A subscriber tells us her show this year was absolutely dead on the third exhibit day. (Her pattern is M conference only, T - Th exhibit). Exhibitors are pressing her to drop the third exhibit day (Th); what should she do?
Simply dropping an exhibit day can cause problems. First, the show may become perceived as less valuable (by both attendees and exhibitors). Also, exhibitors may demand a proportionate reduction in booth fee. Here is what we suggested:
Drop the third exhibit day but position it as a consolidation from four to three days (rather that reducing the exhibit from three to two days). Same overall value but packed into less time (a benefit).
Add a two hour opening reception at 4 PM on the previous conference-only day. Hold it on the show floor and promote it as a special advance preview for the conference attendees (another benefit).
But do not go to a M - W pattern. Instead, do T as conference plus reception and then W - Th for the exhibit. This allows one more day of straight time move-in (another benefit).
P.S. If you are launching a show, avoid this problem by starting off with a 2-day exhibit.