Despite signs that participants’ preferences have changed, trade shows have mostly reverted to their pre-2020 structures. Exhibition companies are optimistic about a complete revival. Before you start planning for your next event, let’s look at what’s changing about the future of trade shows. 

  1. Intimate conversations are sought after 

The prediction is future trade shows will be less about showcasing products and more about facilitating conversations. Guests expect the show floor to be more networking and conversation driven, besides featuring a more intimate experience. So include a lot of “talking pockets” in your event venue to encourage connection and conversing. This can mean more networking lounge, business matching and breakout rooms. 

2. Tech-Optimization Needed 

Attendees will choose their events more carefully and demand technology-enabled experiences to make the most of their time. Whether their objective is to get in and out of town, to cover a huge show floor efficiently, or to get back to the networking scene at the hotel bar as quickly as possible, attendees want to make the most of their time at a show. Attendee satisfaction will increase as you make use of more technologies to support these goals. 

3. The smaller the better 

Big trade shows with 500 booths may be a thing of the past. Future venues may be smaller as attendees seek personal, engaging, and consultation offerings that’ll attract them to attend your event in-person. Events are also becoming more regional. 

4. Create purposeful activations 

As the world becomes more eco-conscious, it’s important that exhibitors and sponsors showcase their sustainable initiatives, with interactive and eye-catching booths with a branded experience that connects with their brand values. 

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