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Professional Convention Management Association

Meeting Industry Leaders Join Together to Predict the Future of Trade Shows

by User Not Found | Jan 14, 2013
Research uncovers five “what-if” scenarios for the future of exhibits - - and how to prepare for them


Contact: Carolyn Clark
Direct: 312.423.7271, E-mail: cclark@pcma.org  

Research uncovers five “what-if” scenarios for the future of exhibits - - and how to prepare for them

CHICAGO, Illinois, January 14, 2013 – A new report analyzes the future of trade shows from five hypothetical perspectives to provide insights into creating more impact with exhibit space.

Scenarios for the Future: Convention Exhibits and Trade Show of 2016 is the product of a year of face-to-face discussions, online conversations and extensive research within the exhibits industry. With funding from the ASAE Foundation, Center for Exhibition Industry Research Foundation, Freeman, Gaylord Entertainment and the PCMA Education Foundation, the report outlines what trade show and convention exhibit organizers can do to maintain continued relevancy, deliver more leads and ensure financial success.

“The future of trade shows can’t be predicted by conventional survey methodology,” Liz Erikson, Chair, PCMA Education Foundation, says. “Rather than conducting traditional research, we gathered some of the best minds in the meetings and events industry in small and large group discussions to visualize where our industry is headed and what we’ll need to do to prepare.”

In addition to industry leaders, the research included perspectives from exhibitors and attendees to determine the way forward.

“This study clearly demonstrates that the future will not resemble the past,” Francis Friedman, President of New York-based trade show consultant group Time & Place Strategies, says. “New marketing methods, new formats for interactions and rapid changes in social media will require new approaches to audience development and building event brand loyalty.”

Key findings illuminated in the full report cover:

  • Five Scenarios for the Future – The design principles, potential risks and business model indicators associated with each approach
  • Four Essential Elements to Create an Unrivaled Experience – The essential ingredients for crafting a “wow” event
  • Top 10 Takeaways for Updating Your Exhibits Plan – Complete with descriptions and a discussion guide for further exploration
  • Assessment metrics tables – Key questions your team can use to gauge performance

Download the complete findings.

For an in-depth look and interactive discussion at the findings, meeting professionals can attend “PCMA Education Foundation Presents: Reimagining Convention Exhibits and Trade Shows” at PCMA’s Convening Leaders in Orlando on Tuesday, January 15 at 3:15pm.


About PCMA Education Foundation

The role of the Education Foundation of the Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA) is to support the mission of PCMA through fundraising and grant giving focused on scholarships, education and research that will advance the meetings and conventions industry. Established in 1985, the Foundation fuels advancement, nurtures professional development and shapes tomorrow’s meeting and convention leaders. Learn more at pcma.org/foundation.

About Professional Convention Management Association 

PCMA is the multi-channel professional resource and premier educator for leaders in the meetings, conventions, events and trade show industries. PCMA provides their 6,000+ members with a community of likeminded colleagues, innovative education and creative global solutions to enhance both their professional development and their organization's face-to-face and virtual connections. Headquartered in Chicago, PCMA has 17 chapters throughout the United States, Canada and Mexico with members in more than 35 countries. For additional information, please visit the PCMA Web site at pcma.org.

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