A virtual trade show stand – what links the trade show experience to the online world?

Nils Jäger | 2. December 2020

We remain innovative.  Lots has happened at igus since the Corona outbreak.

In addition to all the changes required personally from each individual during this time, many internal measures have been implemented to avoid employee infection and keep the business running. Our customers need our products, and we feel it our duty to continue to be there for them.

We’ve had to do without lots of things this year. Among them are many private get-togethers, but also a number of trade shows in Germany and abroad. These trade shows are always a good opportunity for customers to find out about our products and innovations. Here, too, we have had to come up with new ideas in a relatively short time.

A virtual trade show stand – what is it?

A virtual trade show stand is essentially no different from one at a normal trade show. It’s just virtual. We developed a virtual trade show stand so that we could continue to inform and advise our customers.

Because we did not want to go without customer conversations at the trade show, we set up a real trade show stand. Customers can tune in via video while we are at the trade show stand. This gives them the opportunity to explore the trade show on their own or make an appointment for a guided tour. You can find out more about these capabilities here.

When it became clear that HMI would be cancelled, we decided to set up this new trade show stand in Cologne. Because of the change in venue, we changed the name to KMI. The K stands for Köln, the German name for Cologne.

How is a virtual trade show stand created?

It was a long process, but it was also a wonderful joint project involving many different igus business segments. While the Trade Show Stand department worked on the basic framework and standard technology, each business unit contributed ideas about planning and implementation.

In the chainflex department, that meant that we defined cables and their descriptions. Working closely with Marketing, we prepared samples and displays. At the same time, pages showcasing our new products were created for our website. All these details were harmonised and are available to customers 24/7.

The proverb “too many cooks spoil the broth” does not actually apply here. This joint project thrived on receiving contributions from all participants. We are especially proud of the result. It shows not only our flexibility in adapting to new conditions, but also how many departments with different ideas ultimately achieved a perfect result.

This trade show stand doesn’t completely take the place of an in-person conversation, but it is a very good alternative for the situation we find ourselves in.

What does the trade show stand look like?

After all this information, it will be interesting to see what the final trade show stand looks like. Those who have visited our stand know that we have remained true to ourselves in its design. The basic building blocks are the same.

But this stand is still unique. While other companies have built purely online versions, we constructed ours physically. Our employees are present at the exhibition stand during an appointment This combines the online medium with the physical (catalogues and samples, for example).

In April, more than 120 motion plastics news items were exhibited at the trade show stand. These are all innovations that show how Tech up, Cost down works. On about 400m³ of floor space. A great advantage is that anyone in the world can visit our trade show without much cost or effort.

Development

It takes time to create a trade show stand like ours. This is true of a normal stand, and it is equally true of our virtual stand. Except that the virtual aspect is completely new, so it required a greater investment of time than previous stands did.

Continuous refinement allowed us to construct a trade show stand that was almost perfectly set up by the dates of HMI (or, for us, KMI).

We are currently presenting our autumn news items at the trade show and are thus represented at SPS in a sense. We’re just doing it in Cologne. There, we are introducing our highlights: CF77.UL.D, CF280.UL.H, CFSPECIAL.5xx, CF9.UL, and CF10.UL.

Have you visited our trade show stand? Is there anything you were looking for and didn’t see? Do you have ideas or suggestions for how to improve it? Or would you like to visit our trade show and familiarise yourself with our autumn news items? Contact us. We are here for you.

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