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January 23 2019Exhibition industry

Exhibitions score points with networking and experiences

AUMA surveyed exhibiting companies about the advantages of trade fairs over digital instruments

German exhibiting companies consider trade fairs to offer considerable advantages over digital instruments – like social media and virtual marketplaces – for their B2B communications. This is one result of a study commissioned by AUMA – the Association of the German Trade Fair Industry – and carried out by KANTAR TNS.

Ninety-nine per cent of the exhibitors surveyed consider personal contact and the opportunity for direct networking to be significant advantages of exhibitions. Ninety-five per cent see an advantage in the opportunity to advise potential customers directly through company employees with a wide range of expertise.

Eighty-two per cent of companies surveyed see the ability to address all five senses in authentic product presentations to be a significant advantage of exhibitions over digital formats. Closely related to that is the finding that nearly 50% of exhibitors consider it important that products can be tested at trade fairs with no obligation to purchase them. And 60% see a sustainable positive effect for their companies if they can create experiences for trade visitors.

AUMA views the survey results as evidence that most companies clearly recognise how exhibitions can distinguish them from competitors who rely primarily on digital communications. This does not mean exhibitors see the question in either/or terms: 62% also use social media in their B2B communications, for example, and 49% use online advertising.

The “AUMA MesseTrend 2019” study is based on a survey of 500 representative German companies that exhibit at fairs with a focus on trade visitors. The study also presents results on questions about the general significance of exhibitions in communication portfolios, on the development of the respective budgets and on the goals of exhibition participation. The complete study will be published in the second half of February 2019.



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