Not too long ago, the main trend in trade shows was for the people running the exhibits to offer demonstrations. That was what people went to the trade shows to see. A booth did not have to be expensive or flashy. There just needed to be something to demonstrate.
With the economic slowdown, people are left wondering if they should go ahead with a trade show, or if they would be better off waiting until the economy picks back up. I think the numbers speak for themselves. In 2005, Exhibit Surveys, Inc conducted a survey on 73 different trade shows.
I have been in the trade show business for years, and one thing I have noticed recently is businesses are afraid to enter into a trade show because they are afraid of the costs. They are afraid to make the investment into a trade show because they are not sure of their ROI. There is a secret to getting a strong ROI, and that secret is to decrease the costs of running your trade show exhibit. These running costs add up to much more than the costs of the exhibit itself, and so can the savings.