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9 Reasons Michael Hughes Is Optimistic About Trade Shows in 2010 and Beyond

There are a handful of people who have nearly omniscient access to insightful data on the health of the trade show industry.  Skip Cox, Lee Knight, Don Freeman, Doug Ducate, and Michael Hughes regularly see reams of research on what exhibitors are doing and plan to do. 

So when Michael Hughes gave 9 reasons “Why I am Optimistic” that trade shows will rebound in his December 7th, 2009 industry analysis column, it’s worth listening to what he has to say.

I’ve summarized below the 9 reasons Michael Hughes feels that trade shows will bounce back from the last painful two years and continue to thrive as a powerful marketing medium in the future:

  1. Economic rebound from deep global recession
  2. Attendees still like trade shows
  3. 90% of trade show managers think the worst is over
  4. More exhibitors expect trade show budget increases
  5. Trade show media has competitive advantage over other media
  6. Face-to-face exhibitions give access to high-level buyers better than digital media
  7. Growing overseas companies will want access to U.S. buyers
  8. U.S. consumers are eager to resume spending
  9. Innovation within the exhibition and events industry

While Michael Hughes does point out that 2010 will not be a record breaker, and that the industry is responsible for continuing to innovate and add value, he concludes, “The bottom line is that I’m positive because people have an inherent need to meet, and the Internet is not the sole solution for building brands and driving sales or communicating and learning.  The data is suggesting we are at or near the bottom.  Recovery may be slow, but it will be real and sustained.”

To read Michael Hughes’ full analysis, just click on the word “fullscreen” in blue text below to open and read his article.

Want to get more out of your 2010 trade shows?  Click here to get your free copy of the 32-page White Paper, What’s Working in Exhibiting, which reveals best practices in improving results, stretching budgets, lead management, promotions, exhibit design, and more.

About the Author

Mike Thimmesch was Skyline Exhibits' Director of Customer Engagement, for over 25 years. He is now retired and spends his time freelancing, traveling, and enjoying time with his family.

3 responses to “9 Reasons Michael Hughes Is Optimistic About Trade Shows in 2010 and Beyond

  1. I would tend to agree with this article falling into the glass half full camp. There will always be a need for trade shows even if the Internet has been responsible for taking away a percentage of footfall. Nothing can match face-to-face interaction and the ability to see products up close and in person.

  2. I just returned from performing at the NRF (Retail Show) in New York City. I was impressed by the size of the show, and the enthusiasm of the attendees. I had never worked this show before, but I heard the 2009 version was like a graveyard. This year provided compelling contrasts. Attendance was high and so were spirits.

    So this may be good for those of us who work in the trade show industry regularly.

    Best,
    Mark Brandyberry, CM

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