Why You Should Attend InfoComm21

By Tammy Fuqua
Control Concepts
Account Manager

Making the decision to attend a trade show in 2021 is a difficult one. The lingering concerns over exposure to COVID, the reduced attendance for various reasons, and the concerns of committing time and money to something you are not sure will produce the results you are looking for can be nerve racking.  Despite all of this, I was recently faced with a decision back in August whether or not to attend CEDIA Expos, as manufacturers were pulling out of the show at a feverish pace.  It felt like quicksand as everyone’s grand plans to attend collapsed within a matter of days. I heard every reason imaginable for the mass exodus – COVID, supply chain issues, no new products to show, not enough people to work the booth, manufacturing constraints, and more.  You name it, I heard it.  I was trying to justify my reasons to go and mulled over every pro and con.  In the end, I seemed to be one of the few that made the decision to attended, and I was so happy I did.

You might be asking yourself why I was happy to attend a trade show that was a shell of what it was intended to be.  First, it was a great chance to see industry friends live and in person for the first time since the onset of the pandemic. People who I had not ever met in person were actually within a socially distanced arms reach!  Second, with lesser crowds, it allowed me more face-to-face time with manufacturers whom I may not have gotten to see if it was a fully attended show.  I may have been spending more time focusing on the big names and overlooking the valuable relationships that some of the startups, up-and-comers, and smaller players could offer.  I was able to connect with new manufacturers and found that we were able to have more fruitful and engaging interactions.  My words of wisdom for the manufacturers that pulled out of the show?  By not attending, you invited your clients or potential clients to look around and have insightful and meaningful conversations with your competitors who are more than happy to get the chance to meet with them.  Surprisingly, I walked away from the show with as much, if not more connections and opportunities than I may have if the event was fully attended.

With InfoComm right around the corner, many attendees and exhibitors are facing the same dilemma that I faced in considering attending CEDIA.  I offer my experience to help you make your own decision.  For me, my mind is already made up.  I’m all in!

First of all, I owe it to AVIXA to come.  Yes, you heard me right, I owe it to them.  Every year for the past five years I have attended InfoComm (last year virtually) and I need to show support in return for what this event has provided me throughout the years.  This is more than just a trade show for me.  It is a place where I see my friends, network with my industry peers, learn about the latest technology, and connect with my AV tribe at the AVIXA Women’s Breakfast.  I am so thankful to AVIXA and InfoComm for providing these opportunities!

Ask yourselves, what would you do without InfoComm every year?  How would you expand your network and connect with your clients and your peers?   As an industry, we should rally around AVIXA and each other during these difficult times.  If you are willing to travel and feel comfortable attending events personally, I encourage you to meet me in Orlando and show support for our industry, the trade show, and each other.  I am not discounting that there are still people not comfortable or able to meet in person.  I get that.  But, those who are should make the effort to be there.  I truly believe that it will be a worthwhile investment!

If you are planning to attend InfoComm21 in Orlando from October 27-29, please reach out and let me know.  I’ll be there with others from the Control Concepts team walking the floor and scheduling meetups.  I can be reached at [email protected].  I am excited for the opportunity to meet with you at InfoComm21!

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Tammy Fuqua
Control Concepts, Account Manager

Tammy has been an integral part of sales and marketing teams in both the public and private sector of the AV industry, having worked for both integrators and manufacturers. She is an active member of the AVIXA Women’s Council and is currently a co-leader of the Los Angeles and Orange Country region.