Digitalization and the Exhibition Industry

Posted by

Barry Siskind

UFI’s Community Manager

If you have been questioning what digitization means to the exhibition industry, you will have an excellent chance to learn more from an expert at the upcoming UFI Open Seminar in Europe to be held in Turkey, June 15-17. Dr. Holger Feist, Chief Strategy Officer, Messe Muenchen International, will deliver an address titled, Media in Transition: Five Insights for Trade Shows.

I asked him a few questions to give you a sample of the insights he will be sharing with the audience.


How will the change to digitalization impact the exhibition business?


First and foremost, digitization is a huge opportunity. It enables an even better and more targeted communication with our customers. It helps us in creating new services around our trade shows. And perhaps most importantly, it extends the traditional on-site platform of exchange between exhibitors and visitors beyond the original location and time. Digitalization thus paves the way for a number of new business models.


What are some of the steps organisers should take to face these changes?


To capitalize on the digital opportunity, organisers first need to fully understand the importance of data. Managing data properly, analysing data thoroughly, using data responsibly are key prerequisites for success in a digital world. Second, organisers need to fully understand exhibitor needs and the visitors’ journey, on site and off site. Organisers are then in a position to design more targeted communication and services to create highly valuable, individual matches.

If you haven’t already registered for the Open Seminar, there is still time. For more information click here:

By | 2018-01-16T13:23:21+00:00 June 1st, 2015|All|0 Comments

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  1. Dr. Urs Seiler June 4, 2015 at 6:14 am - Reply

    Der falsche Mythos von der virtuellen Messe (als ob es so etwas gäbe) hat sich schon lange erschöpft und heute ins Gegenteil verkehrt. Je stärker der Trend zur Digitalisierung wird, desto stärker wächst der Bedarf, sich real auszutauschen. Auf der Messe und auf Live Events. Der Zukunftsforscher Gerd Leonhard hat das so gesagt: Algorithmen bilden keine Beziehungen, sie imitieren sie nur.
    Das gesagt: Messen selber werden in den nächsten Jahren, ganz gleich wie andere Branchen, eine digitale Transformation erleben. Dadurch werden sie besser, Aussteller und Besucher erfolgreicher. An 365 Tagen im Jahr. Das Schlüsselwort heisst digitaler Marktplatz 365.

  2. Angela_Herberholz June 5, 2015 at 7:56 am - Reply

    Thank you Dr. Seiler for additionally providing us with your comment in English:

    “The wrong myth of the virtual trade fair (as if such a thing existed) has long been unmasked and we now know that the opposite is true: The more vital the trend towards digitazation the more urgent the need to meet in real life becomes. At exhibitions, trade shows and live events. The futurist Gerd Leonhard has described this with the following words: Algorithms are not real relationships, they only imitate them. Having said this, trade fairs and live events will in the next years, equal to all industries, see a digital transformation. It will improve trade fairs and create better relationships for exhibitors, buyers and show organisers and create more sales. On 365 days of the year. The keyword is the digital marketplace 365.”

  3. Dr. Urs Seiler June 15, 2015 at 8:43 am - Reply

    Auma president Walter Mennekes says encountering real people and real products (note: instead of algorithms) was a reason for the superiority of fairs against online media. How true. Neurology has taught us, that the rational human being is a fiction. People like to meet people and create trust. This is why trade fairs in Germany have grown further in all relevant figures such as exhibitors, visitors and rented space in 2014 and will continue to do so in 2015. Download Auma’s brand new «Bilanz» in German language (english translation to follow later in the year):

  4. Kshitiz Thakur June 29, 2015 at 4:08 pm - Reply

    Digitization is becoming more and more important and widespread now days in exhibitions and conferences. It is such a wonderful thing to make your event or parts of it, to millions of people who are or were not there, and communicate with them.

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