by Gary Slack
For seven years, from 2009 to 2015, I organized and ran the world’s largest annual business-to-business marketing conference.
Sponsored by the Business Marketing Association, the conference in 2015 drew just over 1,000 B2B marketers from 550 companies, 36 states and 12 nations. At least one-fifth of the attendees were senior directors and above—VPs and CMOs.
Every B2B marketing medium and channel was represented, including vertical business publications, horizontal business newspapers and magazines, pure-play web publishers, online community owners, Google, LinkedIn, database providers, PR and social media purveyors, cable TV networks and software and marketing technology providers galore.
But just two people attended from the trade show industry, one of whom I invited to serve on a panel discussing event trends—a topic that, as a big believer in face-to-face marketing, I made sure was melded into the conference every year I ran it.
To her credit, this person…
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