Industry exhibitions feeling the pinch
Following on from the IOG's decision not to stage a Groundex exhibition in 2003 comes the news that at least four key industry companies have decided not to exhibit at the Scotsturf exhibition in November.
The decision does not come as a great surprise. For some time there has been concern about the number, the quality and the timing of so many industry related exhibitions.
The IOG alone staged 4 exhibitions in a 3 month period in 2002 -Saltex(September), Groundex(September), Sportsturf(October) and Scotsturf(November).
In addition, there is the BTME and Clubhouse event at Harrogate in January.
With the cost of exhibiting so high, and with no accurate means of measuring the effectiveness, it is hardly surprising that companies are being more selective about where they spend their money.
In the past, companies have felt obliged to attend all of the exhibitions for fear of giving the impression that their business was not performing. That is no longer the case.
More and more companies are seeking to get value for their money. Many are cutting back on their exhibition marketing, preferring to organise their own one day seminars, road shows etc. In this way, they can present their products in the right environment and to a target audience of their choice.
Earlier in the year, we sought members' views on the Trade shows - 31% were in favour of 1 show per year, only 12% felt the balance was right, and 23% voted for a bi-annual formula. 27% said it was a good excuse to meet old friends.
A clear vote for change and a clear message for the decision makers in the industry to move with the times.
The companies can see the way forward and, by their actions, are forcing the pace. It is up to the organisers to take note.