SIA Snow Show Gives Emerging Brands a Chance with CRAFT @ SIA
A few years ago, show organizers of SIA Snow Show, owned by the SnowSports Industries America, started tracking independent boutique brands that had either never heard of their show, or were too small to take a booth on the showfloor.
With a huge portion of the market share already represented at the show, there still were some brands, especially in the ski and snowboard sectors, that were unfound treasures waiting to be discovered.
At this year’s show, held in February at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver, SIA gave those “small guys a chance”, according to Chris Semon, director of sales and membership, by setting aside a section of the showfloor that would highlight emerging brands at the show.
Jessica B. Eisenberg, SIA’s meetings and events manager, said there was room to display 12 brands in an area they called CRAFT @ SIA, and the opportunity sold out fast.
The emerging brands were displayed in a 20’x50’ booth, and each company was permitted to bring a couple of products to show off.
To fit with the ‘craft’ theme, the booth was constructed with organic, natural materials, Eisenberg said, and in the middle was a communal area with table and chairs where companies could meet with buyers and media.
The SIA marketing team helped promote the area through social media, email campaigns and other channels, and the brands who would be taking part also were supported through webinars that would help them interact on the showfloor.
Eisenberg said there also was a dedicated person on the SIA team to work with the brands taking part in the CRAFT @ SIA area. “We had a specific person to communicate with them and help them succeed,” she added.
In addition, there were events planned during the show in the CRAFT section, including two happy hours and a media event sponsored by Visit Denver.
The result? “Everyone was really appreciative and excited we were helping the small guys,” Semon said.
Eisenberg added, “We had incredible feedback. They were surprised how much SIA did for CRAFT. We really supported them.”
By the numbers, 83 percent of the brands who participated in CRAFT @ SIA already have committed for the 2015 SIA Snow Show, and 33 percent opted to upgrade to traditional booth space on the showfloor.
Semon said they expected that next year would likely sell out again in the CRAFT area, but added, “we want to keep it relatively exclusive.”