The Why of Trade Shows

Find out what's in it for attendees and exhibitors. 


Every so often someone tells me they don’t go to trade shows, either as an attendee or an exhibitor, because they don’t have the time. My response to those people is that attending a trade show is time well spent. It’s always worth it, both as an attendee and as an exhibitor. From exhibiting and attending shows myself, I have some insight into the draws. So, if you haven’t been to a trade show yet, or haven’t been to one recently, here is my short pitch for why you should go.


As an attendee, a trade show is a great place to connect, both with fellow producers and the suppliers you’re interested in doing business with when you return to your shop. Trade shows will almost always have a full schedule of seminars and learning opportunities. It’s a place where you can learn more about familiar and unfamiliar disciplines. It’s also a place to take your business skills to the next level, whether it’s sales and marketing, managing social media, or figuring out how to communicate your pricing.


As an exhibitor, there is no better place to connect with new and current customers. Depending on the show, you may be able to sell products and equipment on the show floor, which has the potential for the dispersal of a large amount of inventory within a short timeframe. A trade show is also a great way to establish a presence in a geographical area where you may not have a facility. Industry media, as well as industry veterans, are also ready to connect with exhibitors on the latest, which can help get the word out about your offerings.

Attending a trade show is worth the time, money, and efforts no matter your position in the industry. Put together a list of shows you want to attend or exhibit at, and then compare the costs with what’s being offered. The aim is to find a show that allows you to achieve your goals without breaking the bank.

Check out 5 Trade Show Tips for Decorators to get the most of your experience.

Visit EnMart at THE NBM SHOW Meadowlands in July.


Kristine Shreve

Kristine is the founder and CEO of Kristine Shreve Consulting which offers writing, marketing and business development services. Kristine is also the creator and host of the Business + Women podcast, where the discussion centers around being a woman business owner. She blogs on her webiste, as well as and On Facebook, Kristine is the founder of the Women in Garment Decoration Facebook group. Kristine was the director of marketing for Ensign Emblem and EnMart from 2006 to April 2020.

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