Keeping the Concept Simple: A Home as a Creative Exhibit Design


Often technology companies want exhibit designs that include demo stations and kiosks to showcase their products. Sometimes they decide they need a theater with a live presenter talking about product features and benefits. Sometimes these are the best roads to take. But sometimes, in the spirit of building a story that uses the offerings in the exhibit, showing the everyday accessibility of technology is a great way to engage trade show attendees.

This was the case with Elgato, a German company exhibiting at CES in 2016. Elgato creates app-powered lifestyle accessories and content creation tools for the connected home. To be more specific, Elgato provides a Bluetooth-enabled solution that does not require a hub, gateway, or bridge like most platforms for smart homes but connects directly to an app. With help from Siri, users can then talk directly to the home’s sensors to change lighting, temperature, humidity, security precautions, and the like.

Storytelling in the Connected Home

Obviously, Elgato had several options for its exhibit, but since the company creates “a connected home,” the solution chosen was to build a display that was a “home.” In this case, three vignettes provided context for Elgato’s connected home: the foyer, the living room, and the kitchen. In addition to allowing optimal interaction with the product offerings, the home was a storytelling device, putting attendees at the heart of the experience—and generating a user-based interest in the smart home, one built on real-time engagement. The concept of storytelling came to life with attendees immersed in an environment that demonstrated how Elgato’s products could make their lives easier and better.

The Connected Home at Home

Using a stylized home as the basis for its exhibit design included a ceiling which not only marked the boundaries of the space but also controlled the lighting. The lighting, in turn, was color-matched to the illuminated elements in the space below including:

  • four table lamps.
  • two standing lights.
  • two air quality sensors.
  • two 60″ HDTVs.
  • two Zen water fountains.
  • two stereos.
  • two home exterior doors. with motion sensors.

To enable attendees to control all of the above, there were eight iPhones, two Apple watches, and four iPads, each with the Elgato Bluetooth app installed

Elgato’s challenge was to show the advantages of the connected home—and what better way to do this than to draw visitors into a connected home? This exhibit also had conference rooms and storage, but the major message for attendees was to make themselves at home.

We have other examples of how the concept of a house can work as a creative exhibit design. Watch for those posts in the near future.

PS: By the way, look at what Elgato did for CES in 2017!

When you talk to your exhibit designer, don’t over-complicate the conversation: think about your visitors and what will help turn them into prospects. Want some more ideas? Download our free guide, 28 Questions to Ask Before You Plan Your Exhibit Program. Click below.

free guide download questions for exhibit planning