being interviewed is talking about subject matter that is not on point or pertinent to the story.  Don’t speak about things you have no reference to or that do not pertain to your story.  This can easily dilute your message.  Secondly, make sure what you talk about speaks to the emotions.  Interviews are not sales pitches.  Most stories involve a human-interest aspect.  If the story is about a product or service you still make it relevant by keeping it about the end-user.  Speak to benefits not the functionality.

Another lesson is that you do not have to be Omnipotent.  If you do not have the answer to something, do not feel obligated to give an answer.  Be honest, and be truthful in all your answers.  This is the easiest way to avoid issues.  If you do not have the answer you can get back to the journalists. As Mark Twain once said, “If you always tell the truth, you never have to remember anything.”

Lastly, you should not only know the background of who is interviewing you, but also the outlet that is interviewing you.  Do your own research.  Read or view their last articles and stories. This lets you see their style of writing and even his or her way of questioning. Find out if they have an angle or a specific reason for conducting the interview.  The more research you do, the better your interview will go. You can also set the member of the media at ease when you not only know about them, but about their outlet and what they are trying to accomplish.

At Branding Iron we conduct media training seminars, handle media relations and educate companies on being ready for interviews.  To find out more, email


Get to Know The Owners- Part 1

Get to Know The Owners- Part 1
Posted by on Feb 8, 2018

By Marne Brobeck

There is a line in a Frank Sinatra song that reads, I’ve been a puppet, a pauper, a pirate, a poet, a pawn and a King. I can imagine Ol’ Blue Eyes sitting in a lounge, swirling ice cubes in a short tumbler. His lyrics were certainly revealing and without a doubt, inspired by many stages and events from his colorful life.


Five Steps to Overcoming a Creative Block

Five Steps to Overcoming a Creative Block
Posted by on Jan 17, 2018

Have you ever enthusiastically sat down to start working on a project and suddenly felt frozen? Was your mind completely blank? When an artist can’t access their inspiration or bring themselves to create new work it’s known as a creative block. Creative blocks can be a terrifying obstacle when deadlines are involved. Luckily, progress is only hindered temporarily. Below are five steps to overcome creative block and regain access to your arsenal of ingenuity.


Where Creative Ideas Come From

Posted by on Dec 3, 2015

by Marne Brobeck

Since 1968, Keebler® has made the claim that their cookies are baked by elves in a hollow tree. It would be safe to say that probably wasn’t on the creative brief. Yet, one creative at Leo Burnett looked beyond the many rows of gray lines on that white sheet of paper and saw something magical. Like the proverbial fly on the wall, I would love to have seen the client’s face when the agency presented the storyboards showing those little apron-wearing munchkins busy at work–inside a tree nonetheless. The long blank stare, the sound of finger rolls on the conference room table top while the creative team managed to maintain a pasted-on smile. Maybe the client applauded. Or asked the question, “What are you guys smoking?” (I’ve had clients do both.) So, where do these ideas come from?

Creative Process



How to Organize Event Planning Details

Posted by on Aug 20, 2015

Keeping a special event organized is paramount in running a smooth event. Planning trade shows and corporate events often involve a lot of elements including invitations, deadlines, quotes, budgets and approvals.  It’s a very detailed process and if something is missed it can create a mini panic. Here are event planning tips on how to keep your event organized so the day of the event you can focus on execution.

event planner


How to Prepare for an Interview with the Media

Posted by on May 6, 2015

by Scott Emerine

Hawaiian Shirt

There are two types of people; those that like being interviewed and having media exposure and those that do not. Being interviewed can be positive depending on how it is handled. In this blog I will focus on how to prepare for an interview with the media and include tips for executives. 


Trade Show Checklist

Posted by on Apr 16, 2015

By Sheila Reed

Have you ever had to make an emergency run at a trade show for last minute items you forgot to pack? Or have you scrambled to find a reservation or order confirmation when something went awry? Here’s a handy trade show checklist for what to pack for your next trade show to prevent mini panic attacks.

trade show checklist


Considerations for Trade Show Booth Design

Posted by on Mar 9, 2015

By Marne Brobeck

trade show

Walk the floor of any trade show and you will see any number of concepts meant to draw attention. Roulette wheels, magicians, trinkets of all things imaginable–it seems that anything goes and often does when clients are asked to display their products and services. The one constant is that trade shows are hard work. Whether you volunteered or just the lucky one chosen to be the company mouthpiece, you will find the days long and tiring. Arrive fresh and prepared to show your best side.


How to Attract Customers and Media Attention at Trade Shows

Posted by on Jan 30, 2015

How to Attract Customers and Media Attention at Trade Shows

By Scott Emerine

Have you ever exhibited at a trade show and you feel like a small company in a sea of large companies?  Have you ever felt like your press release is one of a million?  You are not alone.  That isolated feeling is one that many companies experience when trying to tout their brand message at international trade shows.  Strategic public relations can help alleviate that feeling.  Over the past decade Branding Iron has found three strategies that enable clients’ messages to be heard at trade shows.

trade show press release public relations

Scott Emerine conducting a press conference  at ALEA 2014

The New Product Introduction

Editors and writers are hungry for new content.  New product releases may sound cliché, but it is how you present the message that matters most.  Introducing a new widget is not a big deal.  Introducing a new widget that no one else has or that does something that no one else’s widget can do is important.  Deadlines are always tight, so give the media advance notice that you will have a release about a product.  Let them know what it is and why it is important.  Prepare high-resolution images and video if possible in advance of the release.  Your goal is to make the member of the media’s job as easy as possible. Be sure you know their deadlines and help them not feel the crunch of tight schedules.  Sending embargoed release months in advance of a show can help obtain coverage before the deluge of releases that are issued during a show.  Sending the press release in advance of the show can also prove useful if you let readers know that the NEW product will be at the show for attendees to see.