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Off-Site Insight
The results of our 2015 Meetings and Events Survey indicate that 83 percent of exhibit managers are also tasked with planning off-site events, ranging from sales meetings and product launches to private shows and user-group conferences. By Travis Stanton
espite the time-consuming nature of planning and executing an exhibit-marketing program, many exhibit managers have a lot of unrelated items on their to-do lists. In fact, data from EXHIBITOR Magazine's 2014 Salary Survey indicates the average exhibit manager spends less than half of his or her time devoted to trade shows. So what else is demanding face-to-face marketers' attention?

According to the results of our 2015 Meetings and Events Survey, the vast majority of exhibit managers are spending at least a portion of their time planning and hosting off-site meetings or events. While most exhibit managers plan fewer than five off-site events per year, one-fourth of them plan more than 10 additional events, with average attendance figures ranging from less than 50 to more than 5,000.

Granted, some of these events are held in conjunction with trade shows, and others fall within the wheelhouse of most face-to-face marketers. However, planning corporate meetings, incentive travel, awards dinners, and user-group conferences can pose unique challenges.

For example, whereas most exhibitors have little to no say regarding where show management decides to host the exhibitions on their calendar, 73 percent of them have the added burden of finding, vetting, and recommending potential venues for off-site events. And unfortunately for exhibitors, their to-do lists are unlikely to get shorter anytime soon, as 93 percent anticipate the number of off-site meetings and events they're responsible for will remain the same or increase in the next three years.

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