Tradeshows Reach Same People as Trademags, Btw

Tradeshows were thought to be dead circa 2002 yet nobody told the thousands of manufacturers and distributors that continued to invest in exhibit space. In fact, tradeshow attendance had been impressively strong for years before the recent sudden decline. But it has recovered impressively to a point. Yet it struck me as rather odd that some of the industrial marketing professionals who make sure to budget handsomely to exhibit at a few key tradeshows every year bristle at the idea of advertising in the key trade magazines that reach the exact same people they’re trying to reach at the tradeshows.

Yes, it’s the exact, same people. Today, many tradeshows and trade magazines are owned by the same companies. For example:

Pack Expo = PMMI = Packaging World, Pro Food World
Design2Part/Job Shop Shows = Job Shop Company = Design2Part Magazine
Powder Show = Informa = Powder/Bulk Solids

Many circulation managers use tradeshows to find new subscribers for their magazines. Many show organizers use trade media to find new attendees for their events and expos. Since they both reach the exact same people, does it really make any sense to invest in a booth, displays, literature, staffing, and travel without using the corresponding trade magazine to ensure the tradeshow investment delivers a solid return? It’s well documented that exhibitors who launch pre-show advertising campaigns attract more leads than exhibitors who sit back and wait for leads to show up. Plus, exhibitors typically enjoy discounts on advertising and advertisers typically enjoy discounts on exhibit space. 

Lastly, studies demonstrate that reaching prospects via multiple channels at the same time, such as via tradeshows, online advertising, print advertising, email marketing, social media, and direct mail is more effective at sparking response and promoting message retention than by using any single channel alone. 

For guidance on how to use the trade media to support your tradeshow investment, call epr at 908.479.4231 or

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Paul Entin’s Marketing In Real Life explores every facet of marketing from advertising, PR and lead generation to content marketing, direct response and the latest in marketing automation – and more. Paul Entin’s Marketing In Real Life provides real-life insight into the relationship among sales, marketing, and customer service – and the customer – plus quick commentary from epr founder, Paul Entin.