This Week's Herman Trend Alert

Huge Victory for Bees
and What It Means


  The Herman Trend Alert

September 4, 2002

Convention Attendance Shifting Designs

Have you noticed that there are fewer people on exhibit hall floors at conventions lately? Not surprisingly, with the big numbers of mergers and acquisitions, there's a smaller base of buyers and sellers. According to Skip Cox, President of Exhibit Surveys in Red Bank, New Jersey and Wayne Jacobs of Jacobs, Jenner & Kent in Baltimore, there's been a 30% decrease in traffic density on show floors. US companies that sent employees to an average of 4.8 events in 1995 now allow an average of only 1.6.

Due to the combination of fewer attendees and higher exhibit costs, many companies believe their return on exhibition investment has evaporated. This belief moves them to "invest" in fewer trade shows. It's an unstoppable downward spiral.

While people may spend less time in exhibit halls, they are participating in more educational sessions.

Top executives give two principal reasons for going to conferences: Networking and staying on the leading edge. The Cox and Jacobs study found that networking was the deciding factor in whether people would choose to attend a show. Savvy planners are responding with longer breaks between sessions for networking time.

Expect to see increased networking opportunities specifically designed for attendees to interact with each other when the exhibit hall is not open and no educational sessions are held. It is paradoxical that the way to take care of exhibitors is to offer attendees more time away from them. The secret will be to add more floor hours to benefit exhibitors as well. In fact, some associations have already taken the latter step.

Another interesting development is that attendees feel less compulsion to go to an event every time it is held. This fact has led to what is called "attendance churn," when companies send different attendees each year. This phenomenon results in greater difficulty attracting the highly prized "power buyer."

Some exhibitors have already chosen to put more of their limited sales and marketing dollars into private events, spending less on elaborate exhibits that have not yielded an appropriate ROI. We expect that trend to continue.

© Copyright 1998- by The Herman Group, Inc. -- reproduction for publication is encouraged, with the following attribution: From "The Herman Trend Alert," by Joyce Gioia, Strategic Business Futurist. 336-210-3547 or To sign up, visit The Herman Trend Alert is a trademark of The Herman Group, Inc."

While other web hosting companies are nickel and diming you with all kind of add-on costs, charges one low price. A fraction of the cost you will pay for domestic hosting. For more information, email You'll be surprised and pleased.

July 22 to 24 The World Future Society will host its 50th anniversary conference in Washington, DC. Last year's conference earned great acclaim and this year's promises to be even better. Held at the Washington, DC Hilton Hotel, WF2016 offers an immersive experiences where speakers, panelists, and participants alike will challenge the parameters that currently restrict decision-making. Early Bird Rates—starting at a low rate of $495 for WFS members, these rates are only good through December 13th. To register, visit this special site:

If so, The Innovation Global Network ( is your go-to spot for best practices and experts you need to help you with any aspects of creating innovation, entrepreneurship, or change. IGN is a global ecosystem that welcomes anyone who want to find or offer innovation help, expertise, tools and resources. When you visit their website, you'll find all kinds of information and resources, including networking events and webinars. Basic membership is free, so sign up today!

To read this Herman Trend Alert on the web: http://

Herman Trend Alerts are produced by the Herman Group, strategic business futurists, Certified Management Consultants, authors, and professional speakers.

New subscribers are welcome. There is no charge for this public service. The Herman Trend Alert is read by over 30,000 people in 87 countries, including other websites and printed periodicals. Do you enjoy receiving this weekly e-mail update? Contact us about our co-branded Herman Trend Alert service. Click here to sign up for the Herman Trend Alert.

Subscribe or Unsubscribe to weekly Herman Trend Alert
View this week's Herman Trend Alert
Archived Weekly Herman Trend Alerts


[ Home · About · Products · Resources · Media ]


7112 Viridian Lane
Austin, TX 78739
Voice: 336-210-3547
Toll Free in US & Canada: 800-227-3566

  © The Herman Group. All rights reserved.

Web site design by WebEditor Design Services, Inc.