Trade Show Backdrops
What are the main types of tradeshow backdrops?
What is a backdrop for trade show?
Trade show backdrops are what you use to hold your trade show graphics. Some trade show backdrops can hold the graphics on just the front side − these are single-sided. Some can show the graphic designs on both sides, however, and are considered double-sided.
What Features Make Trade Show Backdrops Stand Out?
If you want to make a trade show backdrop stand out, then you will want to make sure it is made from a durable polyester or some other kind of stretch fabric. This will help ensure that the backdrop stays in good condition despite how many times it is put up, taken down, and transported.
A worn-out backdrop and one with lesser quality materials can't survive the traffic and travel time that is needed for trade show events. You also want to make sure that the material is wrinkle-resistant, so it is good to go right away during setup.
The backdrop display should also be large to improve visibility for your booth. This can help maximize your promotional capabilities while working the trade show. A screen as large as 10' x 10' can create a large and very visible display that will improve the effectiveness of your trade show booth.
The framework used to hold up your backdrop also needs to be strong. Something made with lightweight aluminum is not only durable, but also lightweight and easy to assemble, take down, and transport. You won't have to lug around any bulky equipment to ensure that your trade show backdrop is displayed properly and prominently.
Trade Show Booth Backdrop Options
In addition to the many trade show backdrop options that are available, there are other options you can choose to incorporate as well. A backdrop with lighting will stand out. LED ladder lights can help illuminate the graphics you are using.
A double-sided backdrop is also a good way to increase visibility on all sides when you are competing in a busy environment. Being able to see the backdrop from more than one side helps to bring more foot traffic to the trade show booth, which can help you make a much bigger impact.
You can also choose from different shapes. Rectangular backdrops are the standard; however, you can also choose a more unique backdrop. For example, one with a curved design that can wrap around your exhibit.
What Are the Main Types of Tradeshow Backdrops?
There are 1000's of different styles and looks for trade show displays, but they can be sorted into some basic groups. When you're shopping for tradeshow backdrops, it may make it easier if you look at the hardware first, to help you find the type of backdrop that best meets your own specific requirements.
Almost all backdrops include a hardware frame that holds your trade show graphics. Some trade show backdrops hold graphics on just the front (single-sided), some show your art on both front and back (double-sided). Designers try to make every display look unique and different, but the backdrop frames themselves are built in several standardized ways:
Pop Up Displays
Pop up displays use an accordion frame that expands and contracts. These days pop up displays usually come with printed fabric for the graphic. That graphic can be a single large piece or multiple smaller pieces ("Patchwork style").
The graphics can attach to the hardware in several different ways, including hooks, Velcro, silicone beading, magnetic strips, etc. Any of the pop up backdrops set up faster than almost any other type of exhibit, getting you ready for the event very quickly.
Popups come in 3ft, 5ft, 8ft, and 10ft sizes, in both flat and curved shapes, and can be linked together to create larger configurations. To summarize, the options for popup displays are:
Velcro Attached Fabric Popup (Available with or without Backlighting)
Silicone Edge Attached Fabric Popup (Available with or without Backlighting)
"Patchwork" style (multiple fabric graphics) Popup
"Classic style" Heavy Duty Popup Frame and Rolled Carpet or Rolled Laminated Graphics
Rigid Frames (or Hybrid Displays)
Rigid frames or hybrid displays are another way to build event backdrops for trade shows. These typically use extruded aluminum frames and assemble in different ways, some needing tools, some using clever clips, hooks, knobs, etc., so that you don't need to find a missing tool. Graphics normally are made with rolled laminated photo prints or printed fabric structures, similar to the popup displays.
MultiQuad displays are a subset of a rigid frame design that uses rigid printed plastic panels for graphics. The main difference is these frames use finished aluminum, not extrusions, and are very modular, allowing you to combine frames very easily, not only to accommodate different sizes of booths but also to build up and create towers and arches from the same hardware used in the backdrop.
Zipup Graphics on Rigid Tube Frames
Zipup graphics on Rigid tube frames are another hardware option. These use aluminum tube sections to build the frame; the tubes slip together and lock in place with clips. The tube pieces often have bungee cords running through them to keep similar pieces (each side, the top, and the bottom) grouped together in the shipping case, making it easier to identify the pieces and assemble the frame.
Cloth backdrops are used, typically a "pillowcase" style, that slips over the tube form and then pulls tight and zips shut to maintain tension. Tube frames also come in multiple widths, including 3ft, 5ft, 8ft, and 10ft, and also are available in flat and curved shapes.
There are also lots of unique tube shapes, allowing you to create not only larger displays but many different configurations. Tube displays set up very quickly, without tools.
