For more than 50 years, the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) has been the go-to event for anyone and everyone in the technology industry. If you’re attending for the first time in 2019, the thought of choosing which of the more than 4,500 vendors to visit over four days can be intimidating. That’s why you need a solid game plan to find the events and booths that will benefit your business most.
Making The Most Of CES 2019: Six Tips For First-Time Attendees
Many of our Forbes Technology Council members have been attending CES for years, so they’ve learned how to navigate this behemoth of a trade show. Here are their best tips for CES newbies who want to make the most of their time at the event.
1. Download The CES App
To get the most out of any trade show or conference, prepare ahead of time. Sign up for the CES 2019 app and strategically plan which exhibits and marketplaces you need to visit. Make sure to factor “Eureka Park” into your plans to catch up on all the emerging tech. – Tammy Cohen, InfoMart Inc.
2. Make A Detailed Plan By Date, Time And Location
Get hold of the exhibition directory. It is broken down by vertical. Find all the exhibits you want to see by location and time. Split everything into days, because it can take a little while to go between different exhibition venues. If possible, stay somewhere near the monorail — it will get you to just about everywhere you need to go for CES. – Rick Conlee, Meticulosity
3. Plan Out Your Exact Route
With at least 4,000 exhibitors showcasing their products and services each year, CES is an opportunity one cannot afford to miss. If you are a first-time visitor, it’s going to be tough to find something that will be relevant to your company. Instead of roaming around the building, plan your route beforehand or you will simply get lost. You can access a list of exhibitors before the show starts. – Daria Leshchenko, SupportYourApp Inc.
4. Divide And Conquer
If you’re attending with co-workers, it’s important to see as much as possible. The only way this can be done is by splitting up when going to sessions to maximize how much you’re able to learn. If each of you attends the same sessions and events, your company might as well have saved some money and sent only one of you. Make time for lunch or dinner each day to regroup and share notes. – Abdullah Snobar, DMZ at Ryerson University
5. Make Two Passes
When attending a large trade show and exhibitor hall, it’s easy to visit the fancy booths near the entrances and ignore the possible partnerships and quality vendors found elsewhere. Make an initial fast walk-through of the expo hall. Create a mental map of booths to check out on a second, more in-depth pass. Now, you’ll know what else is out there and won’t waste time with “flashy” vendors. – Jason Gill, The HOTH
6. Focus On Your Business Objectives Before Doing The ‘Fun Stuff’
CES is the most exciting tech event on the planet. It can be easy to be caught up in the dazzling displays and buzzword-loaded trendy tech. Before you know it, the show is over and you haven’t achieved any tangible results for your business. Do your research, keeping your purpose at the forefront. After you have maximized the benefit for your business, reward yourself with some time to explore! – Marc Fischer, Dogtown Media LLC