Trade shows are significant for many reasons. They give companies the opportunity to present themselves to the customers, meet with potential partners, and get a glimpse of their competitors. Moreover, in smaller towns, they become some of the biggest events in the life of the community. Here are 13 most interesting facts about trade shows:
1. Marketing Is up to the Participants
Sure, the trade show markets itself, but it is the content – the companies presented – that attracts visitors to the event. And every business should promote themselves and invite the visitors to see their presentation on their own, without any interference from the organizers of the trade show.
2. Employees Are Often Non-Pros
When you see a booth that you find interesting and come up with it, you will most likely not find the company's best advertiser. Companies often even hire someone for a temporary job to represent them at a trade show. On the one hand, you'd like to hear professional answers to your questions, but on the other hand, it gives you the opportunity to talk to someone unbiased.
3. Representation over Sales
The point of participating in a trade show is to generate leads, not to sell a lot of stuff. They are more of informative events. Therefore, you are not expected to buy everything you ask about. This means that you can go around asking all sorts of questions without being judged as a window shopper.
4. Printed over Online
We are used to having everything online, but trade shows are places where you can get that old-school feel of printed hand-out media. This is probably the only place where the companies pay as much attention to those as they used to, which poses a greater challenge to their creative writers. And since writers are no longer really trained to write for printed media, they come up with inventive solutions, or – hilarious flops.
5. Products over Brands
Another significant feature of a trade show is that companies advertise their products, not themselves. It is the product that's in the center of attention and not the brand label put on it. This means that you will normally have the opportunity to take a good look at what you are actually buying, and not at from whom you are buying it.
6. Direct Communication
At trade shows, you get the chance to actually talk to the companies' reps about their products, without them staring at the screen all the time. This is something you don't get all too often these days.
7. No gimmicks
When so many competitors are concentrated in a small area, there is absolutely no room for gimmicks. Companies can only represent themselves as what they actually are.
8. Free Stuff
In an attempt to attract audiences, companies will willingly make competitions with fun prizes, or even downright give samples away for free. After all, what better place for that than a trade show?
9. You Are Not Obliged
Whenever you get something for free from a company, or just ask the company rep a lot of questions, you might feel obliged to buy something from this company. Well, this is not the case here. The very point of a business being present at a trade show is to answer all possible questions and give out free samples. So when you leave, you are free as a bird, with no obligations whatsoever.
The companies represented here are all about attracting your attention, and free stuff that they give out is only one way. They apply their creativity to get your attention. Talented writers work at what the rep will be talking about, up until the jokes they tell. So, you are in for a show!
Companies often treat the design of their booths creatively. At times you may see some artsy shapes and curves. Sometimes, they may even employ a young and aspiring artist to do the job. Even if you don't find anything to your sophisticated taste, then you are sure to find something hilariously and/or charmingly clumsy.
12. Aisles Are Located Randomly
The organizers often place the companies' booth in no particular order. This means that you can walk and walk and walk all through the area and still have the chance to find something worthy. They do not concentrate the most interesting stuff in the most visible places.
It's not only the free samples that the companies give out. They are often also willing to hand out their gear – t-shirts, baseball caps, etc. And, admittedly, this stuff is sometimes actually neat, something you can actually wear outside your home.
To conclude, both organizers of trade shows and companies represented there are interested in you and your attention, and they will apply their best effort to get it.
Kevin Nelson started his career as a research analyst and has changed his sphere of activity to writing services and content marketing. Currently, Kevin works as a part-time writer at the BreezeWriting. Apart from writing, he spends a lot of time reading psychology and management literature searching for the keystones of motivation ideas. Feel free to connect with him on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Linkedin.