I have read a lot of articles lately about “green” trade show booths. So the uber geek took over today and rather than sitting around watching the Battlestar Galactic marathon I did some research on how I could make the “greenest” 10 x 10 trade show booth using my current suppliers or new ones I was able to find online. I was looking for products that had a low environmental impact and could be recycled or were made from recycled.
The Structure: I picked aluminum for the main core frame. I did look at some of the new vendors that are offering trade show booths in wood, recycled cardboard and even bamboo. I would have to say that I really liked the concept at boothster.com, they defiantly have a right idea. But it was just not the look I needed. I picked aluminum because it can be recycled and there are a number of manufacturers that already build my booth with aluminum. Thus I would still have a large selection of booth types and designs. I picked a very basic back wall design with the necessary components that I needed for the shows that I have coming up.
The Graphics: This got to be a bit trickier because many of the printable products are synthetic and are not noted for their ability to be recycled. In case you did not know, one article I read and that over 1 billion tons of fabrics are discarded every year. I did find that we do have some manufactures of printable cotton fabric which is a natural product and considered to be somewhat “green”. The ink on the other hand tended to be solvent based and not as environmentally friendly as I had hoped. I did find a few companies that do have non-solvent based ink and actually are making an effort to be very environmentally friendly. I feel like this is the area that I ran into more than one road block for my preferred methods of printing.
The Lighting: So I am going to stretch here and go over the top on the “green”. So what I found was a 12w LED lights that I could run off of solar panels on top of my booth. I would use the house lights in the convention center to produce my booth lighting. Not only would I be doing some good for the environment I was also reducing my electrical bill. There are a ton of variables with trying to run my lights this way. With some consolation with a manufacture they actually had an awesome panel that can be rolled up and put in my case.
The flooring: I picked a bamboo modular floor. Its bamboo do I need to say more? But the issue I did have here is I could not find a really great trade show solution floor that I considered to be the ultimate “green” solution.
Shipping Containers: In the spirit of keeping “green” I was able to find a wide variety of large heavy duty card board boxes that would potentially hold my “green” trade show booth. I am not a believer in card board shipping boxes for trade show booths being that I have seen firsthand how the shipping companies and the teamsters actually handle our freight.
Additional items: This would be a “must do” for all “green” trade show booths. I wanted to add in a lead collection system and electronic document system in which I would use and iPad and let attendees pick which brochures that would like to have sent via email to them. I could also have the energy come from my solar panels to keep the iPad’s charged during the show.
My conclusion is that I was able to create a “green” trade show booth with very little effort. Now it did not come with any magic stamp on it and it probably will not win any awards for being the “greenest” trade show booth on the trade show floor. But I can say that I have made an effort to be the best “green” exhibitor I could be today.
Good Luck at your next trade show.