Communication and promotion during the Trade Show

The trade show is a commercial and marketing tool of fundamental importance for the companies of many productive sectors and as such its planning plays an important role also for the purposes of the company budget. The constant increase in competition and an increasingly saturated market of products mean that often “improvised” participation, without adequate planning and ad hoc preparation, leads to results far below the potential of the product or service.

The management of the relationship with the customers is the primary reason for attending trade fairs for those companies with a well-established position in their market, so the fair becomes an opportunity for meeting, appreciated by the client, as at least at that time has the opportunity to talk with the company representatives (the commercial structure and in many cases also the owner), to discuss important issues and solve problems that are not dealt with by the sales network.

Even the most recent research confirms that the fair is the main marketing and communication tool for companies. By limiting the field to this sector of companies, and in particular to those who have their own market in B2B, there are not many communication tools available: advertising in specialized magazines, dissemination of newsletters, and communication to current and potential customers. Through the sales force and, obviously, the fairs.

A brief analysis of the offer leads to highlighting some facts:

  • A significant increase in international events, which over the years have gradually become specialized both in the product sectors and in the various production states. This changed the objectives of the fair by a generic promotion of the offer, transforming it in the event of communication aimed at the target audience;
  • From the traditional orientation to the exhibitor, there has been an evolution towards an orientation to the visitor: specialization is one of these facts, together with different attraction rays depending on the type of product and market. For highly internationalized B2B markets, there are a limited number of international events where the whole offer meets all the demand for that specific product;
  • A growing internationalization of the fairs, which are increasingly central for the promotion of the company’s offer on foreign markets. To this end, we cite a significant figure: in 2000, the trade fairs of the main European countries showed an average presence of about 40% of exhibitors coming from other countries, given that in some sectors it also reaches 60-70%. On the other hand, about a quarter of visitors come from foreign markets, also highlighting this figure a constant growth. To give an Italian example, the last Salone del Mobile held in Milan had over 50% of international visitors, compared to about a fifth of foreign exhibitors;
  • A development of fairs in geographic markets traditionally not covered. The fairs are part of the European mercantile culture, and indeed a significant number of sectors in Europe have the main trade fair event worldwide. To the benefit of the exhibitors, it should be noted that very often events on new markets – especially in Russia – are organized by the fair organizations that manage traditional events in Europe.