As I geared up for this year’s edition of Prowein, the annual wines and spirits trade event held in Dusseldorf, Germany, I stopped to think- Are there other industry exhibitions in the world that could generate as much thrill as those related to wines?
Commercial fairs, exhibitions and events for public have been around for as long as trade has existed in its modern form. But these trade events have evolved over time and become important business avenues, either for interacting with the end consumer or the business fraternity exclusively. Trade fairs per se, have gained prominence only in the last 4 or 5 decades.
Nowadays, it’s not hard to find industry specific trade fairs during the year, happening in some part of the world. From air shows to sophisticated technology used in heavy industries to innovation in packaging, all businesses now have an opportunity or two in this global village to expand beyond their domestic boundaries.
In many B2B fairs, a typical protocol would be: visitors meet exhibitors, business cards are exchanged, a detailed explanation from the supplier/manufacturer regarding what’s better about his/her product than the competitor, a demonstration (if feasible) and then follow-ups.
This is where the ‘excitement’ factor of a professional wine fair lies. The ambience in my opinion, is more engaging and vibrant, but the essence is still business. I am already thrilled with a child-like anticipation as I write this.
As you approach each stand and talk to the craftsmen/scientist, aka winemaker, you would already be sniffing, swirling and spitting repeatedly in no time, whilst virtually travelling in a beautiful wine country. So in five minutes, not only do you know how the wine is made, but also how it tastes and the geeky philosophy behind it. What follows is the crucial decision, whether or not you would like to buy, import and distribute this wine in your representative market. Even if you don’t happen to procure the wines, chances are that you have unknowingly connected with that memorable wine and its source, and already planning a trip there!
You are unlikely to experience this rush in a regular exhibition. Here, I might sound oblivious to many fairs where great products and services can be found but given my bias towards wine and other beverages, I choose to be oblivious, at least in this post! 🙂
For me, probably an event like the NAMM Show or a Detroit Motor Show can generate that spark and interest, but that’s because music and cars are my other favourite pursuits.As a non-wine business professional, can you think of fairs that have aroused similar interest and pulled you into attending them?
While you ponder, it’s time to pen down the experiences of three wonderful days of business, exploration and discovery!