As companies review the budget for the upcoming year and make plans on whether to attend a trade show, and if so which one, often managers will ask, “What are the benefits to our organization of taking time away from the office to attend a trade show?” Years ago attending a show was the only way to see new technology and compare manufacturer’s equipment, but with everyone posting videos online of their equipment, has it made trade shows obsolete? Definitely not! There are still countless benefits to attending a tradeshow.
- Finding Solutions – have a difficult job or application that you’re not sure how best to tackle? A tradeshow can be perfect for finding a solution. By bringing that problem to a show there’s an opportunity to look at multiple possible solutions, talk to experts in the field, and often even run software or machinery and immediately determine if it’s a viable option. Generally this can be a great way of crossing ideas off the list quickly and zeroing in on the right answer.
- Networking – by attending a show local to the area, such as the EASTEC show in Springfield, MA, there are hundreds of people to meet – all of whom are interested in keeping manufacturing strong in New England. This can be a great way to connect with potential vendors and customers. Keeping work local can save everyone money and keep everyone’s business going strong.
- Education – many equipment manufacturers still present their newest products to the market via trade shows. Visiting machine manufacturer’s booths for the equipment already in your shop is a great way of checking in with them to learn about new upgrades or products that might enhance your operation and provide for improved efficiency. Experts in the field make informative presentations about new developments and plans for the future.
- Purchasing Power – most of the manufacturer’s bring equipment in from all over the country to display at the show but are not anxious to ship it back, this can be the perfect chance to get a great deal on machines. This can be somewhat limiting in terms of various options that may come on the machine. However, if you know prior to the show that you’re going to be looking to make a purchase, contact the manufacturer. Generally, they’re willing to modify the machine going to a show to fit your needs if they know they have a buyer, however these decisions need to be made at least 60-90 days prior to the show, so call early.
While most buyers come to trade shows more educated than ever before, thanks to the incredible depth of information available online, there are still many benefits to actually attending a show in person. So gather information and come prepared to have focused discussions about your specific needs with industry leaders capable of providing answers.