Face-to-Face Report : December 2010
Exhibition Industry Revenue Up 5.6% in Q3 2010
According to the Center for Exhibition Industry Research (CEIR) Index report, trade show data collected for the third quarter of 2010 indicates positive growth in all metrics for the first time since early 2008. The now broken string of nine consecutive quarters of negative growth was an industry record surpassing the seven consecutive quarters between 2001 and 2003. Projected Q3 2010 revenue ($1.82 billion) showed positive growth of 5.6% over Q3 2009 ($1.72 billion).
CEIR reported that the leading indicator to look for in the exhibition industry recovery is an increase in professional attendance. Professional attendance began showing improvement in the second quarter and continues to lead improvement with 6.6% growth over the same period in 2009. Both net square feet of exhibit space sold and number of exhibiting companies show 5.2% growth over the same period last year.
As an objective measure of the annual performance of the exhibition industry, the CEIR Index measures year-over-year changes in four key metrics to determine overall performance.
Taking Social Media to the Top: Promote and Enhance Your Next Event
A new industry white paper, “How to Properly Use Social Media to Enhance and Promote Your Event,” published by the International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE) Social Media Task Force, is now available online at no charge. The publication shares many key elements affecting exhibition organizers and exhibitors including research, marketing, strategies, case studies, legal issues and the benefits of social media.
While there are several strategies for social media noted in the publication, one excerpt states: "Social media practices can benefit event organizers in a number of ways including brand extension, access to online member/customer networks, ability to deliver real-time customer service, opportunity to offer collaborative educational programming, advertising, promotion and public relations, potential reduction in marketing and communication costs and opportunities to implement ‘green’ event practices."
Other key strategies focus on event owners. According to the report, nine of the most important elements that should be incorporated into an evolving social networking strategy are: establish goals; figure out where to focus and measure your results; leverage the social networks of your attendees and exhibitors to drive attendance; add social media to the show floor; leverage show content to drive social networking after your event; reward your most active followers; choose the right tools to measure your success; build your followers; and know what is going on out there, i.e. EventBuzz (paid tool).
IAEE President Steven Hacker, CAE, pointed out that research shows we are a much more social media-savvy organization and industry. “One of IAEE's strategic initiatives for 2010 is to dive into the new arena of social media and better understand how it is impacting exhibitions and events industry professionals,” he says. In the future, the association plans to continue to provide essential tools and information for members so that there is a shared confidence among everyone promoting, planning and executing events.
Click here to download the free white paper.
2010 Virtual Event Report
The Trade Show News Network and Onstream Media Corporation released a new 27-page report entitled, "2010 Virtual Event Report: Insights & Trends from Industry Insiders," that guides event industry professionals on building brand awareness, generating new revenue streams, and attracting larger global audiences.
Both the research and the findings offer insight into which elements to look for in a virtual event platform, revenue and monetary return strategies, the future of the virtual event industry, and how to leverage virtual events for competitive advantage. More than 800 trade show industry professionals responded and 16 industry writers, bloggers and subject matter experts contributed commentaries to the report. Some of the key findings include that content is still king (online video is the most desired feature) and virtual events enable companies to reduce their carbon footprint.
Click here to download the free report.
New Tips on Using Twitter, Blogs and Facebook
Lessons in social media that are extracted from a classroom environment can benefit event planners, too. How so? Because in certain ways, instructors and event planners do similar things: They each put together a program and guide a crowd of people through its successful completion. Here are three tips from former college instructor Alvina Lopez, contributing author at Engage365, on how to use social media (the “collegiate way”) at your next event.
Use Twitter to crowd source questions and ideas for your event. To stimulate fresh and unrefined conversation, assign a hashtag to a specific project and have team members Tweet rough ideas about the event in order to brainstorm plans for its creation and execution. Another advantage of Twitter is that, because anyone can see your Tweets, you can actually start marketing your event to potential attendees.
Use blog posts and the blogging community to draw out discussions. A blogging platform, especially one that allows you to protect content, can serve as a vehicle for creating further and more nuanced discussion. An event planner can use a team blog to refine that list of ideas created through Twitter. Select several of the best Tweets, and post them as prompts to a team blog. You could tap into other bloggers, especially those interested in the particular niche of the event, in order to further refine ideas for the event as well as build interest among the community.
Use Facebook to start building your community and to collaborate with team members. Because Facebook allows users to create events, send out invitations, update event statuses, and communicate with attendees, it could work well as a way of managing the run up to and day of the event. Not only could you use Facebook to communicate with attendees, but also you could use the Groups feature and create a specific group for your team.
New Report Added to Library of Free CEIR Research Available for ABM Members
ABM members from around the globe continue to take advantage of the association’s partnership with the Center for Exhibition Industry Research (CEIR), designed to provide ABM members with important, timely information on the world of face-to-face – all at no cost.
New CEIR research provides insight into the recall factors of attendees regarding a particular exhibit on the show floor. The study is an update to the report, "Most Memorable Exhibits: An Analysis of the Factors Affecting Exhibit Recall," published in 2000.
Studies have shown that memorability can influence purchasing decisions that are initiated at a later time, and it builds long-term brand awareness equities as well. Consequently, the size of the booth continues to be an automatic recall factor for several reasons:
- Larger booths typically represent better-known companies;
- Larger booths' physical dominance and visibility is memorable;
- Repeated exposure that results from anchor positions in the highest floor-traffic streams reinforces recall;
- Small exhibits can be successful if attendees have an interest in the displayed products; there are also effective pre-show promotion and booth staff who have the skills to engage attendees.
Other top-requested CEIR reports include the 2010 Index report, an analysis of the 2009 exhibition industry and future outlook; "The Power of Exhibitions in the 21st Century," which offers a wealth of insight into how new generations of attendees want to connect, learn and network at events; "Effective Methods for Visitor Promotion," which analyzes the most and least effective tools for attracting visitors and reveals the average spending on pre- and post-exhibition promotion; and "Digital + Exhibiting Marketing Insights," a comprehensive analysis of the influence of digital media on the exhibition industry.
Contact Kate Patton with your request(s), and the research will be e-mailed to you directly.
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