More than 30 years ago, I had just accepted a new position in the government organization where I worked and I was instructed to organize our participation in a trade show. For me, that was a totally new experience.
Although I had visited many trade fairs, I had no idea what was needed to produce a professional and well-organized presentation. I also had no idea of all the advertising and marketing opportunities that a scholarship offers. Fortunately, I was surrounded by professionals who knew how to approach such a project. Nevertheless, it was still a surprise to see how many sleepless nights were involved in ensuring that our presence at the fair went smoothly.
Opportunities to promote our participation were limited to a few advertisements in some related magazines, a short interview in a newspaper and a minute of broadcasting time at a local radio station. I was constantly wondering how we could ever reach the people who, I hoped, would be interested in attending the show and, more importantly, coming to our booth.
When the doors of the exhibition complex opened, visitors flocked in for three days. This was understandable, because for many it was the only way to keep abreast of the latest innovations, remarkable products and services that had never been offered before. Making new contacts and maintaining existing contacts were also inextricably linked to visiting a trade fair.
With the dawn of the digital age, numerous opportunities have emerged to establish contacts with suppliers and other companies in the sector and to become acquainted with innovations, without having to travel to an exhibition building with all the associated hassle. Is it actually still useful to invest time, money and energy in what some call an outdated concept?
My answer to that question is a resounding yes! It certainly is. No matter how advanced the current technical communication options are, they do not provide an alternative to personal contact. This is possible in every way at a fair like Oceanology International. Let us seize this opportunity with both hands.
Shortly before this issue of Hydro International was printed, Oceanology International 2020 announced that the exhibition is to be postponed until December, following the escalation of COVID-19 in Europe. Our team will produce a show special with the latest updates of the trade show and we’ll be publishing the Show Daily. Don’t miss out on these excellent opportunities to inform your customers. In the meantime, keep sending us your news updates.