Despite the drop in attendance and booth size, show runners and marketers aren't necessarily viewing the change in a negative light. Everyone seems to agree that learning how to succeed in the new world of trade shows will ultimately breed a healthier industry. “You've got a better quality of attendee,” Riggins said.
Bartholomew agreed: “When it comes right down to it, unless you can bring someone into your facility, the next best thing is a trade show. The people that are coming into our booth are interested in finding solutions. They wouldn't be there unless they were serious.”
And, Ducate said, targeting those attendees will breed innovation. “The exhibition industry is on solid ground. I think our best days are ahead of us because we're finding all kinds of new ways to exhibit. There's indication that there's a sea change in how events are produced. I think that's exciting.” M