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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The evolution of trade fairs

Everything evolves in this world. From gliders of yesteryears to modern day jets, change has been the constant phenomenon that hasn’t changed evolutionary change haven’t even spared trade fairs which have evolved from strict official meeting platforms to hi-fi trading extravaganzas. The glossy showpiece events that we visit today were in the past a pale shadow of what they are now. In the yesteryears, the focus was only on official buyers and suppliers.

The visitors were chosen according to their buying powers and general public used to stay away from the trading events. Cutting edge technologies were never in the touching distance of the general buyers, who normally used to wait a few months for the launch of their favorite products. But over the years, the market evolved and the sellers realized the actual buying potential of the common men. Hence, certain organizers started involving enthusiastic buyers in these trade fairs.

The formula was an instant hit and the trend caught on. With each passing year, more and more commoners started visiting trade fairs. A new niche market was created where the end user had access to all the latest and greatest innovations. B2C fairs became an instant rage amongst the masses. The traders started giving importance to the trade fair infrastructure and began implementing new tactics to woo the common men. New innovations were incorporated in the trade fair planning process, keeping the interest of general public in perspective.

Free gifts, celebrities’ performances and classy infrastructure were a few of the major alterations that were seen in the trade fairs. With the start of huge competition between the various organizers, the standards lifted and the quality of the trade fairs skyrocketed to new heights. The fairs that we visit today are a result of all these years of competition.

Whether the evolution has helped the cause of the trade fairs is a question that is quite difficult to answer. On one hand, it has added new dimensions to the trade shows making them more vibrant and livelier than ever before, and on the other it has hampered the official nature of these events. Modern day fairs appear casual and leisurely and hence lack the discipline of the past events. But the massive exposure that they bring to the exhibitors is unquestionable.

The fact that the time won’t stop, makes further changes in the trade show infrastructure almost inevitable. What the evolution will bring to the table, whether it will be good or bad is remained to be seen. But one thing is for certain, the evolution of trade fairs is never going to stop.

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