While we are all aware of London’s vast exhibition halls at Olympia, Earls Court and the eXcel, when you are looking for high quality but more compact exhibition space, where can you go? There are a number of brilliant locations dotted around central and Greater London, from football stadiums to business centers and hotels, but what makes these venues attractive to those who pay for exhibition space, the exhibitors?
We caught up with Ranjith Kumar, Events Manager at the CEME Conference Centre in East London to chat about all things exhibition venues. “When you are looking at a vast empty room it can be hard to envisage a bustling exhibition space filled with the chatter and enthusiasm of exhibitors and delegates. When thinking about what makes a venue great, you need to look at things from both the exhibitor and delegates point of view to get a real understand of what they both desire.”
This blog takes a look at what exhibitors need from an exhibition venue. To find out about what delegates want visit ‘What do delegates want from an exhibition venue.’
The right audience
Exhibitors generally book exhibition space because they want to sell products or services. They may also want to raise awareness of upcoming products or initiatives. The main thing they want is a well-targeted, receptive audience, which in essence has more to do with who the exhibition is marketed at, than the venue choice.
However, when it comes to the physicality of the venue there are a few key points exhibitors will want to see…
Good transport links with parking
Most exhibitors will turn up with a van (if not a lorry) worth of exhibition materials. They want the venue to be easily accessed by motorways, dual carriageways and major A roads. Twisty turny country lanes and addresses where the sat nav takes you on a journey into the back of beyond are definitely not desirable. The venue also needs plenty of on-site parking – even better if it’s at a low cost. That city center location with a lack of parking spaces is going to cause big issues when it comes to loading and unloading exhibition gear.
Accessibility and on-site security
Venues need to be accessible 24/7. Long journeys and traffic jams can cause havoc with schedules. You don’t want to turn up at the venue to find out you don’t have access as everyone went home 10 minutes before.
You also want to be able to unload and load your van close to the exhibition hall. Those exhibition goodies and displays can be heavy, the closer you can park to your shell, the better.
On-site security is also a must to ensure anything you leave (at your own risk of course) is likely to stay where you left it.
Refreshments and facilities
Exhibitions can make for long and tiring days. You are on your feet from the crack of dawn, with a smile on your face and a spring in your step until the last delegate goes home. With all the talking to perspective clients, you need a venue with easy access to quality food and refreshments, it’s a bonus if this also doesn’t come at a sky high price.
Ranjith said, “If you are looking to book an exhibition venue with an all inclusive drinks and food package, we find that a cold buffet or street food can go down a treat at lunchtime. Giving exhibitors and delegates access to water, juice and hot drinks machines (at different locations around the venue) gives people a incentive to move around and explore the stands. It also offers opportunities for networking and meeting interesting people.”
On the facility side, modern clean toilets, accessible rooms for those with mobility issues and excellent audio-visual (AV) equipment along with free WiFi, make for an excellent venue choice.
It’s no surprise that those who have the chance to address delegates on wider industry issues get extra coverage at exhibitions. Adding a great seminar programme to your exhibition is a draw for both exhibitors and delegates.
Choose a venue with quality, purpose built presentation and seminar space, to really engage a packed audience. Your venue should also have the latest in Audio-Visual technology and have on-site AV technicians to help ensure all presentations go as planned.
Remember that car parks and outside space can increase your potential exhibition floor. Many companies now have road show vehicles, so choosing a venue with outside space can allow you to expand your exhibition floor considerably. It also allows you to sell different types of exhibition space too.
To find out what Ranjith and the CEME Conference Centre events team can do for your next exhibition, get in touch on +44 (0) 20 8596 5151 email firstname.lastname@example.org or contact us online.< Back