First Timers: What to expect from InfoComm 2018
InfoComm is one of the largest professional audiovisual trade shows in the United States, and can be overwhelming for first timers. With hundreds of manufacturers, thousands of attendees, and only three days to take it all in, you want to make sure you’re getting the best bang for your buck. After attending InfoComm this year, here are our tips for making your first experience at InfoComm a smooth one:
Planning for InfoComm:
– One of the things InfoComm does well, is providing a first timer’s orientation and tour. If you’ve never been to the show before, it tends to be a little overwhelming the first time. For their orientation, they usually let you in 30 minutes early and give you a guided tour of portions of the show floor just to give you some bearings.
– Keep up on the industry emails that come out and read your trade magazines. This will give you a general idea of what products will be released and in turn, will allow you to do a preliminary assessment to determine several of the best of breed products.
– Schedule appointments with specific vendors at the exhibit that you would like to learn more about their products. There are so many educational booths that are happy to walk you through each product but use your time wisely as you will not be able to make every appointment.
-WEAR COMFORTABLE SHOES! You’re going to spend a lot of time on your feet. There are very few places to sit down, so be prepared to be up and walking for three or four days in a row with very little time to rest. Comfortable shoes, comfortable clothing, and make sure you’re taking care of yourself – stay hydrated.
Walking InfoComm Show Floor:
–When it comes to networking and meeting new people, it is often easy to rely on false positives to get through uncomfortable moments, especially if you are nervous and large crowds are overwhelming. BE YOURSELF. The most important trait that you can bring to anything in life, business or personal, is yourself.
–Everyone has a particular way of walking the floor – I tend to breeze through very quickly at the beginning and make lots of notes about things I want to come back to, and then circle back and spend more in-depth time at some of the booths. Once you get into the cycle you’ll start to get emails from the vendors and rep firms asking you to set up booth tours. Those can be fabulous, especially when people are coming out with exciting new equipment.
–A number of vendors have demo rooms – especially those displaying audio, but they also have vendor videos and a number of other items to show off. The audio demo rooms are typically open to all. Some of the other demo rooms you may need to do an NDA (non-disclosure agreement) or have an established relationship with the vendor to get into the room. If you’re a first timer you can do the whole show and not realize that there are other rooms.
As a first timer, it is important to try and utilize your time wisely. Making scheduled appointments with different exhibitors can be extremely helpful as each one is knowledgeable and have attended numerous shows. Infocomm is a great way to meet all the incredible people with the AV industry. Learning, educating others, playing around with all the fun gadgets, meeting intelligent peers from all around the world, and the ability to gain more experience, are just a few of the opportunities that await you at InfoComm. We know that we cannot wait until the next one in 2020 back in Vegas, but now that you know the ropes, are you ready?