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CEIR: Social marketing for trade shows is highly effective

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Dallas—Trade show exhibitors largely rely on traditional promotional channels to attract visitors to their booths, but the few trying out social marketing rank it among the most effective, according to a newly released report from the Center for Exhibition Industry Research.

Most commonly used promotional channels include handouts (used by 62% of exhibitors), followed by e-mail (61%), giveaways (58%), print ads (51%) and online ads and direct mail (both 49%).

While only 11% of exhibitors said they used social networking to attract attendees, they rated its effectiveness second only to hosted hospitality events.

The CEIR survey, “Effective Methods for Visitor Promotion, Part II: Exhibitors,” included the responses of 218 exhibitors polled online in the first quarter of 2009. Part one, which detailed the responses of show organizers, was released in July.

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