My God, what a world. If you have never done a tradeshow you probably don’t want to. Imagine shopping with your mom for 9 hours a day for 5 days straight while work just piles on your desk. And then you get delayed at the airport. Arrive home for one day before leaving to do it all again. Shopping with your mom, for your mom.
The real issue here is if tradeshows work.
Sure back in the good old days stores buyers flew to the big show for there industry because “everyone” was there. There were a lot of small independent stores which had very little time to research their industry. New sellers/manufacturers had to meet customers and test the marketability of their product. Buy a booth, make signs, write orders and hopefully decide that you have a viable business that you want to invest your life in.
Cities bid on tradeshows. Billion dollar complexes are built.
Then one day out of nowhere the Internet comes along. All of a sudden you can IM China, find distributors in Chile through email and test your product by investing $400 in Monster Commerce. Someone is left holding a potato.
A big potato.
There is still some obvious value. Some of the buyers don’t have Internet or email and are thinking of getting a car phone soon. Meeting people and networking are of a huge value as well as seeing what the competition is doing. But I would bet that the best bang for your buck does not mean standing at a tradeshow for four straight days. there has to be something better.
The technology that is hurting the tradeshow business is also the technology that helps make change happen. With this technology you don’t have to pay your dues. And that is exactly what tradeshows are, paying your dues.