Thursday, August 10, 2017

Fierce Competition

Are you mad enough to launch an event?

RAI Amsterdam wants to encourage your madness.

Entrepreneurs and would-be event producers can enter its juried competition, Start up Your Event, through early September.

Think Shark Tank for trade shows.

A jury of event professionals will judge the ideas for first-time events submitted in terms of opportunity, feasibility, audience reach, value proposition, brand positioning, innovation, and other success factors.

RAI Amsterdam will award the winner not only six days' free space—2,000m² net for an event in October or November 2018— but, more importantly, free consulting in experience design, community management, and attendee and exhibitor marketing.

The winner will be announced at the mammoth broadcasters' show, IBC, at RAI Amsterdam in mid-September.

"There is definitely room for new shows, maybe not necessarily in the traditional exhibition format that we are used to," says Denise Capello, RAI Amsterdam's head of business development. "The world is changing and innovation rules, so there are plenty topics to be found. You need to figure out the trends and needs. Your destination is just the final piece in the puzzle.

Capello says most would-be producers who fail do so because they lack insight into their audience.

"Over the years, we've seen a number of startups, and find lack of in-depth knowledge to be a key indicator of failure. Would-be producers need to produce better feasibility studies to support their ideas, better event concepts, and better audience insights, which come from canvassing."

To date, three event concepts have been entered into the competition, which was announced in June.

"We've also had a number of inquiries from consumer event producers, whose concepts unfortunately do not meet the entry requirements of the competition," Capello says.

"But they have inspired us to come up with a new partnership model for consumer events, the first hopefully launching in the summer of 2018."
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