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EXHIBITIONTHE HEARTBEAT OF THE UK EXHIBITION INDUSTRY01.07.2011AEO'S AUSTEN HAWKINS: "WE TAKE NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE FACT THAT EXHIBITORS HAVE NO IDEA WHAT THEY ARE DOING; WE LOOK ON AMAZED" P5 "IN THE OLD DAYS, PEOPLE WOULD JUST BUY A SHOW BECAUSE IT WAS A GOOD IDEA AND THEY WANTED TO BUY PROFITS. THOSE DAYS ARE LONG GONE." P8 01Revealed: CapCo details its masterplan and timeline for the demolition of the Earls Court exhibition centre." We have to have plans in place in case Earls Court continues"SHOW SHAKE-UPBETT and Top Gear Live announce their departure from West London for Excel London P6 CLARION CALLEN talks to the exhibition organiser about its Bluewater venue show plans P12 TICKET DEBACLEShould you be sending complimentary tickets and how do you price your show ticket effectively? P15 EXPERIENTIAL DIVIDECan exhibition organisers and experiential agencies work better together? P7 Earls Court owner Capital and Coun-ties (CapCo) has detailed its seven-phase masterplan for redevelopment of the 77-acre site including proposed dates for the demolition of the Earls Court exhibition centres. The news coincides with Earls Court and Olympia's (EC&O) decision to take exhibition bookings at both Earls Court 1 and 2 in September following its 2012 Olympic Games commitments. CapCo's masterplan, exhibited in March as part of a public consulta-tion process, sees Earls Court 1 bull-dozed in Q3, 2012 under phase two development of Earls Court village. Phase one involves developing Sea-grove Road car park for residential and commercial use. Work on the area incorporating Earls Court 2 isn't expected to com-mence until at least 2015, raising questions on whether EC&O can take bookings in that venue until then. Dates for CapCo's seven-phase ap-proach are dependent on CapCo gain-ing planning approval for its master-plan, which will be submitted in June. In the meantime, work has begun on expanding Olympia London to ensure the venue can accommodate shows re-located from Earls Court longer-term. Despite the demolition deadline, EC&O confi rmed it is taking exhibi-tion bookings in September 2012. "While there is an opportunity to continue running Earls Court, CapCo wishes to do that," Golden said. As well as CapCo, the site is ownedINSIDEP6 AEO ON EARLS COURTThe exhibition industry association puts its fl ag in the sand and announces it will lobby government for EC P9 COMING SOONTHE ALL-NEW EXHIBITION NEWS LAUNCHES 1ST JULY BIGGER: More news, new compact tabloid size BRIGHTER: More colour, more pictures, more stories BETTER: The heartbeat of the exhibition

head-to-head exhibition June 2011 21The venue you choose for your exhibition can have a significant bearing on the types of visitors that end up on the show floor. But are there other ways a venue can influence your event's short and long-term future? Below are some industry insights. can a venue make or break your show? Lucy McPhailexhibitiondirector brintexCan the "wrong" venue kill a show? Yes, but the organiser is largely guilty for choosing it. Can the "right" venue make a show? Yes, but the venue has to work with the organiser to deliver it.In order to succeed, both events and venues should behave as brands. I learned this lesson the hard way with a show I helped launched for Emap. We launched at the then London Arena in 1996, moved to Olympia six months later, then grew to fill Earls Court 1 for some years. We adhered rigidly to our brand values in marketing and presentation until - with industry support - a decision was made to move alongside the now successful fashion trade show Pure London.We then combined and moved all our fashion events to Excel London. At that time I believe this was the largest event the new venue had hosted and as it happened, Excel's birth pangs coincided with our show. The industry hated it and for them, the "corporate" environment was anathema. Excel is a fantastic venue and Brintex runs one of the world's biggest wine trade fairs at the venue each May, it just didn't resonate with this sector. With flexibility, venues really can help to develop, refresh or change the event offer to meet new demands. In 1996 the London Arena let Emap install Victorian baths in the hall to demonstrate Levi's Shrink to Fit Jeans. Last year, Bristol City Council smoothed the way for an unknown group of sportsmen to demonstrate Stand Up Paddle on the working harbour as part of Brintex's boardsports show launch HUB, and in April the Business Design Centre worked with Brintex and Hampshire Fire and Paramedics to secure approval to abseil from the rafters with a rescue dog for show demos. All these proposals were unusual, made a huge difference to the show experience and were immeasurably easier to secure with the support of venue staff and owners. Richard PeglerVenue sales director the nec GroupWhile the venue has the ability to make show a success (or not), so does everyone involved: From the venue through to the organiser, contractors and even exhibitors, each plays their part in the bigger picture. What a venue can do is add significant value by developing real market understanding and by working in partnership with exhibition organisers. Venues are no longer just about hiring out the space and within our team at The NEC we harbour a huge amount of expertise that can be shared with organisers to get the best out of an event.For example, our in-house market research team Insight works independently and in partnership with organisers to explore new markets and help generate show opportunities. As we see events shift from being product showcases through to those that are product-led but content driven, there is an increasing need for content rich events. Insight plays a key role in helping to develop and identify such content. We also actively support organisers with other marketing services such as design, digital and media. The right venue, in the right location, with the right reach and accessibility also has to be of value. That can clearly be seen when you look at the Dairy Event and Livestock Show, which came to The NEC last year. The location and flexibility of estate significantly contributed to it being the best show in the event's history. According to the organiser, 92 per cent of exhibitors rated the 2010 show either "excellent" or "good". We are well aware that from an outsider's point of view, there isn't a clear distinction between venue and organiser. We work very hard to ensure the customer has a positive experience at our venue, which we know reflects on the show's brand. For this industry to grow, develop and further evolve we need to adopt a more integrated approach to improve our customers' experience. We can only achieve this by developing that venue and organiser relationship. simon burtonhead of marketingichF eventsThe venue remains vital in fulfilling the needs of the target audience, exhibitors and, of course, us as organisers. We see the two brands, ICHF and the venue, working alongside each other. A well-known venue with a good reputation therefore reflects positively on our shows and, from a practical perspective, means people know where they are going and what to expect. In terms of other practicalities, good transport options via road and rail are essential. For trade shows, the venue also needs to be easily accessible by air with good links from the airport. Many of our visitors drive to the shows so plenty of well-organised and managed parking is important. It also goes without saying accessibility for visitors with disabilities is essential. For all those involved, friendly and helpful venue staff make a huge difference to the overall experience. The impact of this should not be underestimated. A good, reasonably priced food offering is also something we look for in a venue. It may sound like a small point, but often it's the little things that make a difference.As we move forward, venues will continue to play an integral role in all our events. One thing that's key for us is ensuring we establish and maintain a good working relationship with all our venues because a successful event relies on good teamwork. enVenue relationsHow important is the venue to the success of your exhibition? EN asks organisers and venues for their views. Q