What to Expect at Exhibitor LIVE 2021

EXHIBITORLIVE is THE professional development and education event for trade show and event marketing professionals. Produced by EXHIBITOR Media Group, it’s a four-day forum held at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas.
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Let’s flashback to the first week of March 2020. Everyone at The Trade Group eagerly anticipated EXHIBITORLIVE 2020, which kicked off at the end of the month. It’s one of our favorite expos that we attend every year. At the same time, we were monitoring worldwide events and the spread of a virus first discovered in Wuhan, China. Well, it’s no surprise how that story turned out: EXHIBITORLIVE 2020 was canceled, the world went into lockdown, and we’re still dealing with the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic to this day.

However, finally, 31 months since the last in-person EXHIBITORLIVE (2019) and 19 months since the 2020 event was supposed to occur, we’re heading to Las Vegas for the show. This year, the theme for EXHIBITORLIVE 2021 is “Re-Connect with Your Species,” and we’re excited to do exactly that. It kicks off on Halloween, Oct. 31, and runs through Nov. 3. So, what can we expect from ExhibitorLIVE 2021?

Expect Great Information

In addition to spending Halloween in Las Vegas, which is sure to be a scene, we’re looking forward to EXHIBITORLIVE’s educational conferences. These sessions include basic and advanced content, such as introductory overviews for new attendees and advanced learning sessions that focus on the latest industry innovations, information, and best practices.

Sessions occur in various ways, including presentations by industry and business authors, in-depth workshops, field trips, and profiles of excellence case studies. There are over 170 different sessions and seven learning tracks, covering a wide variety of topics from measurement and analytics to management and leadership, from global exhibit marketing to personal and career.

At specific sessions, attendees can also earn continuing education credits. EXHIBITOR sponsors the Certified Trade Show Marketer credential (CTSM), designed with Northern Illinois University. The CTSM certification program and curriculum is the only university-affiliated certification program in the trade show and event marketing industry. EXHIBITORLIVE 2021 features a special celebration for everyone who achieves their CTSM certification.

Expect Great Networking Opportunities

This year, the Welcome Reception, a meet-and-greet event featuring cocktails and conversation, is located on the show floor. Since there are two hundred exhibitors at the show (including The Trade Group, booth #339), this welcome change provides attendees with more opportunities to peruse the exhibits. We’ll be at the Welcome Reception and hope to see you there. That event is Monday, Nov. 1, and starts at 6:30 p.m.vv

Every year, EXHIBITORLIVE highlights the latest innovations to hit the trade show industry at the New Product Showcase. Many of these inventions are only appreciated behind the scenes, such as lighter materials that help our clients lower their shipping and drayage costs. However, some are designed to delight and impress exhibit visitors. This year’s event features holograms, artificial intelligence, updated lead-capture software, and more. Since we’re always on the lookout for novel and original ways for our clients to impress at their shows, we’re excited about the many partner possibilities provided by the New Product Showcase.

Expect an Awesome Award Show

Another aspect of the show that we eagerly await every year is the awards announcements. At the previous two EXHIBITORLIVE conferences, The Trade Group received a huge honor by being recognized as one of the top 40 exhibit producers In the United States and Canada.

“The second-annual Find It – Top 40 represents the most exclusive list of U.S. and Canadian exhibit providers in the industry and serves as the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval when it comes to the companies behind many of the most successful trade show stands in the world,” Randy Acker, president and chief operating officer of Exhibitor Media Group, is quoted in an article about the 2019 award. “This program is intended to spotlight the best exhibit producers in the industry while also providing a valuable resource for exhibit managers searching for new potential partners.”

Candidates for the Find It – Top 40 are evaluated on more than 50 individual criteria. The judging simulates the process a client goes through when selecting a production house. The requirements are categorized into five primary areas:

  • Company and capabilities
  • Honors and awards
  • Thought leadership and industry participation
  • Service and reliability
  • Creativity and key differentiators

“The competition for a spot on the 2019 Find It – Top 40 list was extremely competitive. After evaluating dozens of criteria and totaling the scores, nine companies were within a single point of making the cut,” said Travis Stanton, editor of EXHIBITOR magazine. “That’s a testament to not only how well this industry is served, but also the significance of this accomplishment for the 40 companies who qualified.”

In addition to our honor, many of our client projects were finalists in several 2019 award categories. 

The Trade Group’s finalist clients include leaders from a variety of industries, such as:

  • Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment at MBA 2018, finalist for the Best 10’x10′ Exhibit
  • Norwegian Cruise Lines at IMEX 2017, finalist for the Best Fabric Exhibit
  • Facebook Gaming at Gamescom 2018, finalist for the Best International Design
  • Onkyo USA at CEDIA 2018, finalist for the Best Reconfigurable Exhibit
  • Indorama at NPE 2018, finalist for the Best Use of Technology
  • Event Architecture at EXHIBITORLIVE 2019, finalist for the Best Small Booth Award


Every year we’re blown away by the content and innovations at EXHIBITORLIVE, and we’re excitedly awaiting this year’s show. For updates from the show, and other trade show-related news, including tips and tricks, keep reading our blog.

Are you attending EXHIBITORLIVE 2021? If you are, swing by booth #339 and discover how The Trade Group can help you.

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