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The Future of AV Tradeshows in 2022

We are entering Year 3 of the coronavirus pandemic. A pandemic that has shifted how industries conduct business and how people enter public spaces. As a new year is upon us, tradeshows are ready to “get back to normal” whatever it looks like. Last week, it was announced ISE will be postponed for three months amid growing concerns about the latest variant of COVID-19.

Managing Director of ISE Mike Blackman surveyed the exhibitors and their feelings on traveling and based the decision on that. “Having this discussion with the exhibitors they said ‘We really want ISE. We really want to be a part of it. We’d like to put it in a time where people have more confidence in travel.’”

So what does this mean for exhibitors and companies who have made plans to attend ISE? What do visitors think of the change? On the latest episode of AVWeek, Steve Greenblatt, owner of Control Concepts, explains moving the event gives attendees ease of mind.

“As an attendee, it makes life a little easier because it was certainly a concern to attend because the fact you can’t really control your condition and not being able to get on a plane to get home was a big fear,” said Greenblatt.

The majority of the exhibitors Blackman talked with felt more comfortable traveling later on in the year. With this sentiment, leaders in the industry are figuring out how tradeshows will advance in this new normal. Will we see the rise in regional shows, hybrid events, or reduced attendance? One thing is for certain: tradeshows are still of huge importance to the AV community.

“Events have a key place in the marketing armory…I don’t think we are going back to anything I think we are moving forward and I think we are going to see a period of time of all sorts of experiments. Some of them will be successful and some of them are going to fail. I think at the core of it, people being with people face to face that continues to demonstrate it has value,” said AVIXA CEO David Labuskes.

Check out our latest episode of AVWeek to hear the full interview of Mike Blackman as well as what the rest of our panel has to say on the future of tradeshows. You can watch our exclusive interview with David Labuskes on the topic as well.


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