Nereus Account Manager Rachael Watson shares her experience at the world’s largest industry trade fair
Working at Nereus frequently means traveling for client support at events, trade shows, meetings, and various other activities. Often, that travel takes us out of the States and to some interesting places. I was just in Hannover, Germany for Hannover Messe, and not only were the people and the city delightful, but there was so much to see at the event that it was nearly overwhelming!
Hannover Messe is essentially a massive trade fair covering all aspects of the industrial tech industry. That means that you can check out everything from super cool IT R&D to tools that allow for extremely intricate industrial laser printing. The 250K plus visitors make for an especially lively show floor.
Here are some of the cooler things I saw:
A virtual warehouse. It was so entertaining to watch people put on a VR headset and just wave their hands in the air, causing a robotic worker to move a bin of bolts to a different wall drawer or replace a rack of screwdrivers. A screen displayed what the wearer was actually seeing so all of us could get an idea of the intricacy of the graphics. The robot was pretty cool, too.
Speaking of robots … there were robots playing a giant game of Connect Four, others competing against humans in ping pong and foosball, and the pièce de résistance – a bar-tending robotic arm. All of these were meant to demonstrate the finesse and responsiveness of the robots in ways that are relatable to a crowd of people from disparate countries and industry verticals.
The Siemens booth was quite possibly the largest trade show booth I have ever seen. With multiple meeting rooms, holographic displays, presentation areas, and demo stations, the booth took up the majority of an entire hall. It was an impressive sight to see and made me question how many hours they dedicated to creating such a cool and engaging environment.
Based on my time onsite, I did come away with some recommendations I would share for anyone considering this event in the future:
• Go big or go home. This is not the event where you have a minimal presence and hope to get your message out. When you are competing with these types of large-scale demonstrations, you need to have something equally impressive to encourage traffic and stand out in the crowd.
• This is also not the best event for traditional lead capturing we typically expect from tradeshows in the States. Like the rest of the EU, Germany has some fairly strict privacy laws and the attendees at this show are not even required to wear badges … so unless you are an already well-known name or ready to make a HUGE (literally) splash, it would probably be best to wait for your moment to shine.
• This fair is MASSIVE. There were 27 halls and several display/booth areas outside under a huge, covered auditorium. Getting around is a challenge so be sure you know your routes and the closest entrances and exits to the vendors you’d like to visit. And give yourself time to get from one spot to another … you’ll need it.
Our team has become accustomed to international travel and the associated jet lag over the years and we pride ourselves on working with our clients to create an engagement experience that meets their unique needs – awareness, announcement, press/analyst relations, end-user messaging, etc. – and leaves an impact. We would be happy to work with you and your team as you navigate the sometimes-turbulent waters of tradeshow planning and engagement.
Until next year – guten tag!