Truss Trade Show Display Systems
A Truss trade show display system is made with steel or aluminum, sometimes composites. Graphics can be rigid or fabric, attached in all of the ways mentioned above.
Truss event backdrops have a unique shape and are almost always heavier than the other choices, but come with some benefits too. They are usually more structurally strong, so they easily hold shelves, large monitors, and heavier products. They look strong too, which can be a potent marketing tool.
Banner Stand Wall
Creating a banner stand wall is one way to have a trade show backdrop that doesn’t have a hardware frame. This banner backdrop can be made with several banner stands placed side by side.
Some of these link magnetically to minimize the gap between banners; some use mechanical clips. This approach helps to minimize the cost of the backdrop, and also makes the exhibitor setup and take-down process very simple and quick.
Another benefit of this approach is that the individual banner stands can also be used separately, in smaller events, or even as accessories with a larger backdrop for bigger events.
Backdrop Without a Frame
One last way to build a backdrop without a frame is to “borrow the frame” - that is, to use the "pipe and drape" curtains that most trade shows already have surrounding the booths, used to define and separate the different exhibit spaces.
An exhibitor can create a simple backdrop wall with a printed banner designed to attach to the show's pipe frame and cover the show's black or blue curtain drape with a full-color graphic printed on a fabric banner.
This inexpensive backdrop wall can be a great entry method for new exhibitors, allowing them to try out show marketing without a much larger investment. (Another good entry method is to rent a display for your first couple of shows, while you work to define and create your trade show marketing strategy.).
Benefits of Using Tension Fabric as a Trade Show Backdrop:
- Very portable
- Ease of assembly.
- Easy Graphic Design
- Allows for creative display solutions.
- Offers versatile custom trade show displays
- Limitless design possibilities.
- Reduced Production Time
- Variety of shapes, sizes and colors.
- High visibility.
- Ability to display photographs, 3D visual effects, graphics, and branding.
- Extreme durability.
- Eco-friendly and recyclable.
- Simple to clean (machine washable!).
These benefits are the reasons why more and more trade show exhibitors use fabric for their trade show backdrop. Custom tension fabric graphics can also be seen at a tradeshow as eye catching hanging signs in towers, cloth backdrops, wings on the sides of displays, and fabric walls to configure meeting and conference areas.
- They are quite practical. They provide easy transporting and storage.
- Normally, no tools are needed to assemble or dismantle these trade show backdrop displays.
- They create fresh, up-to-date trade show graphics that are eye-catching and easily updated.
- They also give the exhibit a more contemporary look and feel by adding movement, elegance, and dimension, especially when used with functional trade show lighting.
The advantages to fabric graphics are also easy to see from a price perspective: they are inexpensive, fast to produce, incredibly simple (light weight and foldable) to transport, environmentally friendly, and can be printed to look like virtually anything. In fact, you can often use cloth to “fake” other materials, in situations where people won’t be looking too hard. Consider using a cloth ceiling or a faux "brick" wall in your space! Also, fabric displays made from recycled plastic are now available to be used in trade show banners, retractable banner stands and even your fabric backdrop, which is great for creating a high impact, eye catching trade show exhibit and minimizing your carbon footprint at the same time.
Trade Show Displays with Tension Fabric Graphics
We place fabric custom graphics on our exhibits in three primary ways; on extruded aluminum frames, attached with either Velcro or silicon edged beads, or onto aluminum tube frames with a pillow case graphics slipped and zipped tight.
Popular pillow case or tube form displays include our Waveline displays, as well as a variety of other structures, including fabric towers, arches, and rooms. The aluminum tube displays assemble quickly and easily, just slipping together and snapping into place. The pillow case graphics are easy to handle, slip onto the frame and zip them up to finish the assembly.
The aluminum extrusion frames are often called hybrid displays, because they combine light weight fabric graphics with a more traditional rigid extrusion. These displays are a bit more complicated to assemble - but not too much at all. Most of our hybrid exhibits assemble with either a hex key lock, or a hand turned knob, that locks the frame pieces together. Graphics are normally printed fabric and attach with either Velcro or with silicon edges. Just like most good products, our best hybrid trade show displays come with lifetime hardware warranties. Popular hybrid backdrops include the Vector Frame and Timberline trade show display designs.
All styles of stretch fabric graphics are easy to back-light, and we offer backlit versions of most of them - just ask for details. Worth noting; some of the popup displays - the Burst and the Xpressions - also use fabric graphics - and can be backlit - so if you're looking for fabric graphics, with or without backlighting, don't forget to check out some fabric pop up displays too!
Please let us know if you have any questions - American Image Displays want to be your one-stop shop for all trade show requirements.