T3 Expo Applies Design Thinking to IAEE’s Expo! Expo!

The Problem

When it’s with the right partner, change is a great thing. International Association of Exhibitions and Events® (IAEE) embarked on that journey when it issued a competitive RFP to get ideas on how to make its annual Expo! Expo! meeting and exhibition more memorable and more shareable, by incorporating the best ideas from other leading association and corporate events.

IAEE celebrated its 90th anniversary in New Orleans, LA this December, and wanted to use the anniversary to demonstrate how the organization is poised for growth. While traditions and roots are important, IAEE had recently undertaken a rebranding effort and wanted a partner to activate its new hip and futuristic feel for the organization.

The IAEE was looking for a partner that could bring something new, and creative to IAEE and its attendees. It was looking for a new vision for its event design, an inside/out approach, and a way to bring together the rich history of the IAEE along with bright future.

The Association was also looking to take advantage of the upcoming venue in New Orleans -- a fun-filled city with a great vibe where they are also celebrating their 300 years as a city. Couple all of this together with a new brand look and feel that IAEE just launched too.

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The Solution

IAEE chose T3 Expo as its OSC (official service contractor) because T3 Expo was able to put together a unique one-of-a-kind proposal that outlined all of the elements that IAEE wanted and more.

“It was T3 Expo’s corporate experience applied to new trade show models, design and innovation combined with the company’s creativity that stood out among other organizations we spoke with,” said Scott Craighead, vice president of Exhibitions & Events International Association of Exhibitions and Events – IAEE. “T3 Expo gave us so much more strategic execution counsel than we asked for and we knew that by choosing them to partner with, our shows will be a unique and fun experience for every attendee.”

IAEE recently went through the process of creating a new brand—that included a new look and feel -- using hexagon shapes of blues and greens. T3 Expo proposed incorporating the new branding into all the elements of the show, including registration and the media center. In addition, T3 Expo placed various sized hexagon shapes on the floor – creating pathways to different stations and exhibitions.

T3 Expo also proposed bringing the vibe of New Orleans into the event by infusing blends of French, Spanish and U.S history- and acknowledging the 300th anniversary of the City (founded in 1718).

The aisles in the exhibition featured famous street names of the City, such as Duval Street, instead of traditional numbers. In addition, T3 Expo took inspiration from different areas of the city that represent its culture: a Voodoo Lounge; Inspiration Alley, and elements from Crescent Park and the French Market. This all came to life through different landmarks throughout the show floor as well as strategically placed musicians, street performers, a unique DJ and local artists.

“We were so honored to be selected as a key partner and general service contractor for IAEE’s Expo! Expo!,” said Chris Young, chief creative officer and co-founder T3 Expo. “IAEE has been an important part of T3 Expo’s history, starting with the place we chose to launch our company nine years ago, and where we won the ‘Best of Show!’ We look forward to continuing our strong partnership with IAEE, helping demonstrate what shareable moments are all about, and are excited with the opportunity to showcase the T3 Expo brand.”

T3 Expo works to execute its mission with their clients to do things differently – to have passionate people working to create environments that bring people together to discover, learn and connect. By doing so, T3 creates and delivers an entirely new trade show experience from conception to execution.

“We are the largest association of the exhibitions and events industry in the world – and we are so excited to have T3 Expo partnering with us to demonstrate and showcase its creative talent and innovation, which the company has been known for since its inception,” added Craighead.


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