5 Reasons to Consider Custom Rental Exhibits

There are a variety of reasons companies consider a custom rental for their trade show exhibit versus purchasing a custom-built booth. Whether they’re looking for a more low-cost investment option, trying to beat the clock, or simply need flexibility, custom rentals can be a great solution for many organizations.

Lower investment

Trade show marketing is an investment, but one with a very strong ROI. Many of our clients pursue custom trade show rentals to test new markets or events as a trial run for a potential long-term solution. If the new market or event goes well, our clients will often invest in a full, custom exhibit. The custom rental option allows our clients the financial flexibility to invest at their comfort level for a one-time event before making a commitment to a full, custom exhibit for the long-term.


At nParallel, we offer our clients the opportunity to utilize our custom rental inventory of materials in conjunction with custom elements to create an exhibit that is uniquely theirs – and for a portion of the cost. Our clients choose from a vast array of designs, sizes and custom features to create an exhibit that is perfect for them. We may use different components from around our warehouse, but we can promise that no two exhibits will ever look the same on the show floor. Our clients never run the risk of a duplicate next to another exhibitor. Something that we love about custom rentals is the ability to change a client’s booth from show to show by using different components each time.


Renting gives leeway on timing. If, for example, jumping into the trade show market is a recent decision and you only have a two or three-month window (or less)until the event, building an entirely new display may not be possible. Renting, however, provides a prime option for this scenario. A custom exhibit can take up to several months to complete, depending on the size of the project, whereas our custom rental booths are created in a matter of weeks.


Renting is easy. We have more than 100,000 square feet in our warehouse – home to hundreds of thousands of materials that are ready for a custom rental package. We also produce all our very own graphics in-house, providing a unique and personalized look for each exhibit. This all saves an immense amount of time since much of the fabrication has already been done in-house, allowing us to focus on using our time to make our client's exhibit perfect for the event.

Test It

We provide the opportunity for our clients to test layouts that have already been created and have been successful. This allows each client to discover the qualities important to them in a future booth.  If you are considering investing in a booth in the future, we strongly encourage taking the time to test drive the product. We find that clients value this as it provides a hands-on opportunity to customize the booth to the company needs.

Not sure which option to go for? Shoot us an email at, and we’ll be sure you get the solution you need.


4 Trade Show Tips to Rock This Year

Trade shows are amazing opportunities for companies: they provide an interactive display space to meet new clients and market new products or services. However, exhibiting at a trade show can often come with the added pressure to have the most compelling trade show set-up and make the best impressions possible. Here are a few tips to help meet your visitors’ expectations, and to alleviate stress for your company:

Plan early

One of the prime things you can do to prepare is to start your trade show planning as early as possible. Six months should be the minimum amount of time spent in preparation. Make sure to clearly define your goals, objectives, marketing plan, management strategy and appropriate budget.

Find the right partner

Exhibit houses can be found across the world, but finding the right one for your brand will be crucial. Exhibit companies should make their clients’ jobs easier by accomplishing the company’s business goals through strategic and creative interactive displays and trade show booth ideas. At nParallel, we always start by asking a lot of questions. Our goal is to ask all the right questions up front so we can move to designing a concept that our client loves.

We value an "open-door policy" with our clients, and find this helps with the success behind our partnerships. This "open-door policy" means that at any time during the project, our client knows exactly where we are at in the process. We work hand-in-hand and communicate effectively with our clients to streamline approvals and alignment.

Build a great team

Your trade show setup will only be as effective as the people representing it, so verify that your trade show floor team is at the top of their game. Choose your best people for the job; not everyone is suited for customer service and standing on their feet for several days at a time. Choose individuals that are welcoming, approachable, direct and quick on their feet. We suggest that trade show staff go through a training session, which is also something we help many of our clients create and execute. This ensures that teams feel prepared to present the brand and products with strong etiquette and expertise.


Always prioritize follow-ups with the clients, or even potential clients, you made connections with at the trade show. Whether through an email, handwritten note, social media, or an in-person meeting, always make sure to go above and beyond with follow-up materials. It is always good to reach out within one day to thank them for visiting your booth and offer to send more materials, if applicable. 

2 Different CTAs to Use for Your Trade Show

Truth be told: there is not a single layer of trade show planning that is insignificant. Much like the engine in a car needs every piece to function correctly and efficiently, so an interactive display needs even the most minor details in line to achieve company goals. However, there are aspects of these events that play a more significant role in generating business - one of them being a company’s call-to-action (CTA). 

A company’s CTA should propel customers into action with your brand, particularly at a trade show. Your on-site trade show CTA should always position your potential client to be in direct communication with your associates. Whereas social media, website or other CTAs may encourage your audience to engage with a 15-day-trial, subscribe to a newsletter or watch a product demo video.

