At the close of ASD Marketweek, a destination wholesale buying event owned and operated by Emerald Expositions, final numbers show that there was a 14 percent growth in buyer attendance over last year, with VIP attendance up 23 percent throughout this four-day show. Held Aug. 2-5 at Las Vegas Convention Center, the unprecedented increase in attendees in an established show of this size can be attributed to a number of different strategic marketing and internal restructuring initiatives.
“We substantially enhanced our marketing budget this year to invest in a rebranding campaign, increase outreach campaigns including print and digital media buys, expanded engagement across all social media platforms, expanded our VIP buyer program, and launched a dedicated blog intended to keep buyers engaged throughout the year by continuously focusing on highlighting ASD Marketweek vendors,” explained ASD Merchandise and Sourcing Group EVP Karalynn Sprouse. “Additionally, we tripled our internal Buyer Acquisition team dedicated to more regions across the United States and around the globe.”
In addition to expanded efforts in getting buyers through the doors, the show also took steps to ensure that the buyers’ experience at the show was valuable and productive with the launch of a dedicated mobile app, easily facilitated the discovery of new categories and new vendors. Additionally, the Source Direct program afforded both buyers and attendees the opportunity to attend nearly 100 sessions presented by trusted industry experts, creating an important added value for the show.
While maintaining its loyal base of returning buyers, ASD Marketweek also saw a significant increase in first time attendees.
“We’ve been attending shows for 32 years but this is the first time we’ve been to ASD,” noted Curt Lambrecht, part of the Palmer Buying Group and owner of Lambrecht’s Gifts, in New Ulm, Minn. “I like it here, I find that ASD Marketweek is cheaper, but deeper.”
According to TSE Gold 100 list, ASD Marktweek is the 15th largest show in the U.S.
For more information, contact Michelle Orman at 646-302-5521 or Michelle@LastWordComm.com