Advances in technology have changed the way we do business greatly.
Now, it's even possible to attend a virtual trade show complete with continuing education, keynote speakers, exhibit booths, and networking events.
Welcome to the future
All the activities you conduct at a physical trade show are available in the virtual trade show environment. Most virtual trade shows consist of an auditorium for continuing education and training sessions; a lounge for one-to-one chats and peer-to-peer networking; an exhibit hall to visit booths, view product presentations and demonstrations, ask questions, and place orders; and a resource center for saving presentations, white papers, and e-brochures to a virtual briefcase.
Bringing the trade show environment online is an emerging trend in the industry. It is estimated that by 2015, 25% of trade shows will have a virtual component ( http://www.businessknowhow.com/marketing/virtual-tradeshow.htm).
From what the industry has seen so far, attendee engagement with the education content, exhibitors, and each other exceeds the expectations of many organizations that currently are producing virtual events. In one case study, it was found that (on average) attendees spent upward of 6 hours in their virtual conference and 8 minutes speaking to exhibitors.
With involvement like this, we expect to see the demand for virtual trade shows grow in the coming years.