We’ve experienced working with many organization that unintentionally neglected to create or build a trade show plan around this action. Let us share a little bit about how important it is to have two different CTAs to support a trade show.  

On-site CTA

Often, trade show attendees leave an event excited about a few companies, only to see it fade into a distant memory shortly after. This is a problem for businesses because they want to generate long-term leads, not short-term fanfare. We recommend creating an on-site CTA that is different from CTAs that you may use in other places.

The on-site trade show CTA is what takes the attendee from fan-status into a committed client. If an exhibitor is strategic, they’ll be sure that the on-site CTA leads to being in direct contact with an associate from your team. This moves the potential client from being a visitor at your booth to an individual who is having an email conversation, phone call or lunch with one of your salespeople.

Your staff member is then responsible for moving the potential client through the sales funnel and on a trajectory to becoming a long-term customer, all through the on-site CTA of making the personal connection. If the CTA doesn’t lead to direct communication with your team, you might have no way to creating longevity with your potential client, and that leaves the ball in their court and a chance at a competitor being in direct communication, instead of you.

Off-site CTA

CTAs should change per platform. For example, your social media or website CTA would be different than your on-site trade show CTA. Social media is at the top of the sales funnel; it allows you to be in front of your client until they’re ready to pull the trigger. It’s a place that allows you to encourage them to learn more, hear your thought leadership and seed opportunities for them to try your product. You may use this platform to communicate a 15-day trial or encourage them to think through their current product or service and how yours may differ in a stronger way.

It would be great if a brand saw your social media post and directly called your sales team to set-up a meeting, but most the time it doesn’t happen that way. Social media and online are great places to share compelling content that can later lead to a sales conversation.

As you continue to develop and improve your trade show planning and trade show booth ideas, be sure to keep these two different CTAs in mind. And as always, we’re happy to help you determine the best CTAs for your brand.


NParallel Named Top American Fabricator

At nParallel, there is always a secured effort to go above and beyond. As an exhibit builder, we take the representation of our clients’ brands as serious as we take our own. Throughout the years, we’ve taken time to celebrate the successes of our clients and we are thrilled to take a moment to celebrate a success and milestone of our very own. This week we have learned that nParallel has been named one of the 2016 Fab 50 from Event Marketer. This recognition is given to 50 event and trade show exhibit builders in North America and we couldn’t be more honored and thrilled to be part of this announcement.

As a two-time recipient of this recognition and the only Minnesota company on the 2016 Fab 50 list, we receive it with honor. We know and believe that it is the partnerships we have with each of our clients that has allowed us to be a recipient of this great award. We want to express our sincere thank you to all of our clients that have helped make this recognition possible. We could not do what we do without you, your commitment to nParallel, and your support. We highly value each and every one of you.

We look forward to finishing 2016 out strong and we want to thank Event Marketer for this opportunity and privilege to be a part of this year’s Fab 50. To see the full list and learn more about the Fab 50, please visit Event Marketer.






We Don't Believe What Happens In Vegas Should ALWAYS Stay In Vegas.

The 2015 Digital Signage Expo is wrapping up in Las Vegas and our team was able to walk the floor. They brought back some ideas that we hope to incorporate into either retail or trade show solutions for our clients in the future.

A. Realfiction holographic displays
This is a rentable product display that uses a hidden flat panel monitor and reflection to create the illusion of floating holographic imagery over a physical object.  The devices can be built into a branded pedestal allowing us to customize them for a client and their website offers a collection of stock animations that can be customized for quick low cost solutions for a client looking for an easy wow factor.

B. Planar Transparent Screen
We’ve worked with the Planar Box here at nP for a couple of our clients.  Now Planar is offering a larger clear screen that can really give customers that Hollywood effect.  The screen is as transparent as glass but when an image appears it is opaque and easy to read.  Oddly, you can’t see the image from the back!  The screen simply appears clear.

C. Kolaz by AGAM
AGAM’s new addition allows designers to create clean modern retail fixtures using SEG, powder coated cladding or hard panels.  By incorporating a shelf standard slot along the outside of their regular SEG channel, they have allowed for retail hardware to be incorporated into the panels in a visually clean way.  We’re looking forward to using this one!

D. DS&L Backlit Panels
This was a very cool product.  Not a video display device, this was more about dynamic color and movement in an unexpected media.  DS&L combined a SEG frame with a dark grey fabric and back lit it with an array of LED RGB tiles.  The effect was like a lava lamp and did not feel like a monitor or projected image that you would normally expect.  They make these to spec so it’s definitely a purchased item but in the right place it could make for a really cool effect.

E. Projection Mapping in Retail
While hardly a plug-and-play option this technology is making it’s way all sorts of applications.  While you may have seen projection mapping used in events and in movies, this technique has been finding its way into trade show and retail.  In this image, the car actually has no color or detail at all.  It is simply a grey shape.  All of the detail ( paint color, windows, wheel rims, etc) is being projected onto the model via 3 hidden projectors.  This allows an attendee to select different paint schemes and options from the touch screen and see the result in real time on the model in front of them.  The illusion is quite stunning!

