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Trade Shows: Analog Marketing in a Digital World

Trade Shows: Analog Marketing in a Digital World
In mid-June we returned from the largest trade show in our industry, the National Apartment Association Education Conference & Exposition. This show represented months of prep, thousands of man-hours, and hundreds of thousands of dollars investment. I really do love planning, promoting and attending these events, but as I decompressed from the show I wondered if the return could possibly be worth all that investment. The fun part of my trade show job as a marketer is now over. Now comes the hard part— proving out the investment. Trade show ROI is notoriously difficult to quantify. Piecing together the right metrics and measurement strategies can sometimes take months to accomplish, but if you know what you are looking for it can be possible to prove trade show effectiveness. The first thing that I want to determine is if trade shows are even worth our time. Currently 89% of marketers say that trade shows hold some level of importance and value to their organization, but only 31% say that they are vital1. In fact 40 percent of companies are cutting back on big shows in favor of more targeted gatherings, and 44 percent are choosing to host their own events such as the 2nd Annual Property Solutions Summit (sorry I couldn’t help myself). So, is the trade show world slowly dying like it showed a few years ago? Actually the opposite is true. According to the Center for Exhibition Industry Research2 the trade show industry has grown consecutively over the last nine quarters and is projected to con......
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The Intangibles Of Conference Education Sessions

Every year, people have to make the decision on whether to attend NAA's Education Conference, and who in their organizations they bring along with them.  One of the biggest benefits are the education sessions, which brings together the brightest minds to share absolutely fantastic information.  And it occurred to me today that some people may not realize the related, but maybe not obvious, benefit to these sessions, which adds a whole other level of value. So when we think about each education session, we think something along the lines of, "Donald Davidoff is one of the smartest people I know, so everything that he says will be absolutely gold".  Or, "Bill Szczytko brings such great actionable ideas in such a fun and relatable way."  Or, "Jackie Ramstedt is so engaging that I'm sucked into her world, able to see property management from a completely different perspective." *  But even more than being a great source of information, these great speakers also serve as a muse.  Each time I sit through a session, not only do I get their great nuggets of wisdom, but inevitably I hear something that strikes a chord on a completely different topic.  Suddenly, I'm furiously writing down notes that have nothing to do with the session at hand, but at the same time, was triggered directly from it. It's possible that I may have come to these epiphanies on my own, but I don't think so.  The education sessions got me into a certain mode, and hearing......
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5 Things to Do While You’re in Denver for NAA

5 Things to Do While You’re in Denver for NAA
Headed to Denver for the National Apartment Association (NAA) Education Conference and Exposition? Not only is the conference sure to be great, but Denver is also a fun city filled with lots of things to do. We know you’ll be busy taking in great education sessions and networking with fellow multifamily professionals, so consider extending your trip to explore what the Mile High City has to offer! Shop ‘til you drop. Grab some souvenirs (and a bite to eat) at the 16th Street Mall, a mile-long shopping and eating hot spot right in the heart of Denver that boasts over 300 store and more than 50 restaurants and cafes. Don’t feel like walking? No problem. There’s a free shuttle service that pics up riders at each intersection of the mall. Eat (and drink) local. With hundreds of restaurants to choose from, there are plenty of options to satisfy even the pickiest palate. And don’t forget to pair that delicious meal with a local microbrew, like something from Breckenridge Brewery, Denver Beer Co. or Strange Brewing Company (just to name a few). Get some fresh air. Denver is known for having over 300 days of sunshine a year. So get outside and enjoy it in the city’s more than 4,000 acres of traditional parks and parkways! Civic Center Park is a short stroll from the Convention Center and is home to many area attractions, including the Denver Art Museum and the Colorado State Capital Building. See a show. The Denver Center for the Performing Arts is just a quick walk from the Colorado Co......
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