Live Presentations

Making Messages Memorable at a Big (And We Mean Big!) Tradeshow

An MPG professional presenter details the benefits of Trimble's Connected Farm software for a packed audience at Farm Progress 2015.

When Trimble Agriculture exhibits at a trade show, it’s big! Big booth. Big audiences. A big variety of solutions to share. And the shows themselves are enormous. Farm Progress, billed as the nation’s largest producer-attended outdoor agriculture event, encompasses more than 2,570,000 square feet with an average attendance of about 160,000.

With so much competition for the attention of farmers and advisors, how does Trimble stand out? With a new live presentation introducing all that Trimble has to offer.

Trimble had already experienced success with MPG brand ambassadors, who welcomed visitors and helped detail Trimble solutions at earlier tradeshows. For Farm Progress 2015, Trimble asked us to create a presentation that would open the booth experience. The goal: let visitors know about the breadth of Trimble’s offerings, focusing on the agriculture management software that brings it all together—Connected Farm.

Trimble is best known as an industry leader in guidance and steering, helping farm equipment operate efficiently and thoroughly in the field. Connected Farm brings the data collected by that equipment into one place, allowing growers and their advisors to make better decisions.

MPG’s theme, “Expect More with Trimble,” allowed us to challenge the audience’s prior knowledge of Trimble, then demonstrate how Connected Farm technology can help them get more out of their investments.

Our professionals gave back-to-back presentations throughout the three-day show. Our brand ambassadors, meanwhile, continued to welcome newcomers, direct traffic, answer questions, and put a friendly face on the Trimble experience.

“The MPG team was a pleasure to work with,” said Trimble Event Coordinator Ashley Limoges. “They pulled our marketing materials into one memorable message. Then, they delivered a great experience at the booth. The professionals presenters set the stage for our representatives to have meaningful conversations with our visitors. And the brand ambassadors made sure everyone felt welcome. As a result, we had increased booth traffic which led to new customers and higher post-show sales. We felt like we were in great hands.”

To see MPG in action at Farm Progress, including selections from our live presentation, check out our video. To learn more about our trade show and corporate event services, visit here.

A+ Tips for Effective Trade Show Exhibits

We love getting great report cards as much as anyone this time of year. And we believe in celebrating success, which is why we’re trumpeting our latest A+ scores like a proud mom on Facebook.

But we also believe in sharing our secrets. Because the effective trade show strategies that earned our client, Crest + Oral-B, such great results at the Chicago Dental Society’s Midwinter Meeting are tactics all exhibitors can learn from.

Here’s what the Exhibiting Effectiveness Evaluation, conducted by Competitive Edge and Trade Shows Plus, had to say about the Crest + Oral-B  experience in Chicago, PLUS tips on how you can get similarly great results.

Our booth for Crest + Oral-B included a hands-on science demo area, brushing stations for sampling, and a live presentation theater, where two professional presenters delivered a news-themed message about Crest and Oral-B's latest innovations.

Our booth included a hands-on science demo area, brushing stations for sampling, and a live presentation theater, where two professional presenters delivered a news-themed deep dive into Crest and Oral-B’s latest innovations.

The overall experience scored 100% compared to all other exhibitors at the show.

OverallUseThisExhibit Presentation

This category evaluated the general impression the exhibit made on the show floor, and our scores were nearly perfect. Here’s a sampling of comments: “Theme was effective/creative. Good overall exhibit design. Good graphics. Good lighting. Good use of A/V. Creative/Imaginative approach to exhibit/messaging. Wow. Amazing.”

ExhibitPresentation

 

How can you get similar results?

Invest in good booth design. Create something inviting that brings your brand to life with smart use of equity colors and graphics. But keep it versatile. The goal is to get multiple years of use out of your booth with the ability to switch out themes and change up the experience each year.

Be bold, and be seen. We can’t stress enough the importance of a big, eye-catching overhead banner, along with  branded signage high enough to be seen over other exhibits.