F. Micro video for retail
These little video players were designed to mount to the front edge of a shelf in a retail setting.

G. Flexible LED
Video content keeps getting more and more flexible.  Gone are the days when video has to live within the confines of a 16x9 rectangle.


NParallel Brings Ad To Life On A Real Helment For Unequal

Nothing brightens a rainy day like fresh work with a new client. We were honored to help Unequal announce that they’ve been named as the official Protection Partner of SMU football by bringing a two-dimensional ad to life on a real helmet for the announcement gathering at SMU this past weekend. Stay on the lookout for our additional retail work with them in the near future!

Bridgestone At GATS 2014

It's a great feeling each time we're able to help our clients complete a successful show. Here's a look at Bridgestone's latest booth at the GATS show in Dallas this past weekend...Great work team!

2015 MLB All-Star Game

As you may or may not know, the 2015 Major League Baseball All-Star Game will be played in Cincinnati. We helped New Era Cap outfit the Reds’ stadium with some signage that was unveiled last week…here's a sneak peak for you!

NParallel Raises Money For Diabetes Research Through Golf Tournament Sponsorship

Here at nP, not only are we passionate about doing good work, but we are also passionate about doing good for the world. One of the causes we raise money for is diabetes research, and this year we are getting involved with a charitable golf tournament that donates money to the work being done at The Schulze Diabetes Institute at the University of Minnesota. In the 18 years the tournament has been around, it has raised over $5 million in support of diabetes research! You can learn more about the tournament by clicking on the link below, and if you are interested in getting involved also, please let us know!

NParallel Honored On Event Marketer's Fab50 List

nParallel is pleased to announce its inclusion on Event Marketer Magazine’s Fab50 list. This list serves to highlight the top 50 fabricators serving the U.S. event and exhibit industries, and it is the world’s only editorial listing of top exhibit builders. In its 2nd year of existence, this list was created to serve as a comprehensive guide for use by event marketers in search of the best exhibit fabrication partner. Each company featured on this list was required to submit information on their business, people, culture, clients, capabilities and competencies for consideration. This information was analyzed both by editors of Event Marketer and the analysts of the Event Marketing Institute in order to ensure the selectivity of the list.

A combination of numerous factors contributed to nParallel’s inclusion on this list, including upgrades in CRM, accounting systems and marketing efforts, the addition of a new CNC machine to its fabrication facility and the addition of several new employees in all areas of business. In addition to these factors, nParallel’s creative capabilities also played a role in its inclusion on the list. Over the years nParallel has come to be known for the scope of its creative capabilities, an attribute showcased recently when its work for Aveda won a Best Booth Award at the 2014 International Salon and Spa Expo.

“Everyone on our team was thrilled to hear we made this year’s Fab50”, said Megan Diamond, President, nParallel. “Our inclusion on this list is not only due to the ongoing efforts of our entire team here at nParallel, but also due to the fantastic clients and partners we have. We want to thank them for continuing to allow us to do the type of work that merits our inclusion on this list. We also offer our congratulations to the other Fab50 honorees”.

NParallel's Work With Aveda Wins Best Booth Award At ISSE 2014

Minneapolis, Minn.- nParallel is pleased to announce its work with Aveda recently won a “Best Booth” award at the 2014 International Salon and Spa Expo. Aveda’s presence at ISSE 2014 marked the first time in 10 years that the company has exhibited at a domestic trade show. The company called upon strategic trade show and event services consultant, Triad Conferences, to assist in its search for the right exhibit house to reintroduce its trade show program to the US. Resulting from a long history of successful collaboration on a number of projects, Triad turned to nParallel for their expertise in creative design and dedication to client service. “Our experience with nParallel has consistently been that our clients’ expectations are exceeded in every dimension, and the Aveda project is another tremendous example of this”, said Ranae Hanson, Owner, Triad Conferences. “Design and execution of such a stunning booth is the reason that nParallel stays top of mind when our clients are in need of new exhibits, or enhancements to existing properties”. nParallel (Minneapolis, MN) is a full service agency of trade show and retail professionals that designs and produces custom exhibits, displays and fixtures that establish brands in trade show, retail and corporate environments. Aveda (Blaine, MN) is an international beauty company, renowned for its focus on the art and science of plant and flower essentials in the creation of all its products.

