Having conducted extensive surveys and one-to-one feedback among both hosted buyers and buyer-attendees following the inaugural IMEX America last fall, the IMEX Group is now set to introduce a range of new services and upgrades to enhance the trade show experience for both groups.
Last October, almost 1,000 non-hosted industry buyers – known as buyer-attendees – visited the show to do business and take advantage of the free, business-focused tradeshow floor featuring over 1,800 exhibitors from 147 countries, the extensive free education program and multiple, high-level networking opportunities and co-located events.
At the launch show, North American buyers were particularly enthusiastic in their appreciation and use of the IMEX online scheduling system as a business planning tool. This unique system allows all buyers to make their own, independent appointments with exhibitors of their choice. This year, a personalized IMEX inbox is being introduced, which will collect all exhibitor messages to buyers into a single inbox on the IMEX website. By generating just one aggregated email per day to each buyer, the intention is to help all buyers manage exhibitor marketing information, emails, and invitations to receptions and special events more systematically and effectively. This new streamlining of emails was tested at IMEX in Frankfurt this year among 50 pecent of hosted buyers and met with a positive response and a measurable increase in the number of appointments achieved in the test group. The new IMEX inbox will be available to both hosted buyers and buyer-attendees allowing both groups to manage their time more effectively at the show.
POPULAR DEMAND DRIVES INCREASE IN NETWORKING AND EDUCATION OPPORTUNITIES
In addition, several new networking receptions will be built into the 2012 show to provide more opportunities for expanding professional business networks. MPI will take the lead by introducing an early evening reception for planners at the end of Smart Monday – Powered by MPI – on October 8.
Aside from the rainmaking opportunities at the show, all of IMEX America’s 100-plus professional development and education sessions are provided free of charge to all participants.. This means that all attendees can access the full education program on Smart Monday, October 8, plus each morning’s MPI keynote and a vast choice of other seminars and workshops taking place on the show floor, the LearningCurve Zone, and the Sustainability Center. Smart Monday access also includes high-level education delivered by other partners and associations, including Site, ISES, and ACTE; plus Association Focus – a conference within a conference – for association meeting professionals and delivered by ASAE, ICCA, and PCMA. The show’s initial “schedule at a glance” for 2012 is now available online. Checking schedules and planning which sessions to attend will also be eased by further enhancements to the IMEX App and extended use of free WiFi throughout the Sands Expo to all buyers.
FREE SHUTTLE BUS SERVICE EXTENDED
Free shuttle-bus services are also being extended to buyer-attendees between their hotels, the Sands Expo and McCarran airport. In addition, preferential accommodation rates have been agreed with the show’s headquarters hotel, The Venetian®|The Palazzo®, offering bookings at US$139 with no resort fee. Airline discounts are also available with IMEX America’s Official Airline – Delta – and similarly strong deals with Sky Team and Star Alliance airlines around the world.
Commenting on the planned changes to the trade show experience for buyer-attendees, Carina Bauer, CEO of the IMEX Group, said: “Our inaugural trade show made a really strong start, and since then we have listened closely to make sure the changes we implement are well received and truly beneficial. At the end of the week, we want all visitors to feel they’ve received outstanding value and return on time and effort invested.”
Save the date for IMEX America 2012: Smart Monday – Powered by MPI – kicks off the week on October 8. The IMEX America trade show runs October 9-11 at the Sands Expo, Las Vegas, and is followed by PCMA’s Global Professionals Conference, October 11-12.
Benefits for buyer attendees: www.imexamerica.com/buyerattendee.html
Schedule At A Glance: www.imexamerica.com/eventsandseminars.html
MPI Education at IMEX America: www.imexamerica.com/mpieducation.html