It’s the end of 2013. This is my last blog of 2013. YAY!
Writing a blog every week is tough. Coming up with new content can be a real pain. However, given that the exhibition industry is a pretty dynamic one (something is ALWAYS going on), the weeks I’ve been stumped have been (thankfully) few. Special thanks to friends on Facebook who were always helpful on suggesting topics!
Since there’s less than two weeks left in the year and IAEE is now over, I feel pretty secure in listing my top favorite things that happened in 2013. I also have some predictions for 2014.
My favorite things about 2013:
1. The big move to Las Vegas. Sure, it’s personal, but it was HUGE! (I love it here, by the way.)
2. The international session at the SISO CEO Summit in Kiawah Island, S.C., led by Simon Kimble of Clarion Events. It was one of the best and funniest educational sessions ever. (I’d share more, but Lew Shomer will kill me, so let’s just say it involved a giant map of the world, a broomstick as a pointer, Marco Giberti from Reed Exhibitions Latin America and his unique way of sharing information.)
3. Michael Hart as my editor for ExpoWeb. Trust me. He’s awesome. (I am so NOT brown-nosing by the way—he’s just that good.)
4. Sharing knowledge and ideas with peers through blogs, #expochat (tweetchat weekly on Wednesdays, noon pacific time), many webinars and speaking opportunities. Special thanks go to UFI for the opportunity to present December’s webinar on the U.S. exhibition market.
5. Seeing tons of friends and colleagues at IAEE in Houston. And last week’s blog. I thought it was funny. Oh, and you—my readers!
My predictions for 2014:
1. The globalization trend will continue. More and more U.S.-based shows will look outside the country for exhibitors and visitors—particularly those in mature markets.
2. MIST will continue to solidify its positions as the new BRIC. Mexico, Indonesia, South Korea (or South Africa) and Turkey are the countries to watch. We will see it with the numbers of acquisitions and launches.
3. Southeast Asian countries, including Singapore and Thailand, will also continue to be big growth areas.
4. India will still not have a proper convention center built. (The reason it’s not part of MIST!)
5. The UFI Congress in Colombia will be outstanding. Many emeralds will be bought. (Not the company formerly known as Nielsen, but the actual jewels—think “Romancing the Stone.”)
5a. The SISO CEO Summit in Las Vegas and IAEE in L.A. will also rock.
6. Naysayers and pundits will say that CES International is on its way out and how much it’s gone “downhill”—even though it’s going to break all records…again.
7. I’ll still covet many cars at The SEMA Show. And want to test drive big construction vehicles at CONEXPO-CON/AGG.
8. Collocations will continue to grow, adding value to attendees.
9. Congress will still be screwed up.
10. WeChat will overtake Facebook and YouTube as the most popular global social media and communication platform. (Thanks for the heads up, Jo-Anne Kelleway!)
Happy Holidays and see you next year!
Stephanie S. Selesnick is president of International Trade Information, a longtime global exhibition industry specialist helping U.S show organizers increase international participation in their exhibitions and a well-known speaker and trainer. Follow her on Twitter at @stephselesnick.