The exhibition and trade show industry is witnessing unprecedented change due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It can even be argued that it is one of the worst hit industries, with virtually all shows getting cancelled without any future date in sight. One of the biggest problems this situation poses is the difficulty both organizers and participants will face in preparing for trade shows when there is no specific timescale or deadline to work with. Reorganizing such events require a fair amount of money and time, and without knowing what the future holds for this industry, it has become increasingly stressful for all those who are involved in it.
So, what can we expect when the industry does open up? Will there be a decrease in footfall? Will virtual shows become the new normal? Is there a need to prepare new marketing strategies? Undoubtedly, it will take some time for the industry to bounce back, and it will soon, but that only thing that will have changed is how we work within it. Let us look at some changes that we can expect from exhibitions and trade shows in a post-pandemic world.
1. Having a Plan B in place
There is no denying that organizers and participants always have contingency plans in place, but the magnitude of this pandemic was surprising to everyone. Nobody was prepared to deal with the large-scale financial implications of thousands of cancelled shows. In the future, events will and should be organized with a potential disaster scenario in mind, including better cancellation terms, tighter contracts, and so on. Preparing for a cancelled event should be as important as preparing for a successful one.
2. Enhanced emphasis on hygiene
In a post COVID-19 world, personal and trade show hygiene and safety as well as behavioral etiquette will surely take center stage. While measures like temperature checks and preventing sick people from attending may be short-term solutions, some practices will become the rule. That includes sanitization stations, which are definitely a must. Additionally, social distancing might also be followed.
3. Increased use of technology
The trade show industry has always been tech-savvy, whether in its use of digital displays at booths or digital marketing. However, as it resumes after the pandemic, there might be a more focused attention on leveraging the powers of technology. Livestreaming and VR experiences are some ways in which shows can ensure attendance as well as add value to their programs.
Even though the present situation is bleak, there is reason to be optimistic about the future. With the necessary changes in place, it won’t be long before you will be looking for custom trade show booth displays for your company.