CEIR Releases 2016 Changing Environment of Exhibitions Report

July 16, 2016

The Center for Exhibition Industry Research released the first two reports in its newest series, 2016 Changing Environment of Exhibitions. This study, which is an update to research conducted in 2011, consists of 10 fact sheets articulating the power of exhibitions from the perspective of exhibitors.

Since the last study conducted in 2011, the U.S. economy has enjoyed modest growth as it has recovered from the Great Recession of 2008. CEIR Index results have documented consistent, positive growth in the exhibition industry. At the same time, digital continues to grow in use as a marketing and sales tactic.

This study monitors exhibitor use of the exhibition channel, its positioning in the marketing mix and perceptions of exhibitor executives on key issues that can impact the use of exhibitions today and in the future.

The 2016 Changing Environment of Exhibitions study dives into the minds of executives who are involved in the decision to exhibit at business-to-business exhibitions, as well as other promotional and advertising decisions for their company. It documents the use of business-to-business exhibitions today, the level of participation now compared to several years ago as well as executives’ plans to exhibit looking out to the next several years. Issues addressed include:

·  What other marketing and sales tactics are exhibitors using and what is the business-to-business exhibition channel’s position in this mix?

·  Is digital still ascending in use and what impact does that have on exhibiting?

This study provides insights on these and other questions that paint a picture of today’s marketing and sales landscape among companies that use the business-to-business exhibition channel. It provides insights on where exhibitions stand today and the outlook for the next several years.

“This study provides an objective look at the use of business-to-business exhibitions as well as other marketing and sales tactics these companies are using to promote and sell their products,” said CEIR President and CEO Brian Casey, CEM.

He added, “Readers who download these fact sheets will see fairly strong trends in the use of integrated marketing and that exhibitions play a solid role in supporting exhibiting companies’ most urgent marketing and sales objectives.”

This series of 10 fact sheets highlights how and why face-to-face marketing at business-to-business exhibitions is holding its own in today’s integrated marketing environment, beginning with the first two reports, Exhibitions Are Highly Valued in Achieving Marketing and Sales Objectives and Marketers Intend to Maintain or Expand Number of Exhibitions.

Key findings indicate that exhibiting companies place high value in using exhibitions to achieve their top priority marketing and sales efforts:

·  Most Prevalent Top Priority Marketing Objectives: Building or expanding and reinforcing brand awareness, target business sector promotions, new product or service promotions.

·  Most Prevalent Top Priority Sales Objectives: Relationship management and engagement efforts with customers, key accounts and prospective customers, generating sales leads, generating orders with existing customers and prospects.

·  Alongside the economic rebound from 2008, 40 percent of exhibitors are participating in more exhibitions today than they were several years ago. Looking forward, many will maintain their current level of participation while 24 percent will continue to add exhibitions to their schedule, thus indicating further modest growth in the industry in the next several years.

“CEIR is pleased to have secured funding to repeat this important trend study,” Casey said. "We were able to capture a representative sample of the industry through the cooperation of the general service contractors that allowed us to poll their exhibitor customers.”

CEIR would like to thank its supporting sponsors of the 2016 Changing Environment of Exhibitions study: the Exhibit Designers + Producers Association (EDPA), Group Delphi and Sho-Link.

“CEIR is the go-to resource for exhibition industry research,” said EDPA Executive Director Jeff Provost. “EDPA and its two member companies, Group Delphi and Sho-Link, are pleased to provide the funding to make this research possible. Fact sheets from this study series are invaluable resources for organizers, exhibitors, and suppliers to the industry, including our exhibit designer/producer members.”

“CEIR’s research is always an excellent barometer of the trends in our industry, and we are honored to partner with them on such an important study,” said Justin Hersh, CEO of Group Delphi. “The findings we’ve seen so far corroborate what we at Group Delphi know from experience: as digital continues to grow, experiential remains an essential and irreplaceable facet of the marketing mix.”

“Sho-Link is proud to help sponsor such an important project, as the information accumulated and disseminated by CEIR offers actionable insights to our entire industry,” added Scott Rudel, president of Sho-Link.

Exhibitions Are Highly Valued in Achieving Marketing and Sales Objectives and Marketers Intend to Maintain or Expand Number of Exhibitions are available for download from the CEIR website. Non- members may purchase each report for $49.

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