Aveda tasked nParallel with creating an eye-catching oasis that would be both functional and fantastical, and would feature the theme of its new product collection, Culture Clash. In addition to the various product demonstrations that would need to happen inside the booth, it was Aveda’s desire that show attendees would feel as though they were transported to another time and space upon setting foot inside the booth. nParallel drew inspiration from a number of wide-ranging sources including the recent Aveda Congress theme, Nomad. This theme, Nomad, was designed to embody the idea of “culture clash”; the meshing of old with new, classic with modern, familiar with otherworldly, from all different parts of the globe. Working in constant collaboration with Aveda, nParallel utilized unconventional materials to create a 30’ x 40’ Island Exhibit that was both visually stunning and effortlessly functional. From its exterior crate structure and living plant-wall, to the giant LED displays and interactive product demonstration areas, nParallel’s design married whimsical charm with technical brilliance. With their featured products in place, the expert team from Aveda was able to successfully utilize all elements of the booth to involve show attendees in a transformative experience. “We challenged nParallel with the creation of a non-traditional trade show booth that featured specific experiential elements designed to showcase the Aveda culture, mission, vision and values”, said Kevin Molin, Vice President Technical Education, Aveda. “Their understanding of our goals was creatively reflected in both concepting and execution of the booth design and fabrication. nParallel not only met, but exceeded our expectations.”

About Aveda

The art and science of pure flower and plant essences is the core of Aveda. Their beauty products are alive with the life force of plants, and contain pure essential oils. While they specialize in hair care, they offer plant based products-skin care, makeup, pure-fume™, aromas and lifestyle-that are all professionally developed, clinically tested, and go to exceptional lengths to be respectful of the earth. Their professional network, nearly 7,000 salons and spas worldwide, shares that same commitment.

About nParallel

From inspiring exhibits, to innovative displays, to inventive fixtures, nParallel creates structural marketing solutions that personify brands and captivate customers. They are committed to forming partnerships with their clients, and are passionate about service excellence. Whether the venue for connecting with your customers is a show, a store, a mobile marketing environment, or your headquarters, the seasoned pros at nParallel will collaborate with you to fulfill your big-picture vision.

Wilson Tool Chooses NParallel To Build Their New And Improved Trade Show Exhibit

As a leading independent manufacturer of tooling systems for the metal industry, Wilson Tool saw the 2013 FabTech trade show as an opportunity to revamp its booth, so that its booth’s display accurately reflected the dedication to customer service, ease of doing business and use of advanced technology that define the company. Wilson Tool approached nParallel with the challenge of designing and updating its booth with these goals in mind. nParallel was excited to partner with Wilson Tool, to turn this opportunity into a successful reality. nParallel worked collaboratively with Wilson Tool to design an engaging booth experience that showcased the company’s technical capabilities through distinct but cohesive display areas within the booth space. Most importantly though, was the booth’s overarching theme: the human element of “We are Wilson”. As the company places great emphasis on tailoring its business around its customers’ needs, Wilson wanted to showcase the fact that they are so much more than just the parts they produce. From the booth design, to the graphics and text used on signage, to the interactivity of each different segment of the booth, all of these components were created to familiarize booth attendees with Wilson’s dedication to maintaining the highest level of customer service and facilitating easy business transactions regardless of the complexity of a given solution. Wilson Tool sees this human element of customer service and ease of doing business as its differentiating factor, as compared to its competitors.


The technological elements nParallel utilized to showcase Wilson Tool’s technical capabilities included use of projected imagery on a hanging screen in the front of the booth, iPads integrated with product information, video conferencing technology developed by Wilson, and large display screens with looping video, as well as strategically placed lighting elements. With its eye-catching and unexpected motion, the use of projected imagery on the hanging screen was designed to draw attention to the new product display, and attract attendees into the Wilson Tool booth. The use of iPads in the punching product area gave booth attendees greater access to the products, allowing them to interact with each different product, rather than just observing them as static objects. Wilson’s video conferencing area allowed booth attendees to interact with a live company representative, showcasing both ease of doing business with the company and the company’s dedication to accessible customer service. Finally, the large display screens in the booth played two different videos on loop; one video highlighting the company’s technical capabilities and the other presenting past case studies and successfully implemented solutions. Based on feedback from the 2013 FabTech show, nParallel’s design of Wilson Tool’s booth was a resounding success. nParallel appreciates Wilson Tool’s partnership on this project, and looks forward to partnering with the company on future opportunities.

Everything worked well! The booth set-up was outstanding and everything ran very smoothly from beginning to end!- Dean Mazeska, Sales

From concept to reality, nParallel brought incredible energy, organization and innovative design to our new trade show presence. Their insight into our business model, the attention to detail and their collaborative approach translated into an energized show environment to work in. This was clearly reflected in the booth traffic movement – easy to navigate, product interest in every corner and on many levels.As an added bonus the new booth took only minutes to open and close each day – something the working staff greatly appreciated. We are looking forward to a continued partnership with nParallel.  I would highly recommend nParallel for their professionalism and creativity. -Deeny Raasch, Marketing