Don’t skimp on lighting. Even the best-lit convention hall won’t make your exhibit look its best. Good lighting not only helps your investment shine, it actually enhances the experience for your guests.

Layer in a theme. Since Crest + Oral-B had so many new innovations last season, we carried a news theme throughout the booth. Theming is an extra step that can help you avoid dry, boring presentations and demos.

 

Product Presentation

Here, our scores were 5s across the board. Comments included: “Theater is Disney-off-the-chart. Product innovation demos are excellent. Staging is incredible.”

ProductPresentation

 

 

How can you get similar results?

Do a presentation or demo – or both! Of course we love live presentations — they work! And for many products, a demo should be a no-brainer. Here are some ideas for doing them right.

– Be entertaining. But don’t feel pressured to do Disney. Our audiences have come to expect nothing but the best from Crest + Oral-B, so we’re constantly raising the bar on our theater experiences. The real lesson is to incorporate some element of entertainment, whether it simply be multiple monitors, a storytelling approach, or that fun theme we mentioned above.

Use professional presenters. Giving a great presentation at a corporate meeting is different from engaging and entertaining crowds four times an hour for three days straight. Professional presenters will deliver your message with flair every single time.

 

Exhibit Staff

Our scores were A+ here, too. Just look at those comments!

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How can you get similar results?

Go pro. Hire seasoned hosts with the energy and know-how to represent your company with class. Or at least provide your internal team with training on how to be as engaging and helpful as possible on the trade show floor.

Create a uniform look. Matching shirts, ties, and other clothing items not only make your team look good, they make it easy for guests to figure out whom to approach when they’re ready for a conversation.

The final lesson? With good planning, great staffing, and a touch of entertainment, you can create a more effective trade show exhibit that earns top grades from your target audience. Interested in seeing how MPG can help? Check out our Work and our Services.

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Quiet on the Set! Tips for a Great Corporate Video Shoot

Don Directing

MPG Senior Video Producer Don Regensburger directs talent during a shoot for a leading beauty brand.

Our team is in high gear planning a video shoot at a client’s headquarters. It’s part of a new trade show experience we’re creating for a leading health care brand, and a big part of the job is making sure the shoot goes as smoothly as possible for everyone involved.

Video shoots require a smart use of resources. If you’re considering one for an upcoming marketing project, here are some tips for making it cost-effective while making the most of everyone’s time.

 

Before the Shoot

Schedule talent early. If the video will feature corporate leadership, researchers or thought leaders, build the shoot schedule around their availability. Getting on their calendar should be first on your to-do list.

Location, Location, Location! Your next priority should be nailing down where to shoot. Remember, the more locations, the more time for set-up and tear-down (and increased costs for your crew). Make sure to reserve extra space for crew breaks/lunch, hair and makeup, etc. Your agency will help you determine exactly what is needed.

Research and secure all necessary permits. If you’ll need special permission to use certain locations, make sure you’ve got that buttoned up. Get a crew list and make sure each person has the proper badges or credentials to be on the property.

Prepare your talent. Share scripts and storyboards well in advance to avoid on-set surprises. Be clear about wardrobe and ask them to bring several options, avoiding busy patterns. Consider a quick rehearsal before the shoot to increase comfort levels. Having a teleprompter at the shoot can help minimize takes.

Get it in writing. Ask your agency for a comprehensive shoot schedule that includes all relevant information in one place. Share this with any internal stakeholders so they’ll know what to expect the day of the shoot.

CameraNoDateAt the Shoot

Be available. Someone should always be nearby with the authority to approve shots, script changes and other essential content. This person should also be a liaison to smooth the way if internal issues arise due to the shoot.

Be in control. Have a plan for keeping the shoot area quiet and free of random traffic.

Stay on schedule. Do your best to minimize delays and distractions. Remember, time is money!

Don’t bug the crew. Direct all questions and suggestions to the producer.

