Past to Present: Iconic Trade Shows in History

March 9th

Not all trade shows are created equal. Some wilt like flowers within a few hours, and others generate record number crowds and sales. A review of trade shows in history shows us that, in most cases, the latter experience is due to superb marketing efforts on behalf of the promoters and participants, as well as stunning trade show exhibits.

1851 Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of all Nations. This event was held in London inside a crystal palace. In an era when few commoners had glass windows or doors, a crystal palace was draw all by itself. Throw in the fact that the event was hosted by royalty (Queen Victoria’s consort, Prince Albert), and featured technological innovations that were previously unheard of, and it’s easy to see why exhibits were such a hit. It is considered by many to be the first World’s Fair.

1905 Lewis and Clark Centennial American Pacific Exposition. This event was planned and hosted by the city of Portland, Oregon. While the event honored the 100-year anniversary of Lewis and Clark’s arrival in Portland at the end of their legendary expedition, the ultimate goal was to promote economic growth. There were exhibits from 20+ nations and approximately 1.6 million people made their way to the exposition during its four month run. Portland’s population grew by almost 68 percent within five years of the event.

October 2005 A+A International Trade Fair for Occupational Safety and Health at Work. This trade show drew record numbers to Dusseldorf, Germany. There were 54,350 attendees; nearly 1400 exhibitors and 57 nations were represented. There were a significant increase in attendees from both the U.S. and Asia. In addition to the attractive setting, exhibitors promoted innovative and ergonomic products to make the workplace more comfortable and safe.

2011 Inaugural IMEX America Tradeshow. Exit interviews from this four-day event, taking place at the Las Vegas Sands Expo and Convention Center, revealed the event generated a whopping $2.8 billion in business for both global and U.S.-based meetings, events, and incentive-travel industries. IMEX events continue to be some of the most well-attended trade shows on the circuit.

Taking a look at which trade shows in history have drawn the largest crowds can serve as inspiration as you engineer trade show booths, events, and meetings that draw record attendees, leads, and sales for your company.

Eventrio has the technology and techniques to make your trade show experiences easy. Contact us to learn more.

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