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Julie Ginn
Julie Ginn
Julie Ginn is Marketing Director at Axium, a software development company specializing in accounting, project management and business development software solutions for the architectural and engineering (A/E) industry.

Swag bags, sunscreen and sore feet

June 23rd, 2010 by Julie Ginn

The Survival Guide to the 2010 AIA National Convention

If you’re like me, you’re recovering from the 2010 AIA National Convention and the Miami heat and humidity.

I’d never been to the AIA show before so it was amazing for me to see the staggering number of new products, technologies and services. This year’s convention showcased the new, the old and the bold from more than 800 exhibitors. I was one of them.

If you didn’t get a chance to stop by our booth, check out Axium’s Find Your Happy Place campaign online or watch an interview from Dan Laun, Axium Sales Director, about our contest.

By the way, do you wonder what exhibitors are doing while everyone else is watching presentations? We’re checking out what everyone else has to offer. That means I have the unique perspective of being both an exhibitor and an attendee — which meant putting a lot of mileage on my shoes.

I came up with a checklist of what to do, where to go and what you shouldn’t bring with you when you attend next year’s AIA Convention. Think of it as an AIA Expo Survival Guide:

Wear comfortable walking shoes — the really comfortable kind. You’ll walk almost as much as you talk.

Bring two swag bags: a good “over the shoulder” bag and an extra backpack. You will be picking up lots of catalogs, samples and goodies. Yes, goodies, from pens and magnets to beach balls, candy and other freebies. If you travelled to the show, allow enough room in your suitcase or bring along an empty backpack for the swag, like the free stuffed animals wearing a logo t-shirts that were too cute to pass up.

Business cards are the currency of choice – fill your pockets with them. Make sure you bring plenty of business cards to the event. You want to be able to give out your contact information to vendors, while getting theirs as well.

Set goals. Have a goal of what you want to accomplish, such as which vendors to visit, what presentations to attend and which new product lines you’d like to see. Set appointments with any vendor you’d like to meet with during the show.

See you nex year in New Orleans!

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