How will we live, work and get around in the future? What have we learnt from recent experiences and how can we combine these lessons with existing knowledge? In this case, innovation is the key. Physical encounters are the core of every fair. Today, however, a variety of digital experiences have been made. So how will trade fairs develop in the future?
Light + Building from 13 to 18 March 2022 will combine the best of both worlds: naturally, the world’s leading trade fair for lighting and building-services technology will be held as a physical event at Frankfurt Fair and Exhibition Centre. At the same time, and for a whole week afterwards, it will be possible to visit this meeting place for the sector digitally. From 13 to 25 March 2022, the Light + Building Digital Extension will offer new opportunities for networking, the exchange of knowledge and encounters. During this time, participants will be able to make new contacts, discover innovative products via AI-aided matchmaking, make appointments for web conferences, chat with contacts or take part in the Light + Building complementary programme and events streamed by exhibitors.
“We are beginning with a new format and building a bridge between the physical and digital worlds. Personal encounters are of inestimable value and the heart of our business. And they will continue to be so. Nevertheless, to be able to offer market access to all interested parties, supplementary digital features are now an essential aspect of the programme of all international events”, explains Iris Jeglitza-Moshage, Senior Vice President Technology Shows, Messe Frankfurt. With the new format, Light + Building will bring together demand and supply across all borders, continents and time zones thus benefiting all concerned by making them independent of any travel or other restrictions.
The digital platform has three main applications to ensure that everyone finds what they are looking for: on the basis of interests, areas of expertise and language, a digital matchmaking takes place between exhibitors and participants, between the participants themselves and with respect to the programme of events.
The digital counter for exhibitors
The majority of companies have experience in organising and running a trade-fair presentation. For many, however, the preparations involved in a physical and digital event are something new. “Good planning and organisation are the basis for exploiting the potential of an event to the full”, says Johannes Möller, Brand Management Director, Light + Building. Even before the fair begins, companies can upload and update their digital profile, which is visible in the Light + Building Contactor. There, visitors can find, for example, the corporate profile, contact details, profiles of company contacts, products and presentations. An initial insight into the functions and contact opportunities offered by the Light + Building Digital Extension are already available in brief videos on the Light + Building website at www.light-building.messefrankfurt.com.
Thanks to the digital features, the reach of Light + Building will increase significantly via additional contacts, greater internationality and sustainable content. In addition to meetings at the fair in Frankfurt, new leads can be generated worldwide. “By permitting online participation, we offer our customers the highest degree of flexibility. Thus, each of them can decide individually when and where they communicate with customers. This can be at the Exhibition Centre in Frankfurt or, team structure permitting, staff can reply to inquiries from head office or even from home”, explains Johannes Möller. Every member of staff who is linked to the exhibitor profile can answer live contact requests from online visitors while a joint calendar helps plan appointments and fix in advance who will be available when and in which language. Exhibitors have maximum flexibility when it comes to choosing from the time slots offered: they can opt for the whole time parallel to the fair and afterwards digitally; or they can limit contact availability to certain times of day or time zones. Optionally, they can also communicate via the digital platform after the physical event in Frankfurt has closed its doors. Another benefit is the transparent nature of the platform. Additionally, a detailed visitor analysis is possible using general corporate data thanks to digital lead capture. Thus, exhibitors can process their contacts efficiently after the fair.
Networking for visitors
Naturally, visitors can also communicate with each other via the Light + Building Digital Extension. Matches of potential interest are suggested on the basis of questions and visitor behaviour and these matches can be used by visitors to expand their networks. It is also possible for them to make direct contact with each other. Thus, in common with other well-known business platforms, it is possible for visitors to exchange ideas and information.
Programme of events: knowledge transfer around the clock
No matter whether on site or digital, it can happen that someone misses one of the events on the complementary programme. For such cases, too, there is a solution: the programme of events at Light + Building, as well as the presentations by exhibitors, will be streamed and all contributions made available as on-demand videos both during and after the fair.
Light + Building will take place from 13 to 18 March 2022.