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Many professionals in the tradeshow industry are incorporating online interaction into their personal educational and networking commitments.

The weekly Twitter chat operating on the hashtag #ExpoChat is a resource for those working in expositions, such as exhibitors, corporate marketers, trade and association show organizers, suppliers, content writers and facilities personnel.

“ExpoChat is a gathering place for everyone involved in tradeshows and expos to exchange best practices and brainstorm new ideas together. It’s a true community where all participants leave their egos and titles at the door,” said Traci Browne, co-founder, ExpoChat and Red Cedar Marketing.

Other co-founders include Stephanie Selesnick of International Trade Information Inc. and Dana Freker Doody of The Expo Group.

Community response to ExpoChat since it began 18 months ago has been positive and productive. Those involved have done business with others they met via the chat; rookie exhibit managers have found mentors and others have found job opportunities.

“It was important to us when we created ExpoChat to embolden a group of people networking online to hear and voice their opinions about issues specifically affecting people and companies working inside that tradeshow box,” said Freker Doody. “Our struggles and successes are different from other event professionals, and our community often is fragmented by separate association memberships. ExpoChat has a ‘Love All, Serve All’ mentality.”

Regular participants in #ExpoChat include a rookie exhibitor who recently completed her first tradeshow exhibit experience alongside a few professionals who have been at it for 30 years. They share passion for their work and embrace new technology tools such as Twitter to open new worlds.

“We meet online every Wednesday, and we welcome new participants!” said Selesnick. “Schedule some time to check out our chats at 3 p.m. Eastern/Noon Pacific. We post topics, often submitted by participants and centered on real-world solutions on our blog at expochat.wordpress.com.”

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