Our “Post-Trade-Show” World: Reinventing how media buyers build relationships

Until recently, media vendors and buyers had an unbeatable relationship-building tool: the trade show. Now it’s hard to tell how long we’ll wait before we get to participate in mass gatherings again.

But though trade shows are on pause, media vendors and buyers still need to build relationships — perhaps now more than ever. So how are businesses connecting in a post-trade-show world to fill the vacuum created by event cancellations throughout the globe?

Let’s start by taking a look at exactly why trade shows were so impactful in the first place…

Why trade shows were integral to the discovery of new media offerings and partnership building

Due to the global crisis, the event industry as a whole has taken a direct massive hit to the tune of at least $1.1 billion. But the indirect impact is likely just as big (if not bigger), and marketers who once relied on event marketing for demand generation are now scrambling to pivot their strategies.

Those marketers are no small group. Before events shut down, 41% of B2B marketers had planned to increase their 2020 event budgets. And more than half of B2B marketers were already spending 21%+ of their budgets on events.

We can attribute the confidence in trade show ROI to at least three things:

  1. Trade shows leveled the playing field. If you’re a media vendor, exhibiting at a trade show meant equal access to media buyers — no matter how big a banner the largest players bought, you couldn’t be drowned out.
  2. Trade shows were the place to learn about emerging technology and offers. What’s the best way to ensure trade show ROI? Bring your best offer, your best demo, your most cutting-edge tech to the show. For media buyers this meant unprecedented exposure to emerging media — from DOOH, to ConnectedTV and Digital Audio.
  3. Trade shows created the perfect environment to build relationships. Any salesperson will tell you: we buy from people we know, like, and trust. Trade shows were the staple of relationship and trust-building for most us in B2B. Few things can outcompete a face-to-face interaction when it comes to getting to know someone. 

Today, trade shows are on hold for the foreseeable future. So how are media buyers and vendors forging new connections?

How a media discovery platform fills the vacuum created by cancelled trade shows

Now more than ever, media buyers are looking for ways to stretch their media budgets while adapting to constantly changing consumer behavior. Media vendors, on the other hand, are perfectly positioned to tailor their inventory in response to this “new normal”.

In other words, there is no better time to seek out new connections. But how?

Here at BriefBid, we’ve been seeing a huge surge of inquiries from both vendors and buyers. And while a media vendor discovery platform won’t replace trade shows, during a time of social distancing it can help achieve similar results to what we used to get from trade shows. How, exactly?

  1. A media discovery platform gives every vendor an equal opportunity by applying data-driven vetting. For vendors, this gives the ability to compete based on the fit and quality of their inventory, as opposed to the size of the sales team. Whereas for media buyers, it creates more choices while looking for the right fit. 
  2.  A media discovery platform uses a relevance algorithm to match vendors with buyers. This means media buyers can spend more time learning about different solutions and comparing them in more depth, rather than devoting resources to assessing every individual vendor on a case-by-case basis. 
  3. A media discovery platform provides a streamlined RFP process and leads to more meaningful conversations. The best media vendor and buyer relationships ultimately come down to ROI. A media discovery platform gets rid of bottlenecks to building relationships by streamlining the RFP process. In turn, faster decision-making means a shorter path to ROI. 

Finding out if a media discovery platform is right for you

Whether we’ll have to practice social distancing for just a few more months or much longer, many more media vendors and buyers will be exposed to new collaboration tools.

BriefBid has been connecting media buyers and vendors since 2018. Want to learn how we can help you find the perfect media partners?

If you’re a media buyer: claim access to the platform to see how BriefBid automates your vendor vetting process.

And if you’re a media vendor: apply to our vendor list to add efficiency to your sales cycle and help fill the current trade show vacuum.

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