In June we hosted the Independent Electrical Retailer Product Show, along with a Golf Day sponsored by Belling, who are celebrating their centenary this year. This Golf Day, a brand new event in the IER calander was well supported with at least 30 dealers enjoying the course at the prestigious Marriott Forest of Arden Hotel, West Midlands.
Held during the day on the date of our annual Independent Business Awards, which also celebrated their 20th year, we hoped that the retailers who attend the awards in the evening would come to the Forest of Arden during the day to meet the manufacturers who invested not only financially into the new event, but also gave up time and effort to show the independent retailers their latest products and technology.
I am very disappointed to report that the attendance was pathetic. Only a handful of dealers made the effort to visit the show and this was extremely disappointing for all concerned.
With 30 brands on display from small appliances to large consumer electronics everything was covered and a visit to this event would have given the retailer a great opportunity to meet with their company representatives to discuss new products and opportunities for their showrooms.
There was a really delicious free lunch and refreshments provided at the show, for FREE! As we appreciate you all have costs associated with being away from your business and wanted to do our part! And then retailers could go on to enjoy the fantastic evening of entertaining and networking at the awards ceremony and gala dinner.
We will be working very closely with the companies who supported this launch event and had stands at the Product Show over the next ten months to ensure this event becomes a great success and a date in all the retailers’ calendars.
As a result of the disappointing attendance a steering committee has been set up and we will be meeting every few months to make sure we are putting measures in place to grow the event. We will not give up at the first hurdle, in this Olympic year watching our fantastic competitors being rewarded with so many medals in so many disciplines it has just spurred our IER team on to put in the hard work and dedication to make this a winning event for everyone involved!
I would be delighted to hear from our readers with their ideas comments and suggestions in how we make this a better day and how we encourage you to make the effort to attend. We are mindful that you have businesses to run, however all we hear from the independent market is that they desperately need support from the manufacturers and industry in general, as a result we created this one day event for them. The fact that it wasn’t deemed important enough to make the effort to attend was a real kick in the teeth, a lot of hard work, investment and care went into creating this show, which was done to try and support the industry that IER serves.
I will give you a monthly update with what we will be planning for the 2013 Product Show and how we are progressing, but we cannot make this work without your support and effort, there is no event if the dealers don’t turn up!
I would like to share with you some comments from a few of the manufacturers who were exhibiting at the IER Product Show:
The organisers did a great job … the Golf and the Awards Dinner were exceptionally well organised and received. The Exhibition was also an excellent opportunity for the trade to see at first hand a number of new product launches … pity the retail trade did not turn up in numbers to support both the Organisers and the various Manufacturers …”
John Reddington, Big Red Sales
A great opportunity for Roberts to showcase our newest range of products. We remain committed to supporting our Independent Partners and, in time, are certain that this event will become an ever more important date in their calendar.
Ann-Marie Jones, Roberts Radio
It’s always great to get the opportunity to show new technology to the our independent customers and this show gave us just that. I am sure that it will become a big date in our calendar in future years as more customers and brands get involved.
Colin Rodgers, Samsung
The location was excellent but attendance numbers must be guaranteed to ensure exhibitors achieve a return for their investment. We will support the event again next year but would like to know about the measures in place to ensure maximum dealer attendance first
Neil Truckell, Off The Wall