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OPINION: Trade fairs no longer have a role in marketing procurement

In it’s hey day, The IDMF was one of the first things marked on the calendar for client decision makers and suppliers alike. A healthy audience giving suppliers an opportunity not just to sell its products and wares, but a chance to network with other senior people within the industry. Client-side marketers could rest assured that they would be able to door step more or less every potential supplier, and it was typically the place where new products were unveiled.

But times change. Exhibitions are not what they once were. On the whole attendee figures have been in free fall. A result not simply of the increasing demands on client-side marketers’ time, but also why should they wait to go to a show, when the show can come to them? Why should they wait 12 months to make decisions on partner companies? Supplier marketing and customer acquisition is a much more intelligent science in today’s environment.

Suppliers want more customers now and at a lower cost of acquisition than shows deliver – they will develop complex and integrated comms programs that deliver more targeted messages to the right audience – suiting both parties in an ideal world.