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Marketing events directly apply to tradeshows

Chicago is a frequent host for events and seminars directed to marketing and the international scene. Although we focus on tradeshows, much can be gained by attending marketing-related events that can indirectly apply to convention planning.



Two recent events of interest include the Tower Awards conducted by the Business Marketing Association (BMA) of Chicago and a seminar presented by the Niagra Foundation.

The Chicago chapter of the BMA is the largest chapter of the in the U.S. It consists of 450 business marketing professionals from the Chicago area. The focus of BMA is to bring its members together in a face-to-face setting to hear from the top business-to-business marketing thinkers in the industry. BMA meets monthly for luncheon seminars where these top marketing experts speak on strategies they have employed to increase their market reach and awareness.

One of the more recent speakers has been Philip Kotler, author and distinguished professor at Northwestern Kellogg Graduate School of Management. Other speakers have included marketing directors from Aon, Schneider Electric and OfficeMax. These industry professionals have all shared personal strategies for increased growth and awareness of their brand.

Each year, BMA conducts a competition program called the Tower Awards. The winners are acknowledged in numerous categories including best ad campaigns, best website designs and a category for the best tradeshow marketing. BMA Chicago also created an award called the Rising Star Award that acknowledges the best contributions from an up and comer working to improve business-to-business marketing.

This year’s Rising Star Award winner was Michelle Fox from Slack & Company.

I really like this focus of cheering on the up-and-comers. Bravo to BMA Chicago!

The other event I recently attended was a seminar given by the honorable Yang Guoqiang, Consul General of China, presented by the Niagra Foundation.

His speech focused on the trade relations between China and the U.S. and he expressed particular interest in Chicago as a desired business location for the exchange of trade between our countries.

Guoqiang went on to point out three issues that China needs to address.

1. Raise the standard of living for the common worker, particularly in the Midwest and Western part of China. With this, China can
then increase its demand for domestic consumption as well as increasing import demands for meat, grain and other food products to sustain its growing economy.

2. Greater awareness and respect for natural resources including air, water, forests, oil, minerals, etc.

3. Greater investment from GNP in technology and education.

Many of these growth issues can be jumpstarted through tradeshow events to stimulate trade with U.S. trade partners.

The Niagara Foundation envisions a community in which people from all walks of life interact with each other and cooperate to serve their communities, thereby strengthening civil society and promoting the development of human values. In a world where even the farthest point is within an arm’s reach, it is impossible to live anywhere without experiencing diversity. In order for everyone to live peacefully, it is important for individuals to rise above differences that drive us apart or against each other.

This year, the Exhibit Designers and Producers Association’s Annual ACCESS meeting will focus on conducting tradeshows in China. Plan to take part and learn from the Chinese tradeshow suppliers who plan to attend. The meeting will take place from Nov. 30 – Dec. 2 in Las Vegas.

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