Best Trade Show Booths from Expo West 2017 – Kashi, Stonyfield, Gaia Herbs

Best Trade Show Booths from Expo West 2017 - Kashi, Stonyfield, Gaia Herbs

One of the most unheralded but important aspects of Natural Products Expo West are the trade show booths themselves. Some companies put a tremendous amount of thought and effort into their booths, and I like to acknowledge those brands that go above and beyond what is generally expected. As such, after each Natural Products Expo West, […]

Expo West Trade Shows
LivingMaxwell.com

One of the most unheralded but important aspects of Natural Products Expo West are the trade show booths themselves.

Some companies put a tremendous amount of thought and effort into their booths, and I like to acknowledge those brands that go above and beyond what is generally expected.

As such, after each Natural Products Expo West, I give awards to my the best trade show booths. For me, the themes of this year’s winners were originality, artistic creativity, and interactive experiences.

Here are my best trade show booths from Natural Products Expo West 2017.

KASHI

kashi-trade-show-booth-expo-west-transitional-organic

What might very well be the most unusual but arguably the most compelling trade show booth I have ever seen was from Kashi.

Not only was there no traditional booth, but the company wasn’t even passing out samples of its food! Literally, it had absolutely no samples to give out, which is unheard of at a food trade show.

Instead, Kashi created a massive green structure with “less than 1%”, representing the amount of organic farmland in the U.S. and highlighting its Certified Transitional program, which encourages farmers to switch to organic.

Forgoing the traditional trade show booth was a very savvy move by Kashi brand manager Natalie Knopp and her team, and it did more to create conversation and raise awareness about this issue than anything else could have.

This is out-of-the-box thinking at its finest.

kashi-trade-show-booth-expo-west-transitional-organic-farmland

 

STONYFIELD

stonyfield-best-trade-show-booth-expo-west-2017

Stonyfield and its digital marketing firm Agency of Trillions figured out a brilliant way to keep attendees coming back to the booth – by creating different art installations each day of the show.

The company hired Tracy Lee Stum, a world renowned, professional 3D street painter who has created works in 28 countries around the globe, to create three themes: Day 1 – ‘Cow Selfie’; Day 2 – ‘Milk a Cow’; Day 3 – ‘Big Bowl of Blueberry Yogurt’. What made it so successful was that the art conveyed the company’s key messaging in a very authentic and organic way.

For this booth, Tracy Lee Stum and her team employed ‘chalkboard’ style works, which were seen in the signage throughout the booth. The installations were created with oil pastels to appear as chalk drawings, and the team used a technique called ‘anamorphic projection’ to create 3D images.

It is awesome to see such amazing artistic talent on display at a food trade show.

stonyfield-best-trade-show-booth-expo-west-2017-cows

stonyfield-best-trade-show-booth-expo-west-2017-blueberries

stonyfield-best-trade-show-booth-expo-west-2017-steel-cow

stonyfield-best-trade-show-booth-expo-west-2017-gary-hirshberg

 

GAIA HERBS

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The main theme around Gaia Herbs’ booth was its 30-year celebration. It had an exhibit pointing out key highlights in the company’s history, a bar at the front of the booth serving golden turmeric milk, and a living wall.

Yet, the one aspect of this booth that made it really stand out was the interactive experience. You sat on the bench, put on cordless headphones, and listened to peaceful music while watching video footage of the company’s organic farm in North Carolina.

With more than 80,000 attendees and nearly 2,800 booths, Expo West 2017 proved to be a very hectic few days, but this experience at the Gaia Herbs booth centered and calmed me like no other. I could have stayed there for hours.

Angela McElwee, President of Gaia Herbs, and her team truly brought what was needed — a lot of tranquility to a frenzied trade show floor.

Interactive experiences, such as this one, will be an emerging trend at booths in future Expo West trade shows.

gaia-herbs-best-trade-show-booth-expo-west-2017-interactive

gaia-herbs-best-trade-show-booth-expo-west-2017-living-wall

gaia-herbs-best-trade-show-booth-expo-west-2017-retrospective

gaia-herbs-best-trade-show-booth-expo-west-2017-sign

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9 Comments

  • Mic says:

    Max, I am a big fan and love your insight and all that you do for organics, but I have mixed feelings about the Kashi “booth”. While I thought it was unique and captured the attention of passers-by including me, and was for a good cause, I also immediately thought about all the small, dedicated organic companies that scrap together their life savings to have a shot at a booth at Expo and then work their butts off at the show. I also thought of the many cool organic food companies that can’t even attend because it is just too expensive. I thought, wow, Kashi is so big and has so many resources that they can just drop around 50 to 100K (or more) on this prime show space and not even have anyone there to answer questions and explain/educate, etc. They should have had some transitioning and organic farmers there to explain, educate and add a ‘real people’ element.

    • Max Goldberg says:

      Hi Mic,

      Although Kashi was not giving out samples, they did have people standing at the booth explaining the Transitional Organic program that they launched. Also, I have given plenty of my previous awards to smaller companies in the past, many of whom have very limited budgets. I don’t want to penalize larger companies simply because they have bigger budgets. However, I also acknowledge that they have more money at their disposal and can get more creative.

      Thanks for your feedback!

      All the best,
      Max

      • Craig says:

        Although Kashi’s “booth” was probably very expensive, the point missed here is that their message was fundamental and for the educational benefit of all in attendence, including those who couldn’t afford to pull off such a memorable piece. As a relentless advocate for the “little man,” I feel the need to point out that while most booths pushed their own product (as is the whole purpose of a trade show), Kashi promoted the overriding cause.

        Another note: It doesn’t take much money to be creative. It takes insight and follow through.

        Nice job Kashi!

  • Judy says:

    Wow, thanks for sharing info about the really cool booths you found. Amazing.

  • Will Phillips says:

    Kashi really pushed the creative envelope to new levels this year while also driving home a critical message; very impressive!!

  • Thanks Max for bringing these awesome booths to our attention.

    Kashi drove home a message that needs to be heard not just in the USA. We so need ORGANIC FARMING to spread throughout North America.

    Way to go KASHI !!!

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