Michael Hart posts some interesting audience response system results from the opening session at TS2 earlier this week. He says:
- Some 34 percent of the audience said they had already seen the rising cost of airline tickets and the elimination of flights have an impact on their exhibiting programs. Another 43 percent said they were still OK, but were watching the situation closely. Only 12 percent said they weren’t worried.
He also relates that almost 60 percent of the anxious TS2 exhibitors said they were planning to scale back on trade shows if travel costs continue to rise, and 11 percent would quit exhibiting. Sobering numbers, to be sure, but I agree with Michael that it's not doing anyone a favor to try to sweep this kind of information under the rug, to put our fingers in our ears and yell, "la la la, I can't hear you." It may not be pretty, but it is what it is, and smart trade show folks are preparing now for potentially tougher times to come (while of course still hoping for the best, or at least better).