Exhibition Design: a practical application of people monitoring technology

Exhibition Design: a practical application of people monitoring technology

Exhibition Design: a practical application of people monitoring technology

In the competitive, crowded and often ruthless world of exhibitions, impact is what makes the difference. Unfortunately, today everybody seeks to achieve impact mostly with beautifully crafted visuals, Scandinavian-inspired simplicity, richness of colors, interaction and open free flow spaces. Not to mention free gadgets, lots of them. The only and truly underused element that can help further differentiating a stand form another is analyzing in real time the behavior of visitors and adapt the exhibition itself accordingly


In this way, it is possible to find a way of engaging to the visitors that can reinforce and intensify the initial response to the visuals of the booth, which are often short term. This is especially true in the afternoon when fatigue is a stronger driver than curiosity. At Xetal we made an experiment, where we have started with a rather standard stand composed of banners, chairs and a table placed as indicated by the guidelines of the exhibition we were participating to.
We, then, have placed our sensors to record the density of people standing in and about the stand space to understand how they would interact with the stand itself. Our goal was to measure the effectiveness of the standard design enforced by the exhibition organizers and see how little changes could bring us an advantage on attracting visitors.


After the first day, we plotted the measurements and we could identify three classes of visitors.Interested visitors would cluster around the two persons at the stand (zone A and B) with preference for being very close and interact with them. The density of passive listeners (i.e. visitors listening to a discussion without participation) was also low as illustrated by the limited spread in areas A and B. This was a result of a relative strong presence of visitors standing at a distance (zone C) and not approaching.

From a simplistic analysis, we realized that we needed to attract people from zone C to zone A and B, even if only as passive listeners, to have a greater impact. To do that we needed to understand what was the reason for Zone C existence. It turned out that we, like all other stands, had a poster placed on the side wall as well as on the desk with the description of the exhibition itself. It was because of these posters that passing visitors could stand, read and move on instead of engaging.

For the second day of the exhibition, we removed the posters. We could already feel a change ourselves at the beginning of the day. Something the final measurements proved to be real. We were on the right track for a more impactful stand design even with such a small change. Zona A and B were no longer shallow but included a larger percentage of listeners while zone C density was decreased and, we feel, reduced to people barely curious about us.

This is just an example of how the information provided by a Xetal system could be used to determine not only presence and number of people, but also their interaction level without invading their privacy.  Subscribe to the mailing list to know more.

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