Anyone who has worked in events knows that the week or so before registration goes live is a heady mix of nerves and excitement. That’s where we’re at in the InstallerSHOW cycle as I write this. If you run an annual event, it’s easy to assume you have plenty of time for all sorts of ideas, tools and planning. After all, your show happens once every 12 months so how hard can it be?
Or, as one of my non-events working friends said recently: “But what do you DO for the other 11 months of the year?” I get it, it seems like a reasonable question. Until you work in events and then you very quickly understand the enormous amount of work, talent and effort that goes into creating an annual show on InstallerSHOW’s scale. Not to mention the fact that this year’s show is going to be across two halls at the NEC. I’m shockingly bad with directions, so I may need some kind of tracking device if I’m ever to be found again after 10am on 25th June. It’s going to be epic.
Working in marketing for an event like this means that the year has a defined split between exhibitor comms and visitor comms, and we’re about to tip into the visitor cycle – which is probably my favourite, but don’t tell anyone!
I love the visitor cycle because we’re talking directly to our event audience – the people who are willing to take a morning, afternoon, day, or in some cases, full three days off work to come to the NEC, which is a big ask in these times.
The show is truly immense – it’s been dubbed “an installer’s paradise” and every year that I’m involved, it feels like it has taken a massive leap forward in terms of the sheer scale of it, the number of exhibitors, the vast array of products and solutions available to see and the ambition of the team behind it. The behind-the-scenes squad on InstallerSHOW really is incredible and every team member puts so much into this yearly event because they truly believe it’s the best in this industry.
I’m also blown away by the loyalty, goodwill and excitement that it generates. I’ve never worked on a product that has such buy-in from both attendees and exhibitors. The trades arena can feel as if it is awash with shows, making it difficult to stand out in such a packed market, yet InstallerSHOW is unique. The buzz in the venue is like nothing else, so if you haven’t been before, make 2024 the year you attend.
And it’s not just about volume. Yes, the show is vast and we’re looking at 600+ exhibitors for 2024, but if it was just a numbers game, we wouldn’t get the incredible feedback that we get year-on-year from visitors who tell us they love the show and will take a day off the tools to attend every June.
Trade shows offer so much – in a few days you can benefit from brand visibility and recognition, market analysis, competitor insight, breakthroughs and innovations, networking and, not least of all, content. For the visitor, they can serve as a much-needed break to catch up on the latest products and guidance, not to mention a fantastic opportunity to meet up with old friends and make new ones.
One of the themes for this year’s show is ‘Prepare to be surprised’ and with multiple brand-new features, top name expert speakers and a workwear catwalk, featuring the latest kit modelled by real tradespeople, there will be plenty to surprise even our regular visitors. I can’t wait.
Registration for this year’s show goes live next week, so remember to grab your ticket to what will be the trade event of the year. See you there!