A recent Harris Interactive study commissioned by American Business Media paints a rosy picture for the trade show industry when it comes to business-to-business marketing. Though executives are turning to the Web more often to find information on products and services, the study found that 70 percent said they either made or recommended purchases based on information gleaned at trade shows. It also found that the top strength of trade shows (compared to Web sites and B2B magazines) is to raise awareness of products and services, so it follows that the study found that trade shows drive executives to seek additional information on the Web (77 percent), by talking to a salesperson (73 percent), or by calling a 1-800 number (40 percent).

Senior executives reported attending more trade shows than mid-level executives each year (an average of 2.7 and 1.7, respectively), and more than 60 percent of respondents said that trade shows were the most engaging and involving resource for senior execs. While trade magazines were named as being the most engaging resource, trade shows were a close second. The study also found that the more trade magazines they read, the more trade shows they attend.

For more information or to download a PDF of the study results, click here.