Trade Shows - are they worth it?

For years, trade shows, exhibitions and events have been the ideal opportunity to generate leads and enquiries for B2B companies, especially those who sell products and services to the manufacturing and events industries. However, in recent times, it could be suggested that business has subsided at such events, but how has this happened? We have looked at three different reasons why.

The cost of attending trade shows: this has risen quite significantly over the past few years, mostly due to the amount of businesses declining the opportunity to have stalls, with those that remain picking up the bill. Depending on the event, the cost of the exhibition and trade shows can vary quite substantially, which also depends on the size of your booth.

  • Decline in footfall: another big reason in the decline in the success of trade shows is the decline in footfall. Quite simply, exhibitions are less appealing to exhibit at, as fewer people attend them. But why are less people attending? Well the answer is what we are using now; the internet. Research into products or services can be done with a few clicks and presses of buttons online. Exhibitions themselves are now able to publish the list of exhibitors online, so anyone planning to attend the events can view who they need to speak to quickly. Simply put, day-long events take up too much time in the digital age of today.
  • Buyer power: the power of the buyer has shifted very much from the seller in to their hands because of the growth of the internet. For a long time, if you were searching for advice on a product or service, you would contact the business directly. The reality is your customers will not get in touch unless they are able to buy.

Battery-expo-2There are still businesses that attend events and exhibitions that get very little in terms of sales or leads from the events they attend, and you must ask “why do you go?”. The answer to this is ‘brand awareness’. Lots of businesses do this, as it is habitual. They go to the same events for years, just to ensure that people are aware they are trading or that they will recognise their logo elsewhere.

Not all trade shows, events and exhibitions are a waste of time and resources – however, businesses need to determine what shows are right for them. Finding cost effective solutions is important. This year, I have been visiting shows as a guest, to gauge footfall and cost effectiveness to determine whether events would be commercially advantageous for us in the field of threaded inserts in future years. I believe that this is the best method in determining the advantages and benefits of trade shows, events and exhibitions.

Blog by Dan - 28th June 2019

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