After the Shoot

Provide support materials pronto! High-res logos, animations and other artwork to be incorporated should be provided well in advance of the video edit.

Give feedback and approvals ASAP. When you receive edits to review, send back comments and/or approvals as quickly as possible to help keep the production on-schedule and on-budget.

Be comprehensive and clear. To save time and avoid confusion, make sure that feedback reflects all internal stakeholders. Send it in one comprehensive communication, if possible.

Whether you’re creating a sizzle reel or need video support for a major event, MPG offers full-scale video production services. Check out our capabilities and give us a call to chat about how we can help put your message in the spotlight.

Discover the Power of a Great Trade Show Presentation

An interactive trade show presentation created by MPG for P&G skin care brands reached thousands of dermatologists at AAD.

Last month, our team went to the Exhibitor Show in Las Vegas to explore some of the latest trade show and event marketing trends and technologies. We always enjoy walking the show floor at Exhibitor, because it’s a sampler of what various vendors can do for their clients.

But this year, we felt like something was missing. During the times we visited the trade show, few booths appeared to have big numbers of highly engaged visitors. The ones that did have crowds weren’t a surprise to us at all. The vendors that had the most engagement were magicians and those that put on some sort of show.

In other words, those that had some sort of live presentation.

Over cocktails later, an attendee told us she was surprised to find the magicians her favorite experience at the trade show. “They kept my attention, and I remembered their message because they delivered it in a way that made me laugh. They were the only ones that had people really gathered around and getting involved.”

MPG brings a full arsenal of options to the table as we craft experiences that help our clients meet their unique objectives. But it’s no secret we believe in the power of great trade show presentations. It’s in our company name.

A great trade show presentation builds a crowd because it creates an event in your booth. Crowds draw more crowds. And because we run presentations back to back, expertly maneuvering traffic in and out of our presentation space, we’re able to help ensure that your booth operates as much to capacity as possible. Your space becomes the place to be.

Trade show presentations allow you to communicate your key messages to large groups of people before they filter out for more intimate encounters with your sales staff. And with the right creative approach (Magicians not your thing? Don’t worry, we’ll come up with an angle that fits you perfectly), you can help guarantee that people walk away remembering what you had to say.

Want to know more about how a trade show presentation can help you build booth traffic, increase engagement and maximize message retention? Check out these recent posts for tips and ideas.

6 Presentation Ideas for Your Next Trade Show

Must Haves for Successful Trade Show Presentations 

Finding Top Talent for Your Trade Show Presentations and Corporate Events 

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Try These Tips for Powerful Product Demos at Live Events

Product Demonstration for P&G fabric and skin care at AAD - By Moening Presentation Group

Product demonstrations are classic experiential marketing and a sure-fire way to make an impression on audiences at trade shows and other live events.

Demos can simplify complicated concepts. They can spark an “a ha!” by showcasing your brand in a new light. They enhance memorability by engaging all of the senses. And they provide a “reason to believe” by allowing target audiences to try the product and interact with the science behind it.

Are you considering a live demo? Here are some key questions to ask.

Is it simple? Live events—trade shows, especially—are unique settings. Space is limited, and so is the amount of time people are willing to spend. Look for activities that…

  1. Can be done within a couple of minutes. If that isn’t possible, consider creating a time-lapse video.
  2. Require a minimum of materials. You should be able to set up on a table-top, then re-set quickly, so demos can be run back-to-back.
  3. Are safe for the general public. If the demo requires safety goggles or poses any sort of physical risk, it’s probably not right for something like a trade show.

 

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Will it play to the crowd? While “kitchen science” is a great approach, and simple is always best, make sure your demo delivers a message that matches your audience in sophistication. Demos should also…

  1. Have an easy-to-notice result. You’re going for a “Wow!” so make sure the outcome is obvious and impressive.
  2. Be big enough to be seen by a semi-large group of people. We often place a small camera on the table so the demo can be broadcast on our video monitor for folks in the back.

