Combining Strategy with Tactical Agility to Drive Event Success

AUTHOR: Derse  /  September 20, 2018

CATEGORY: Exhibits

Fairbanks Morse at POWER-GEN 2017

POWER-GEN, the world’s largest power generation event, features thousands of products and services to industry professionals, associations, and press each year.

POWER-GEN attendees were the perfect audience for Fairbanks Morse to launch their latest technology—the Trident OP 3.8 MW opposed piston diesel engine. The new engine boasts 50 percent fuel efficiency which is a crucial aspect to POWER-GEN attendees and exhibitors.

To effectively launch the Trident OP, Fairbanks Morse needed to network with potential customers at the show and demonstrate the engine’s full-range of capabilities. Due to the sheer size of the engine, they needed to scale the experience in a way that still showcased the impact of the engine while providing attendees with a memorable experience.

A three-pronged approach to globally launch the Trident OP engine:

1. Scale the Experience

The Fairbanks Morse team knew they would need to find a unique and intriguing way to secure pre-orders on a product still in development. A 1:6 carefully crafted and fully-functioning scaled model was designed to showcase the value of the Trident OP engine. Furthermore, Bluetooth technology was integrated into a touchpad that allowed users to explore the engine’s functionality through a custom-designed virtual model with digital overlays of product content.

2. Think Through the Details

Due to the complexity and cost of building the Trident OP scaled model, Fairbanks Morse was only able to build one version. The scaled model became an extremely valuable and important commodity and therefore required the most careful white glove treatment. Due to the 3D printing production, the Trident OP engine model had extremely specific care instructions:

  • Do not exceed 90 degrees or it will melt.
  • Do not fall below 20 degrees or it will crack.
  • Do not allow it to undergo prolonged vibration or it will break.

Derse’s Solution

A climate-control straight truck dedicated to a single crate with a custom-built shock absorption tray that delivered the model to the show floor completely intact.

3. Engage and Drive Business Results

Once the scaled engine model was safely delivered to the trade show floor, Fairbanks Morse could focus on implementing the educational element of their trade show experience. Face-to-face marketing enables brands to communicate with people in the exact language they prefer. In this case Fairbanks Morse felt that educating attendees through sight, sound, and touch would make the biggest impact:

Graphics and Canopy
Pairing large graphic panels with an overhead canopy created an inviting environment for exploration and intimate conversations.

Looping Video
Looping video content educated audiences on the ingenuity of how the engine transformed from a “cocktail-napkin sketch” to reality, while attendees used a digital interface to learn about the inner works of each engine compartment.

Whiteboard Engagement
Finally, a whiteboard engagement piece allowed Fairbanks Morse product experts to brainstorm with attendees how the Trident OP engine can deliver a better tomorrow for their organization.

Each audience engagement opportunity was distributed via social channels to extend the reach across a larger global audience.

At the conclusion of PowerGen 2017, Fairbanks Morse built a nurture marketing list of 345 leads.

  • canopy
  • custom-built
  • details
  • engagement
  • Fairbanks Morse
  • global launch
  • graphics
  • looping video
  • nurture marketing
  • Trident OP
  • whiteboard



BIO:Derse is a complete face-to-face marketing agency and exhibit builder with more than 450 employees and six full-service divisions. Ranked as a Top 10 Experiential/Event Marketing Agency by Advertising Age and B2B Top Shop by Chief Marketer, Derse brings a smarter wins approach to exhibits, events and environments for client programs in more than 50 countries.