kubik Then and Now: A Retrospective Look at Event Marketing and Brand Activation

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As kubik gets ready to celebrate its 40th anniversary this September, we decided to look back at what’s changed in our industry since we first opened our doors in 1983.

We are blessed with a diverse group of individuals, many of whom have spent decades dedicating their careers to the world of experiential marketing, live events, and branded environments. We asked them to highlight some of the biggest changes that they have witnessed over the years.


With over 25yrs of designing brand experiences, here’s what Adriano, kubik’s Head of Creative Services & Strategy, thinks:

“When I started out designing exhibits and events, brand managers craved wonderfully complex and rich environments. They felt this created a positive reflection of their brand. Today, we’re seeing a contrast. Presenting an efficient and sustainable image now outweighs opulent finishes and luxury for many brands. The focus has shifted to crafting rich user experiences instead.”


David, VP of Global Accounts, is also a 25+ year industry veteran and tells us:

“The growth of experiential corporate briefing centers over the last decade has been incredible. Marketers have realized that meetings at their offices can also be a brand experience that will show positive ROI.!”.


Jack has been overseeing kubik manufacturing for nearly 20 years and he says:

“We’ve seen great advancements in quality in all areas. For example, the resolution of fabric printing today is amazing, even lifelike, and nearly seamless!”.


Antoinette has been a fixture in our Amsterdam team since 1999 and is currently our HR & Process Manager. She says:

“…sharing information between offices and colleagues is easier. It feels more like one big worldwide company compared to when I started. But the fun thing is, that the major scope is still the same! Bringing people together, presenting and exchanging ideas. That never changes!


Elliot, our President and nearly 40yr industry veteran, feels that our industry has gotten a lot ‘lighter’:

“Aside from the trade show industry taking a much more experiential approach… I believe one of the most significant changes has been the use of SEG fabric graphics; allowing for extremely large-scale, high-resolution content to be stretched across very light weight structures.”


With 25yrs under his belt, Cory, kubik’s graphics guru, says it’s all about the tech:

“The increase in digital content has had a significant effect on our industry. We can now incorporate augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), live streaming, interactive kiosks, and social media to create immersive and interactive experiences for our clients.”


And yet, for all our advancements, there are still some things that Sam (our founder and CEO) wishes hadn’t changed:

“I really miss conceptual marker renderings that were almost like pieces of art. Today all creative work is digital and leaves little to the imagination.”  


Completing our impromptu poll, Vickie – SVP of Client Experience, had the following to say:  

“When I started out most clients and even event managers were men.  It is so great to see how many women now lead marketing departments and agencies. Another big change has been the use of technology and interactive digital content.  20+ years ago, an LED wall running a product video was considered hi-tech.  I also love how today’s events focus more on the customer journey and experience rather than filling a space with products.  Event marketers want their audience to walk away with a positive emotion and brand experience.”


In short, it would seem that our veterans and experts are seeing many positive changes and evolutions within the experiential events and trade show industry. We’ve collectively become more efficient and more diverse while our focus has shifted from simple ‘show & tell’ tactics to caring more about creating positive human engagement with our brand partners.

We look forward to experiencing what the next 40 years will bring!

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