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Tips To Trim Your Booth Budget

Most traders and marketers desire to acquire a booth that fits all their needs and specifications. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Financial constraints or the need to cut down on expenses may force you to work with a tight budget during your next trade show. The good news is that even with a tight budget, you can still achieve your live marketing goals as long as you lay the right strategies. Here are a few tips on how to trim your booth budget:

Draw a realistic budget

Drawing a realistic budget can be hard, especially if you don’t know what to include and what to leave out. Previous budgets may come in handy in terms of helping you team pinpoint the excesses, and areas that require budget cuts. You may also reference publications from various trade shows to establish the average cost per sq. and discern how much you need to spend on a booth to attain the desired results.

Rent a smaller booth

Most trade shows charge according to square footage occupied. With this in mind, renting or acquiring a smaller booth will mean that you will pay less in shipping, drayage, rental charges and exhibition costs. The best part is that you can still achieve your objectives even if your booth is small.

Attend fewer shows

Attending all the trade shows throughout the year does not guarantee that you will gain customers. Instead of attending ten trade shows, consider going to 4 or 5 shows that have most of your target customers. This will help to cut down on costs.

Reutilize what you already have

Instead of buying new materials, apparels and items, consider reusing what you already have. You may spruce up your custom trade show booth and pop-up displays to give them a new, fresher look in line with the theme of the exhibition.

Rent or hire locally

If you are exhibiting nationally or internationally, consider renting a booth locally and hiring a local sales rep to save on shipping and travel costs. In addition, buy any materials you might need (e.g. printing papers, pens and notebooks) from local vendors in order to cut down on extra expenditure. However, you must make sure that this does not contravene the regulations of the trade show.

Do not go overboard

Trade shows are normally about giving out brochures, gifts, and samples. However, issuing these items to everyone that stops by your booth can take a huge chunk of your budget. Consider keeping it simple by giving small gifts to visitors who have shown a great interest in your products. 


Learn to share your booth with other exhibitors who are not directly in competition with your business. You may be in the same niche, but offering different products that are not in competition. This will help share on rental charges and exhibition costs. 

Reduce labor costs

Labor costs can take a massive chunk of your budget, especially if you are using a highly advanced booth with tools that require manual intervention. You can reduce labor costs by simplifying your exhibit. Instead of setting up a booth with multiple stalls and monitors, consider putting up an inline exhibit or a pop-up display 

Opt for ground transport

Exhibiting at international and national trade shows attract high transport costs. In essence, you have to plan on all the transport logistics in time, in order to ship your booth from your base to the show, without much hustle. You may also incur storage costs before and after the show. Considering this, you are advised to choose the cheapest transport option. In this case, your ideal choice should be ground transport.

Justify your budget

Sometimes it might be impossible to trim your booth budget. In such a scenario, you only need to do a feasibility study to establish how much you expect to generate if you apply your current budget without any alterations.


While working with a tight budget might help save on expenditure, you should not cut down on costs to the extent that you fail to achieve your company’s objectives. Learn how to balance between savings and expenditure, and spend whatever you have to spend to achieve desirable results.

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