In This Article
    Add a header to begin generating the table of contents

    Trade shows: What’s the real ROI?

    On the way home from the Remodeling Show and Deck Expo earlier this month, I found myself wondering if trade shows still matter. Let’s face it: Trade shows are expensive.

    • You build booths
    • Create collateral
    • Give away tchotchkes
    • Travel
    • Entertain clients

    But the trade show budget spreadsheet doesn’t tell the whole story.

    Trade shows are a rare opportunity for marketers to talk first-hand with customers – those actually using your product or service. It’s also a chance to meet in-person with your sales team and talk face-to-face about their stumbling blocks and opportunities:

    • What keeps your clients up at night?
    • Does your three-step installation process matter to clients?
    • Does the sales team really need new collateral?
    • What messages resonate with prospects?

    Sometimes these responses are hard to hear. But they’re often the reality check we need to show where we should really spend our 40+ hours each week.

    ERM clients attend trade shows worldwide. And most would likely put their trade show ROI on the high side.


    They understand the value of candid customer feedback, seeing the sales process up close and learning about new products.

    The real trade show ROI is the stuff that never makes it on the budget spreadsheet. It’s intangible and hard to assign a number.

    It’s the knowledge you gain, the people you meet and the qualitative learnings that shape how your business moves forward.

    About The Author

    Elton Mayfield

    Elton's career spans media, production, digital and building industry expertise. His diverse experience makes him nimble, innovative, and curious – always pushing the envelope to create extraordinary work that delivers real results for our clients.

    Leave a Comment

    Recent Posts

    Stay In-the-Know with Our Quarterly Publication, The Channel.

    ER_Logo_Horizontal_WHITE copy

    We Provide a Holistic Approach for Your B2B Marketing Needs.


    Build With Us

    Let's get together to talk about your goals, story and how we can help your bring to life real results.

    Scroll to Top