How much does it cost to participate in a trade show?

At your last meeting with the sales and marketing department, you decided to participate in a trade show. The whole team is delighted. But the question remains: how much will it cost?

Even if you have attended trade shows before, it is good idea to regularly re-evaluate the costs associated with participating in a trade show, especially those associated with reserving a booth, renting the booth, hiring the appropriate staff and doing the necessary promotion.

The cost of attending a trade show: an overview

Although it is difficult to estimate how much it will cost to attend a specific trade show, the costs are generally divided as follows:

  • 35% for renting a space
  • 30% to build a trade show display
  • 20% for labour
  • 15% for promotion at the trade show

Let’s take a closer look at how to calculate these costs.

1. Trade show booth costs

Cost of building your booth

The cost of a trade show booth, as you can probably imagine, will vary greatly depending on your needs. These factors can help you to estimate the cost more precisely:

With so many factors to consider, it is difficult to give a general estimate of exactly how much a trade show booth will cost. Estimations must be done on a case-by-case basis.

The best thing to do is to get quotes from trade show booth designers and compare prices. Use that information as a basis for determining the total cost of your trade show attendance.

Cost of renting a space for your booth

Another cost to consider is the rental of the booth space. How much does it cost to rent a space? This depends on the show.

For an exact amount, contact the organizer directly or consult the show rules sheet, which generally specifies the terms of participation, layout and space rental prices.

2. Labour costs

If you want your trade show to be successful, you need to pick the right people for your team, especially your sales teams. However, there are significant costs associated with this, including compensation, travel and accommodation. It is important to take these costs into consideration when planning and budgeting for your event.

Obviously, the further away the show is from your office, the higher the costs will be! You should plan for at least $2,500 for transportation and up to $4,500 for accommodation. These personnel expenses typically represent between 15% and 20% of the total costs associated with the show.

3. Promotional costs

Promotion is incredibly important before and during a trade show. The more people talk about you, the better your chances of getting good results. You can use various promotional materials to help with this including printed visuals (flyers, point-of-sale advertising, business cards, posters, etc.) and audiovisual equipment (videos, lighting, screens, etc.).

You will also need furniture (tables, stools, chairs, etc.). These items should factor into your cost calculation. Some exhibition booth manufacturers offer furniture rental, so you may be able to rent some equipment instead of buying it.

4. Overhead costs

Don’t forget your overhead costs, such as your travel costs and the delivery of various materials, as well as the fees for your supporting team the trade show. Will you need the services of a barista, a caterer, a hostess, an animator, a maintenance team, etc.?

Again, contacting the organizer directly or consulting the show rules sheet will help you determine what you can expect to spend.

Let totm exhibition calculate the cost of your participation in a trade show

So how much does it cost to attend a trade show? The answer: it depends on your exhibit space and promotional needs. Additional fees related to the event can also add to the overall cost. You can easily find out more information about costs by getting in touch with the show organizers.

If you need help working out the cost of participating in a trade show, or for information on designing a booth, contact our team now. We will be happy to answer your questions!