 

DemoBlog

Will it work every time? This is the biggest and most important question. Most of our demos run 3 to 4 times an hour over several trade show days, and nothing hurts credibility more than a demonstration that doesn’t deliver the results it’s promised. To ensure that your demo works every single time, you will want to…

  1. Test, test, test. It’s not enough for a demo to work a couple of times in your lab. Run it at least 10 times in succession in a conference room.
  2. Consider a video. If you can’t replicate the same impressive results every time, videotape a successful demo and show that instead.

 

To see more of MPG’s demo work, check out the new experience we created for P&G skin care brands. Our case study will be up soon!

 

Capture Gold at Your Next Event by Tapping into the Power of Emotion

The Winter Olympics are underway in Sochi, and, like the rest of the world, we are watching in amazement! Not only are we Wow’d by the athletes’ skill and amazing stunts, we also are moved by their inspiring personal stories.

Events like the Olympics wouldn’t be what they are without a healthy dose of emotion. Sponsor brands like Procter & Gamble know this, and they’ve tugged our heartstrings many times with their sniffle-inducing “Thank You, Mom” ads.

It’s a perfect example of the power of emotional connections, and it’s something we look for in every project. Emotional ties are abundant in sports. But you can create an emotional connection even if your company or product involves something a little (or a lot) less moving. We’ve done it for clients ranging from oral health product makers to software developers and builders of construction equipment. Here are a few tips.

Tap into the why. What does your audience enjoy about their profession? Why did they become a dentist or an accountant or a dermatologist? Are they making a difference in peoples’ lives, even if it might not be readily obvious? What are they passionate about? What makes them feel they’ve done a great job?

Make them heroes. How can your product or service help your audience succeed in their mission—and not just succeed, but really make an impact? Can you follow the ripples to show how their contribution becomes part of a bigger, more impressive and moving result? How can you help them solve the problems of their patients, their clients or their companies? In what ways can they touch and improve peoples’ lives?

Tell a tale. Instead of relating a bunch of dry facts, wrap your message in a story. Case studies featuring real people are great. Or, create a composite story to illustrate an ideal outcome. Pretend you’re writing a children’s book. Can you use metaphors or fun examples to bring the experience to life?

Engage all of their feels. Remember, there are a ton of other emotions besides those that make us reach for our hankies. People love to laugh. They’re moved to action by fear or the desire to best a competitor. They enjoy being surprised and delighted. Use humor. Inject an element of competition. Show what could happen without your solution, and don’t be afraid to get dramatic.

How do you know you’re effectively engaging your audience’s emotions? If you’re at a live event, it will show on their faces. Are expressions blank? Then you’re not reaching them. Look for empathy, laughter, looks of determination and nods of understanding. And always keep your eye on the prize: if people walk away remembering how you made them feel, chances are good they also will remember you.

What We’ve Learned from 10+1 Years of Growth and Success

Unisys

Ten years ago, our presentations often included song and dance numbers, like this one.

November 2013 marks a special milestone for MPG. We’re celebrating 10+1 years of being in business!

“But wait a minute,” you’re saying. “Eleven years isn’t a big anniversary. What happened to celebrating #10?”

The truth is, we were so busy that we let our tenth slip by without fanfare. Now, as we head toward Lucky 11, we thought it would be fun to take a look at how much MPG and the experiential marketing industry have changed.

It’s not the same old song and dance. Years ago, we routinely created flashy numbers and other theatrical tricks to sell everything from fire equipment to home security systems. These days, clients still expect an unforgettable experience to communicate their messages, but substance is every bit as important as style. Today, our presentations are more science-based, often with demos that bring tough concepts to life. We’re ready and able to bring out the singers and dancers, but we’re also equipped to talk hard science with the most discerning audience member.

AAD presentation

These days, our presentations are much more science-based, incorporating a broader spectrum of technology and presentation techniques within lighter, more environmentally friendly properties.

