America’s exhibition industry declined 12.5 percent in 2009, according to Center for Exhibition Industry Research. It fell by 3 percent in 2008.

I can’t find hard numbers, but anecdotally I’ve noticed New Zealand exhibitor numbers and visitor numbers are down at many of the trade and public shows.

It seems the expo business faces the same challenges as newspapers and magazines. Not only are marketing budgets are being squeezed, but increasingly the money is being spent online with Google Ads and social media growing rapidly.

The difference is Expo companies don’t have the option of an iPad strategy or building an online paywall.

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