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BizReport : Trends & Ideas archives : June 03, 2009

Study: Exhibition industry embraces digital media

A study from The Center for Exhibition Industry Research (CEIR) has found that over half of corporate exhibitors and exhibition management professionals consider digital marketing to be a vital or lead tactic in the execution of live events.

by Helen Leggatt

ceir logo.jpgThe CEIR, in collaboration with marketing agency George P. Johnson, found that digital media is becoming crucial to the development, promotion and running of a live event. This is illustrated by the finding that 40% of respondents believe digital media to be a "vital" component and 17% consider it a "lead tactic".

Email was the most-used digital media utilized by exhibition production teams (95%) and corporate brand marketers (87%).

Webinars were by far the most popular virtual events being used by exhibitors and exhibition planners alike, with 81% citing it as the most common event type used. Seventy-one percent of respondents use virtual media to communicate with distant customers or to manage workforces scattered around different geographic locations.

Doug Ducate, president of the CEIR, likened the nature of exhibitions to digital marketing channels saying there were both "rooted in communities of interest, dialog, relationships, interactivity and highly personalized experiences".

"What's more," he added, "each channel eliminates the inherent weakness of the other: digital expands the reach of the live experience while events facilitate the face-to-face contact critical to forging real relationships."

Tags: brand marketers, digital marketing, digital media, exhibition industry, virtual media

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