Properties are lighter and more sustainable. Companies want to reduce costs. They also want to be kinder to the environment. So they’re requesting booths made of materials that are easier and less expensive to ship and assemble—properties that can be put to multiple uses, that, if possible, are created from recycled goods, and that require less fuel to move from one place to the other.

Technology has boomed. This is no surprise to anyone who hasn’t been living under a rock. The tools at our disposal to wow audiences and help our clients build relationships are simply amazing—and they seem to be evolving by the minute. Through it all, we’ve challenged ourselves and our clients to remember that “whiz bang” for “whiz bang’s” sake isn’t a winning strategy. Technology only makes an impact if it connects and communicates in a meaningful way. And technology is still no substitute for the face-to-face interactions that happen at live events.

Travel is tougher. We definitely are not immune to the challenges posed by fewer flights and higher prices. We’ve gotten very good at teleconferencing and reducing costs in other ways. But when our team needs to get to a show, we have to get creative so that travel costs don’t eat up the budget.

Giveaways are no longer throwaways. Trade show attendees used to be happy with a tee-shirt or a pin. These days they want something they can use, something that helps them connect with a company or brand in a meaningful way. Samples are more sought-after than ever—the bigger the better. Attendees also appreciate clever gifts that help keep our clients top-of-mind.

Timelines are tighter. Yesterday’s deadlines now feel leisurely thanks to technological advances, shrinking budgets, and a culture that demands quick thinking, fast response, and ultra-efficiency. Our clients are under pressure to deliver more, faster, which means we’ve grown accustomed to doing great work in record time.

Despite the challenges of a growing industry, some things remain the same for our team at MPG. We’re just as passionate about our work as we were when we started this company. We still have a great time together. And we’re still 100% committed to bringing our clients creative solutions that make their messages unforgettable while forging lasting connections. We’ve been honored to work with amazing companies and partners. Thank you for helping make the last 10+1 years so great.

Follow These ABCs for Awesome Expert Videos at Events

Expert Videos, Interactive Presentations, Trade Show Presentations

MPG Presenter Chris Hurt interacts with a P&G researcher during a live trade show presentation.

A great way to connect with your audience is to let them connect with your experts. At MPG, we often look for ways to feature our clients’ researchers, scientists and specialists on video at trade shows and other events.

Expert videos bring credibility to a brand. They help tell your unique story, and they allow your audience a glimpse behind-the-scenes. They also save travel costs.

But featuring your best and brightest isn’t always easy. Unless they have a side career in show business, scientists and other experts do their best work in the lab or with intimate teams. They might not be accustomed to the spotlight. Even if they’re a superstar in big presentations, they might not be a natural in front of a camera.

That’s why it’s important to identify and nurture your best talent. If you’re thinking of featuring an internal expert at your next event, follow these ABCs.

Assess who’s really interested. If your star scientist has severe stage fright, move on to someone else. The camera—and your audience—will be able to tell if they’d rather be having a root canal. Look instead for people who are naturally outgoing and genuinely want to help. A great way to see who might do well on-camera is to have them read a short script and capture the footage with your phone.

Be sure what they’ll say. It may seem like a good idea to just ask a few questions, then let the person talk while the camera rolls, but people rarely speak in complete, video-friendly bytes. Plus they often get bogged down in details when talking about their areas of expertise. Have your agency or staff writer craft a script, then run it past your on-camera expert for approval.

Coach Them. Speaking naturally on-camera isn’t easy! A good agency and director can work with your expert to help them appear more at-ease and deliver their lines more naturally. Prepare your expert for the idea of having their hair, makeup and wardrobe done, and let them know they’ll be doing several takes. Emphasize that it’s all to help them look their best.

Don’t Stop Looking for Potential Talent. As new people come on-board, try to get a feel for how they might do on camera. You’ll never regret building a pool of go-to experts. And keep an open mind—some of the best talent we’ve worked with are people we initially weren’t sure could do the job. Some folks truly blossom under the spotlight.

