How to make the most of your first trade show experience
Attending an event for the first time can be overwhelming. There are thousands of event planners, exhibitors and attendees on the trade show floor. Follow our top tips to ensure you have the best possible IMEX experience as a first time attendee.
Plan your schedule before you land
This seems like a given, especially for those who organize events for a living. IMEX is different. There are many educational sessions and hundreds of stand activities occurring each day.
If you are a hosted buyer, plan your appointments around education sessions. IMEX makes sure there is enough time to meet your buyer obligations and still benefit from education and networking. That’s why there are so many activities and opportunities at the same time.
Map your day using the floor plan
Before the show begins each day, find the location of your appointments and top activity choices on the show floor map. While rushing for a meeting, I’ve turned in circles trying to find the correct aisle on the show floor.
The amount of activity creates a vortex that can suck you in. From stands offering complimentary champagne and canapés, to country representatives dancing around in native dress, a hubbub ensues that is really exhilarating. By making sure you know the location of meetings in advance, you can still enjoy the festivities along the way (and no one cares if you carry your champagne around the show floor).
Eat, hydrate, rest, repeat
IMEX is a four-day marathon. You have to schedule a lunch break likes it’s a required appointment. Although the main show floor can be chaotic, there are areas that offer a quiet getaway to sit, eat, drink and think.