Nine Key Event Industry Terms

Like every other industry, the event industry is full of jargon, and, if you're unfamiliar with the terms, you may wind up lost and confused. To plan a successful event program for your company or brand, it is important to be literate when it comes to the lingo associated with the job. To make things easier, we've put together a list of key event industry terms we are often asked to define. 

1. COI

COI, which stands for certificate of insurance, provides proof that an insurance policy has been purchased and typically states the type and limits of coverage. Most events will request a COI from every exhibitor, and have specific requirements. 

2. Drayage

The term "drayage" dates back several hundred years. It is derived from the word dray, or to draw; to describe the action of horses pulling a cart or wagon. In the event industry, drayage is the charges incurred for the movement, protection, storage and control of shipments once delivered to a venue. Drayage is also known as "Material Handling" in the industry. 

3. Dwell Time

When it comes to events, dwell time is how long an attendee stays at your booth. In theory, the longer the dwell time the better. This is definitely a metric your company/brand should be measuring. Long dwell times are ideal for forming relationships and sharing information about your services and products. 

4. Experiential

Experiential marketing is a strategy that goes above and beyond to create a memorable experience between the event attendee and the brand.

Ex. We created an experiential display for Travel Channel, where we offered the attendees an interactive, memorable experience, utilizing a green screen and an iPad activity. 


5. KPI

KPIs, which stands for key performance indicators, evaluate the success of an organization or of a particular activity. Different businesses use different KPIs. For more information, click here.

6. Labor

Labor is the services performed and productivity created by workers who are usually receiving wages. Each event has different requirements, but many shows will require you use their provided labor (i.e. union labor) for specific tasks, so be sure to take that into account during planning.

7. Peninsula Exhibit

A peninsula exhibit is an exhibit or booth that has aisles on three sides. Typically, a peninsula booth is 20'x20' or larger, and is often called an "End Cap." 

8. Pipe & Drape

Pipe and drape is a decorative option for exhibit booths. It can make up the back and sidewalls of an exhibit booth, and is created by suspending draped fabric from pipe.

Ex. This is one of our Dish displays. The black draping to the left is an example of pipe and drape. This is also a "Peninsula" exhibit.


9. Show Decorator

A show decorator is a company that provides event services, including labor, material handling, rental accessories, and so forth. The show decorator will often distribute an exhibitor kit or manual outlining all of their services and providing necessary forms. 

Have a term you think should be added to the list? Comment below with the term and its definition! 


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