So Apple shocked the world this week. Well OK the world of tradeshow organizers, Apple fans, the San Francisco tourist board and the tech media. They said “Steve Jobs won’t be keynoting Macworld this year.” and “Apple won’t be at Macworld next year.”
Ouch. We are losing big!
Seriously, I think this is a sign of the death of the large tradeshow. CES has been declining for many years now. In my space, shows appear to be shrinking. And it is a lot harder to justify tradeshow participation. People are traveling less, and much of the information that was new and announced at a tradeshow is available via webinars, blogs, or during a special company-controlled event. Over @Scobleizer this posts hints at blogs and social media killing the big show.
This leaves tradeshows for in-person networking. And meeting face to face. One of the few times “everyone” is all together in one place. But, are people concentrating in smaller events? Private events, like customer conferences. Or do people meet online in social networks? I think many people are doing a lot of that connecting they used to do at shows more frequently on blogs, LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.
So the next question is, will Apple’s exit be better for the Mac Community? It might free up the media to cover exhibitor announcements. Or everyone could skip it since Apple won’t be there. Its hard to say. The good thing is, the show is in SF, and SF is a great place for a tech show, with so many local techies. It might get smaller, but good people could still attend. Or maybe there will be a virtual show at all Apple stores on the same day.
So how will you meet in the post tradeshow world?