Weekly News & Insights: CEIR Reports on Spending & Value of Trade Shows

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The Center for Exhibition Industry Research (CEIR) released a couple of new reports this week which validate the dollars spent on trade shows. “How the Exhibit Dollar is Spent” states that exhibiting companies spend more than $24 billion each year on exhibitions. It’s no surprise that the largest part of that is spent on space rental (36 percent). To see a complete breakdown of spending percentages spent on booth design, travel, promotions, and more, ExpoWeb has a handy pie chart. (Sadly, exhibitor education comes in last at a mere 1 percent.) To order a copy of the report for $24, go to the CEIR site.

CEIR has also released a report on the “Use and Value of Face-to-Face,” which lists exhibits the highest-valued type of face-to-face interaction at 48 percent, according to both exhibitors and attendees. Sales calls came in a distant second at 26 percent.


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With experiences as both an exhibitor and a show organizer, Marlys Arnold has a unique perspective on trade show exhibiting. As an exhibit marketing strategist, she travels the country consulting and training on how to create experiential exhibits that produce significantly higher numbers of qualified leads. She’s led workshops for events ranging from local consumer expos to some of the largest trade shows in the U.S. She hosts the Trade Show Insights blog/podcast, and is the author of Build a Better Trade Show Image, the Exhibitor Education Manifesto, and the ExhibitorEd Success System. Exhibit Design That Works (the first book in the YES: Your Exhibit Success series) debuted in July 2017. She’s also the founder of the Exhibit Marketers Café, an online education community.

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