Publishing Trade Shows, Conferences, and Expos: Why Go, and What to Know

April 2009
by Lin A. Lacombe

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Publishing Trade Shows, Conferences, and Expos: Why Go, and What to Know

by Lin A. Lacombe

When publishers list things to do for their books, they often include trade shows, conferences, and expos. But attending these kinds of events can be daunting—especially if you don’t investigate what they have to offer before deciding to attend, or if you are not adequately prepared once you are there. The sagest pundits will tell you to be a sponge, ask questions, take business cards, take notes, take your time, follow up, and always say “Thank you!” and mean it.

Good advice. But which events are right for you? How do you decide which ones will provide the best value in exchange for your money and time?

Go? Don’t Go?

Any publishing event can be worthwhile and exciting, but the first step is for you to evaluate what you want to get out of it. Often, the primary reason to attend is to learn.

Begin by researching possible conferences, trade shows, and other events. Look through events calendars at sites including and; check reference guides (The Encyclopedia of Associations is excellent) and pick the shows you think you might like to attend. Then talk to friends and associates w…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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