Several of us at Seametrics had the opportunity to attend the Irrigation Association Show in San Diego this past week. I think the weather in Seattle may have been better than San Diego for a couple of the days, but that didn’t put a damper on our time at the show.
Much work goes into trade shows in terms of planning, preparation, setup, and take-down. We’ve all heard (or been) the naysayers who believe they’re just a big waste of time and money. Yes, they can be expensive and exhausting, but I think there are invaluable benefits that occur at a show on many levels.
I personally love the opportunity to see our friends in the water flow meter industry at shows like the IA Show. It’s a time where we can meet together, experience some relational time, and plan for the future. There’s also the sometimes rare chance to interact with the end-user who happens to have a Seametrics product. It’s great to hear their success stories and to be able to help them with technical issues they’ve noticed. We like to feel in touch with our customers on a personal level. We don’t always have the fortune of meeting face-to-face those who use our product, and I believe a positive personal interaction can lead to a lasting relationship.
Learning is another big gain of trade shows if you’re willing to put on that hat. There are white papers and technical trainings being presented, keynote speakers expressing the heartbeat of the industry, and changemakers in the field being awarded for their efforts at making their small part of the world a better place. I personally love the opportunity to watch our company President speak with those in the industry who are just as excited as he is about water conservation. I always learn something new just listening to them speak about things they’ve been researching and discovering.
Finally, the time together as Team Seametrics is always the reward of a trade show experience. We had several individuals from our company come to San Diego for a day or two to experience the IA Show as it related to them in their own roles at Seametrics. They got to see the roll-out of new products they had some part in developing, and they got the chance to see what others in the industry are doing as well. This gave all of us the chance to spend some time together beyond the walls of our “home” in Washington.
All-in-all, I would have to say that our experience at the Irrigation Association Show for 2011 gets two thumbs up.