Ways to Grow Your Exhibition
Exhibitions are a fantastic way to create networking opportunities and bring products directly to their intended audience. However, if your events are not experiencing a growth in popularity and notoriety their impact will be somewhat limited. An increase of attendees and exhibitors is essential for the success of current and future events, as this exposure will lead to increased revenue generation. Below are some suggestions for how you might continue expanding the reach and scope of your events in the future.
Attracting more attendees is vital to event growth management. Exhibitions are only successful if people show up interested in buying goods or services. Exhibitors will not pay to participate if you cannot guarantee strong audience participation. You can potentially grow your attendance by creating both vertical and horizontal events. Horizontal events are replicated events designed to serve a different geographical area. For example, you may have an exhibition on the East coast, but still have an underserved audience in the Pacific Northwest. To cater to this audience you might consider adding an event in Washington. Vertical events are designed to focus on a niche group of attendees from your audience. These are supplemental events that play upon a specific need within your market or field and are not meant to compete with your primary exhibition.
A common method for those attempting to grow their events is to embrace the global community. Exhibitors have been shifting focus from national and local communities to larger global markets, and the benefits are obvious. Limiting yourself to a local audience is denying a potentially huge pool of investors, exhibitors and attendees. Savvy event managers are now positioning their events as global gatherings with exhibitors from more countries. This adds to both the credibility of the exhibition and the attendance of the event with a larger potential audience.
Event growth is also based upon the bottom line – revenue generation. Revenue is based on both attendees and exhibitors, so in theory larger events will be more profitable. However, event managers shouldn’t just charge a fee for admittance and hope everyone agrees. Revenue may increase or decrease based on the needs of your exhibitors, and as such your budget should be somewhat malleable. Some exhibitors may need assistance with receiving or setup. General contractors may be required for booth creation and power. Providing accurate information and appropriate access to services will increase your revenue and promote a solid working relationship with your exhibitors from across the country.
In addition, attendees often pay a fee to attend exhibitions. Providing the amenities and services your audience needs will encourage people to pay this attendance and add value to their experience. Maps and informational booklets help connect attendees and exhibitors with similar interests. Providing amenities such as water, restroom access, and food services will also encourage attendance and help increase revenue.
By focusing on these three main target areas of attendance, exhibitor participation, and revenue generation you can work to successfully grow your event. Understanding of your markets and expansion opportunities will increase your audience reach, while thinking globally will lend credibility and variety to your exhibition. Using these techniques you can increase revenue and experience a growth in popularity for your event.