We were lucky enough to attend International Confex at London’s iconic Olympia in Kensington this week. We reviewed it’s sister conference, the Event Production Show, and said it deserved a spotlight of its own, so we had to extend the courtesy to Confex. It’s definitely deserving. Both Confex and EPS focus on suppliers and organising events, but EPS focused on event tech (we spent a lot of time there…). But there was a lot in Confex worth talking about, so have no fear and be ready for us to drop some Event Prof knowledge.
In general International Confex could look like many event and supplier shows. It’s a large space filled with aisles and aisles worth of supplier of everything you could ever need. However, if you judged this book by that cover you’d be wrong and here’s why….
Yes it’s filled with lots of suppliers, as you’d expect, but Confex’s supplier’s aren’t your average suppliers… You’re not going to be walking down aisles with what seems to be the same nasal-ey voiced salesmen selling you lanyards. Confex’s halls were filled with the maddest, wackiest versions of suppliers. Need a ice cream supplier? Easy, but Confex’s all use liquid nitrogen. Need a music act? Confex’s musicians will do any song on request. You get the idea … Confex takes the average supplier and gives you one filled with a bit more zest. Our favourites being IdeasBox and their Sipsmith Gin tricycle… Have you ever heard of anything so good? Or the massive dancing robot called Titan…
It wasn’t just the exhibitors that made Confex great. It was the talks. Just like we said for its sister convention, EPS. Confex delivered a wealth of information to its attendees. Our favourite talk being ‘The Brand View’ which focussed on how brands have to change their image as the industry changes. Why was this one special? It’s simple really, the experts talking. It had the Events Manager from Sony’s Playstation and Branding Manager from Innocent smoothies… Two behemoths in the world of branding and marketing. But what was their best piece of information?
Everyone needs to focus on social media! It’s your public face of the company and one of your main points of contact with your customers. You need to try and be as original as possible in your brand image and voice to set yourself apart from your competitors. We all need to re-read that, take it to heart, commit to memory and tattoo it to ourselves.
Overall Confex was a great event. You had the traditional style of event show with crazy twist and it’s exactly what our industry needs! We whole heartedly recommend the show to Event Profs! We’ll be back next year. That’s for sure!
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