Tips for attending the 2019 AHR Expo
October 12, 2018
The AHR Expo hosts thousands of HVAC/R professionals and more than 2,100 exhibiting companies each year. The 2019 show will return to Atlanta for the first time since 2001, from January 14-16.
The exposition will spread across two halls at the Georgia World Congress Center and will feature HVAC/R technological advancements in IoT and automation, as well as building standards for indoor air quality.
Existing exhibitors are set to return with new debuts and add-ons to existing products and services, and many new exhibitors are filtering in from crossover markets.
The below tips aim to help visitors take full advantage of the show.
Register early for attendance and accommodation
Aside from allowing you to prepare in advance for your experience, registration prior to arrival is free. Additionally, your badge will be mailed to you ahead of the event so you can skip the lines.
Once you’ve registered, you can book your stay at one of the recommended affiliate hotels supporting the show. Many offer special rates and provide a shuttle to take you to and from the expo each day.
It’s important to make a plan and be intentional. You can do this by preparing in the months leading up to the show; set goals for yourself as an attendee, or for your company if you’re attending as a representative.
Make a list of all the things you’d like to take away and areas of specific interest for meeting your goals.
Once you have goals in mind, make a specific plan for each day of the expo you plan to attend. The Map Your Show planner tool on the AHR Expo website can help guide you.
The planner lets you save exhibitor profiles, calendar entries and any agenda items you may need as quick reference while at the expo. You can also add personal events and see a full listing of education and speaker sessions.
Make a plan that best meets your goals
Compile a list of exhibitors you’d like to connect with, spend some time drafting questions that help you get the answers you’re looking for.
You can explore the education series, taking advantage of sessions and classes. The education program amasses over 120 sessions, and feature professionals from HVAC/R organizations.
In addition to the free sessions, there will be many opportunities for continuing education through ALI courses. All courses hosted in this series are approved for Continuing Education Units and are a way to maintain P.E. licensure. For these sessions, advanced registration and fee payment are required prior to the show. You can register on the ASHRAE registration website.
Engage in pre-show conversations
The AHR Expo social media pages (Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram) provide real-time updates of announcements and tips that may assist in your planning. When posting on social media about the expo, you can use related hashtags (#AHRexpo, #HVACR, or specific names of exhibiting companies or speakers) so others in attendance can follow your experience and stay connected.
You can also engage in conversation with your current customers prior to the expo to lay the foundation for mutual expectations.
Promote your attendance
You can promote your attendance on your personal social media pages so that exhibitors and other attendees can connect with you during the expo. You can do this by joining the leaderboard. This is also another opportunity to engage in conversations prior to the expo about industry trends that you may want to follow up on in person.
You can also connect with AHR Expo staff prior to the show and set up a time to be interviewed about your experience from the expo floor. This will be shared on the show’s social media pages with your consent. Spots are limited, and you must be a registered attendee to be eligible.
Contact Nicole Bush at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re interested in booking a limited spot.
Tips for show days
Wear comfortable shoes and plan for a long day on your feet walking lots of real estate.
Pick up a show directory when you arrive. The directory is organized with a detailed breakdown of product categories and ordered by booth number. You can also pick up a paper floor plan that can be used to mark up with the booths you want to visit.
Take advantage of less busy times on the show floor. Typically this is the later afternoon or on Wednesday, the last day of the show. During these times you can avoid crowds that slow down your pace when navigating from booth to booth. What’s more, you’re less likely to waste time waiting for a representative to be available to answer questions.
Make sure you build time into your schedule to explore the special sections: Building Automation & Control, the Software Center, and the Indoor Air Quality Association Pavilion.
Follow up post-show
Collect and organize business cards or contacts you encounter on the show floor so you can easily follow up afterwards. It’s helpful if you make notes or reminders that will clue you in to conversations you’ve had. Allow for a little time for exhibitors to close up and arrive back to routine and then reach out per your arrangement. www.ahrexpo.com