For an example of how we made one of Crest and Oral-B’s star scientists look his best, check out our post on the Crest Pro-Health [HD] launch.

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Event Scripts: Less is More!

Image courtesy of jomphong/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of jomphong/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Can you guess one of our biggest challenges as an experiential marketing firm? Is it budgeting? Logistics? Making sure hundreds of people have a wonderful, memorable time?

You might be surprised that one of our most challenging tasks is editing! As in, making sure scripts for events and experiences are short—but meaty—enough to hold people’s attention and get them excited about our clients’ messages.

Right now we’re crafting scripts for several projects, and with each one we’re reminded how important it is to keep things short and sweet. Optimal running time for main presentations at trade shows is 7-8 minutes. Demos should run no longer than about 5 minutes. For a breakfast event with several speakers and entertainers, we made some tough cuts to bring the time in under 50 minutes.

It’s a real art getting science, claims and product benefits into an experience that’s compelling and compact. We want audiences to walk away wanting more, so they’ll be more likely to engage with our clients face-to-face. That’s where real relationships are built.

And that’s why it’s important to have a skilled writer on your team. Even then, never be satisfied with a first draft. Read scripts aloud, preferably with the talent who’ll be delivering them. Listen for spots where your attention starts to wane. Look for ways to get the same thought across with fewer, snappier words. It’s better to make 2 points memorably than to make 10 and leave the audience numb.

And since this post is about brevity, we’ll cut it off here. Do you have any stories about a particularly challenging event script edit? Tell us about it!

6 Presentation Ideas for Your Next Trade Show

If you’ve never considered trade show presentations, consider this: An interactive presentation is a tried and true strategy for engaging audiences. Not only can it attract a crowd, it can improve traffic flow, ensure prospects remember your message and deliver more qualified, knowledgeable leads to your sales team.

Think a live presentation is just a one-sided spiel? Think again! We’ve got 6 winning approaches to serve any message or budget.  Check out these presentation ideas:

Vignettes Want to bring case studies to life? Looking for ways to show potential customers you understand their clients? For an emotional, personal touch, use live actors to create a series of vignettes. Show your product or technology at work in a simulated clinic or office setting. Show consumers interacting with your products or services in their home environments. Present your vignettes as a series of walk-throughs, or put them on a turntable show for an even bigger “wow!” Here’s a great example.

Professional Product Demo Sure, you could have your sales reps show off your latest products and technologies. But how can you guarantee they’ll stay on-message while moving the most people through the experience? Hire a professional presenter. Then, after your audience has absorbed the basics, your reps can step in and close the sale.

Video Interaction Give the presenters something to talk about with images, footage and other back-up displayed on an array of monitors with multi-source feeds that allow them to show different visuals at the same time. Use the main monitor for a “conversation” with an on-screen thought leader that looks as if it’s happening live, in real time. Fast paced and impressive, this approach keeps ‘em captivated while you tell your story. Here’s an example.

News Format Create a buzz by turning your booth into a newsroom, complete with live anchors who conduct in-person interviews and interact with “remote” reporters either live or on video. This type of presentation is great for product launches and other occasions when you really do have news to deliver.

Audience Involvement Give your audience members hand-held remote devices that let them contribute to the show – or have them interact using their cell phones via Twitter or a specialized app. Ask questions and get responses in real time. Ask people to vote and instantly display the poll results. Audience response systems  can be worked into any number of presentation formats, from seminars to game shows.

Expert Q&A Bring your thought leaders to the booth and allow them to interact with your audiences. A professional moderator can filter questions, monitor the time and make sure your personnel look their best. An on-site producer can also manage visual support, freeing your people to focus on delivering critical information in a relaxed setting.

Some of these ideas might seem simple enough to DIY, but hiring professionals to craft, produce and present means you can be assured your presentation runs non-stop and is top-notch 100% of the time.Want to know more? Check out this post on effective presentation strategies.

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