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by Casey Neeley
September 25th, 2013

Hosting an Event Can Be Hard

It takes a skillful staff to show up to an unfamiliar city in which you have to depend on local workers, ensure attendees are happy with the event, collaborate with others and plan to solve a variety of potential snags. Fortunately for Window Film magazine we have a great event team that works wonders when managing our shows and was able to make this year’s International Window Film Conference and Tint-Off™ was our most successful to date.

Not only were we fortunate enough to have wonderful supporters and exhibitors this year, we also had amazing celebrity appearances, from NASCAR driver Greg Biffle, sponsored by 3M, to our inspiring keynote speakers, baseball player Jim Abbott and FDNY chief Richard Picciotto.

Also, I can’t tell you how nice it was to see so many new exhibitors this year. We had a lot of first-time faces on the show floor who really stepped up the game, in my opinion, for booth design. I think in coming years, you’ll see exhibitor booths become larger and more extravagant, both with set-up and demos, as a result of this year’s event.

I hate to brag (not), but honestly, if you weren’t there, you missed out.

If you weren’t there this year, here’s a list of my favorites, or what I like to call my trade show AfBEs (Awards for Best Exhibits):

Best floor space:

Johnson Window Films: If you’ve ever spent days at a trade show, you know that walking around becomes a pain about halfway through day number one. Carpeting in booths becomes a little bit of an issue. Johnson had my favorite booth carpet this year. When standing there I felt like Goldilocks in Baby Bear’s bed; it was just right, not too soft and not too hard. My feet thank you for the break Johnson!

Best booth design: (tie)

Commonwealth Laminating and Coating/Suntek: These first-time exhibitors really took booth design to a new level, featuring multiple television screens, beautiful backlit displays and a Bentley used for PPF demos throughout the show. The big, bright booth setup was one of my favorite and incorporated the company’s branding well, without making it over-the-top.

PremiumShield/Matrix Films: With a center island booth, these guys hit the nail on the head. Not only was the booth open on all four sides, it featured a car in the middle for PPF demos. In lieu of walls and backdrops, the company used a crisscross banner that arched across the top of the booth to the four corners. It was unique and compelling enough to pull in attendees.

Most interactive booth:

Eastman Chemical Co./LLumar: LLumar succeeded in bringing attendees to its booth this year with a window film challenge. The heat shrink challenge pulled in hands-on-loving tinters who were excited to have the chance to try the film out in person at the show.

Most accessible staff:

Madico Window Films: It can sometimes be difficult to reach a company during an event such as this, when traffic is high and booth staff is being pulled in many directions. I didn’t have that problem with Madico. At their booth, I was able to speak to each member of the staff while they expertly navigated between current clients and potential customers as they worked to fulfill my media needs.

If you loved this year’s show just as much as I did, then stay tuned. We’re going to announce our location and new prize information for the 2014 event soon.

P.S. Event staff—You were amazing. Thank you for pulling off such a wonderful event. You make it look effortless and there wouldn’t be a show without your hard work and dedication.

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