As the number of b-to-b tradeshow and event attendees continues to
decrease, companies are citing attendee quality in terms of purchase
influence and buying power as the top factor when deciding to
exhibit at an event, according to a study conducted by BPA Worldwide.

According to “Determining Exhibitor ROI At B-to-B Tradeshow Events,”
40 percent of survey respondents indicated that traffic to exhibits
decreased in 2008. A show’s past success (44 percent) was the second
factor when deciding to exhibit at events, followed by
topic/theme/content focus (41 percent).

Among smaller companies, attendees’ purchasing/buying power rated as
the most important factor when deciding to exhibit, while larger
companies (with over $100 million in total revenues) reported a show’s
past success as more important than attendees’ buying power.

When asked how important independent tradeshow audits were to
verifying the quality of tradeshow attendance, 47 percent of
respondents reported “extremely important” or “somewhat important.”
Exhibit/event managers especially (62 percent) believe audits are more
important than other titles.

The majority of respondents also believe that event organizers
should be held at least somewhat accountable for delivery of audience
in terms of quality promised (90 percent), title quality (84 percent)
and buying power of the attendees (82 percent).

BPA, in conjunction with Stein Rogan + Partners, distributed the
Web-based survey between November and December 2008 to over 5,000
contacts at companies that exhibit at tradeshows in the U.S.