The SEMA Show and PRI Shows were two of the most successful trade shows in 2021. ETTN recently assembled participants from both events to host an informative Facebook Live Chat discussion.
With ETTN Select Committee member Jonathan Mill as moderator, the panel included first-time SEMA Show exhibitor Roland Hence, FrontLane; first-time PRI Show exhibitor Sage Thomas, Donk Masker; returning SEMA Show exhibitor Jared Chavez, PROJECT X; and returning PRI Show exhibitor Scott Highland, Race Winning Brands. SEMA VP of Events Tom Gattuso joined to provide viewers with an insider perspective.
ETTN members are invited to visit the SEMA Show Facebook page to view the chat and learn about their experiences at the 2021 events, and what is in store for 2022.
"For us, we made sure that we had a target of the customers that we wanted to deal with which were all new customers, and we made sure that we worked with our outside reps as well as our sales team to reach out to everybody to make meetings happen," said Chavez, who exhibited in the new West Hall at the SEMA Show. "We actually had a customer plan for probably five years of who we wanted to see and try and set up and work with and we ended up getting every single customer that we had on that plan that came and made commitments to us. So for us it was a really successful show that boiled down to well-laid plans and executing those."
Hence, who was named winner of the 2020 SEMA Launch Pad, discussed his experience as a first-time exhibitor. "Seeing the other booths is always fantastic. Of course, you get the excitement of being at the Show, seeing all the exhibits and being able to participate, but also being able to meet folks that are doing something maybe a little similar to what you're doing or somebody that you can benefit from learning."
When asked how the 2021 PRI Show compared to past years, Highland shared, "Over the years at PRI, I have seen the show grow and grow. In 2021 we were excited to get back out and see our customers. We were really pleasantly surprised by the amount of booths that were occupied and the amount of attendance. We felt like it was almost pre-pandemic level. We were really excited and it was a great show for us."
"With PRI it was good because this was the first time ever a big-wheel car has actually been in the PRI building," added Thomas. "I've been there in 2019 but this is my first year actually exhibiting there, so just having a big-wheel donk on the premises – the reaction was crazy. It was something for people to like, they took a lot of pictures […] It was good to see everybody back and actually get in touch and see what's going on with all the new stuff that's coming out with the partners."
In additional to collecting data and follow-up information on the people you meet in-person, additional advice Chavez shared for exhibitors was "buy Chapstick and stay hydrated […] in regards to show itself, I think the biggest thing is to have your goals and your plans and make it meaningful."
2022 SEMA Show exhibitor space rental applications are now open at www.semashow.com/exhibitor.