An exhibitor greets other attendees from their booth at the 2017 Conference in Columbus, Ohio.
Exhibitors + Presenters
So, we’re a Conference made up primarily of exhibitors and presenters. What does having an exhibit space mean? What does it mean to be an exhibitor? Exhibitors make up approximately half of the attendees at the Arts Midwest Conference. The exhibit hall, also known as the Marketplace, is home for artists, artist agents, and managers and becomes the business hub of the Conference. An exhibit space becomes an exhibitor’s “office” for the Conference week – it’s how presenters and attendees find you and find your artists.
The culture of Arts Midwest is open and friendly, with attendees really looking to find legitimate performers and venues with which to do business. I made several wonderful contacts last year that I would have made had I not attended Arts Midwest and I did the follow up necessary to actually book business. Many of those venues stopped by to see me again this year and I made wonderful new contacts to follow up with for the future. I really like this conference. – 2017 Evaluation
Each exhibit space is listed on the Marketplace map, exhibitor lists, and in the mobile app, and the name of your organization and booth number are the roadmap for attendees to find you.
A view from above the 2017 Marketplace Exhibit Hall.
How does all of this work?
So, how exactly do you find your exhibit space? And your booth number? Maybe you’re brand new to the Arts Midwest Conference and looking to exhibit in the Marketplace or you’re a regular attendee who just can’t keep straight how all of the regional conferences assign their exhibit spaces. It’s a lot of information – we get it.
Here’s a quick introduction (or refresher!) on how exhibit spaces are assigned at the Arts Midwest Conference:
- May 1: Registration opens online and exhibit spaces are on sale.
- May 1–24: Attendees planning to exhibit need to purchase a booth. The sooner the better!
If you remember anything from reading this, here it is: we offer different types of exhibit spaces (size, location, price etc.) and there are limited quantities of those types. To ensure you get the booth type you want, register as soon as you can.
- After May 24: The Conference team begins the lottery process. Organizations who purchased an exhibit space by the May 24 deadline are entered into the lottery. They are then randomized and assigned an exhibit space in the order they come up in the lottery. We do our best to place exhibitors in their preferred locations, but inevitably, lots of people prefer the same exhibit space. If your preferred location is unavailable we try to place you as close to that location and equivalent exhibit space type as possible.
- Mid-June: Exhibitors will receive an email notification of their assigned exhibit space and number.
Now remember, each booth does include some furniture, like a table, chairs, and sign, depending on what type of booth you purchased. You can check out what is included on this page.
- July: Now that exhibitors have their booth number, it’s time to finalize any details for set up. Exhibitors (one representative from each booth) will receive an email from the convention center’s decorator with the “Exhibitor Kit.” This will contain all the information you might need to order electricity, additional furniture, internet access, or even flowers!
We are working to make the Marketplace a destination where people will want to hang out and socialize when they are not meeting for business. The hope is that people will be there and take time to visit booths that they have never visited before. In general, we want to make the Marketplace more friendly and inviting. – Tommy Hensel, 2018 Conference Co-Chair