Trade Show TalesBlog

Archive for August 14th, 2009

Word on the Street — August 10th thru August 14th

August 14th, 2009 5 COMMENTS
Word on the Street by Kevin Carty

Word on the Street by Kevin Carty

Social Media. . . Just a Fad? Administrative Crack Maybe . . . but It’s Clearly NOT a Fad!

OK, nobody’s looking, so you’re safe — Raise your hand if you have a Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or MySpace account. If your hand is not up, then you are either lying or you are reading this on paper because you still haven’t figured out how to turn on a computer.

While I will concede that many of these, especially MySpace and Facebook, started primarily as fads over the past few years, times have clearly changed. So much so that they are affecting other mediums as well.

Did you know that ESPN just this week banned all its on-air and print talent from talking sports on Twitter and other Social Media sites? It’s true! The thought being, if they are breaking sports news in Tweets or Facebook updates and I read them there, then why would I need to watch Sportscenter.

Personally, I have a Twitter account, a LinkedIn account and yes, a Facebook page. If you had asked me about these sites a year ago, I would have laughed and said, “Heck no!” Now, I even write a weekly blog post. And I am clearly not the only one. Let me site some facts I recently read online at

Social Media Facts

  • If Facebook were a country, it would be the world’s 4th largest between the United States and Indonesia
  • Years to reach 50 millions users:  Radio (38 Years), TV (13 Years), Internet (4 Years), iPod (3 Years). Facebook added 100 million users in less than 9 months. iPhone applications hit 1 billion in 9 months
  • % of companies using LinkedIn as a primary tool to find employees — 80%
  • There are over 200,000,000 blogs
  • 34% of bloggers post opinions about products and brands
  • 78% of consumers trust peer recommendations 
  • People care more about how their social graph ranks products and services than how Google ranks them

There are many, many more that will stagger you. When you have 4-5 minutes to spare, check out this video on YouTube:

Business Perspective

So, from a business perspective, is there value to be found in these trending numbers? I think there clearly is. In a weird way, I would suggest that we are “coming full circle” — back before traditional print, TV and radio were the main forms of corporate advertising. Social Media provides a “Word-of-Mouth” advertising that costs nothing, and is often 100% better than any paid ad on Google could ever give you in return.

Depending on your age, ask your parents, grandparents or great grandparents about Word-of-Mouth. I think you will find that Word-of-Mouth was the most powerful form of advertising then, and it is becoming the dominate form now.

I review LinkedIn several times a day. I do not contribute as much as I would like to, but I read posts all day long. I could argue that I learn more there than I do in a three-day stint on the show floor at EXHIBITOR Show. Not to imply that tradeshows have lost their relevance. They have not! People still want to go, touch, feel, and learn.  However, LinkedIn provides controlled information from the standpoint that I am in control of what I read and learn.

I do think there are inherent dangers involved of course. Social Media can easily become a time and human resources black hole for a company. The Social Media Addiction is a very real thing. Many companies have banned or blocked virtually all Social Networking sites from their internal networks. And I think for good reason. While I see the value on many levels, I am not sure that each job description really needs to have access to such sites.

So, I know many of you have your own Social Media accounts, blogs, and sites. How have they impacted how you do business? Have they impacted how you do business? Do you see them as valuable business tools?

Please comment and let me know.

Have a great and restful weekend.

Be Well!

–Kevin Carty

What You Should Know about Exhibit Marketing

August 14th, 2009 2 COMMENTS

Visionary Designs VK-5002 Trade Show Island Exhibit

  • Exhibit marketing is more than just selling from a booth space
  • Trade shows allow companies to showcase their achievements, build their business, and maintain their competitive edge
  • You can learn to be an exhibit marketing guru. Become certified
  • Understand and track your ROI. Creating a well-defined budget is the best method to track and manage your total investment in a particular show
  • If you need help, rely on your local exhibit consultant or contract with an exhibit consulting firm

What is Exhibit Marketing?

Exhibit marketing is all about marketing your products or services to buyers at expositions, conferences, and trade shows. A successful exhibit marketing program will be rewarded with increased revenues, referrals, and industry networking. The goal is to understand how exhibit marketing differs from the other types of marketing.  

Exhibit marketing is more than just selling from a booth space. For many industries, it’s about bringing people and companies together to promote accomplishments, stimulate thought, share knowledge, build relationships, spur the competitive spirit, and reward entrepreneurial efforts. Exhibit marketing not only introduces buyers to sellers, but also fuels the competitive spirit by filling a hall with competitors, partners, and suppliers, each with goals and dreams of success. Trade shows allow companies to showcase their achievements, build their business, and maintain their competitive edge.