Las Vegas is about to get a little more beautiful. Starting July 13th, and running through the 15th, Cosmoprof North America will be at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center. Cosmoprof is a trade show for beauty industry pros, focusing on distributors, manufacturers, and buyers for professional and retail stores. Spas too. Like most trade shows of its type, Cosmoprof is open to industry professionals only. In fact, it’s touted as an exclusive networking and product demo trade show, targeted very narrowly to retailers and the manufacturers/third parties that supply them. No cash-and-carry will be permitted at the show, and there is no technical education available for nail techs or hairstylists.
As a retailer, manufacturer, or supplier though, Cosmoprof can’t be beat when it comes to networking and dealmaking. Exhibitors are given opportunities to send badges to prospects granting them free entry to the show, or send 50% discounts to show entry to people they currently do business with. Last year, Cosmoprof attracted 26,000 visitors, who came to see over 900 exhibitors. In an industry that’s pretty geographically spread out, shows like Cosmoprof provide an invaluable opportunity to see what’s new out there, or present your amazing new product without spending a fortune on advertising. The exclusivity of the event (they’re very careful about who gets in) adds to the appeal – exhibitors know they’re only going to reach people that matter, and attendees know they’re going to be able to network with valuable people in the field, as well as see exhibitors that are going to be legitimate. While some trade shows are very lax about attendees and exhibitors, shows like Cosmoprof use their exclusivity to their advantage.
While every trade show is obviously valuable for the networking and discovery that they offer, a burgeoning segment of the trade show market is education/conferences and special events. Cosmoprof is a little behind the curve here; most of their special events and conferences are ticketed and require a fee to enter. We wonder if that strategy will pay off in the long run amongst a population that’s rapidly becoming accustomed to ‘everything is free’.