IRCE 2015 just wrapped up in Chicago, IL, and this is our 2nd time exhibiting / 3rd time attending. As always at this show, we had an excellent turnout, and we can safely say we’ll be exhibiting next year as well!
What is IRCE 2015 and Why is it So Exciting?
IRCE 2015 is amazing for a lot of reasons, but it all boils down to how incredibly cool it is to see so many internet entrepreneurs in one massive room. IRCE brags that it’s the “world’s largest eCommerce event”, and we have no trouble believing them. Our product, SkuVault, is geared primarily toward eCommerce merchants, so for us it’s a great opportunity to meet up with current and prospective clients at all stages of the retail chain.
SkuVault's Experience in Booth #204
Last week, our team had the opportunity to attend IRCE 2015 at McCormick Place in Chicago, IL - for several members of our team, it was their first time attending - and we had a blast!
IRCE is an enormous show, and the first-time attendees with us were all a little overwhelmed that first day. It was a good 5 hour drive from Louisville, KY (where we're based out of), and since Marketing had gone ahead to set up our booth, the rest of the team was able to get in on the day-of. For any potential exhibitors out there uncertain about how to approach a trade show of this size and duration, that's definitely a process we'd recommend, to ensure that your salespeople are nice and fresh for the conference!
The first night, Tuesday, was short, 2.5 hours, but it featured a cocktail reception, which was great for getting the attendees to meander up and down the aisles giving us the opportunity to meet some perspective new clients, and chat with many existing clients. At the end of the cocktail party we took off to dinner at the Purple Pig, where we were joined by Michael of Sunbelt Tools (AKA Deal Dreaming), one of our clients - great to meet him in person!
Days two and three of this show went by in similar fashion, with the only real difference being the slightly reduced traffic on Thursday due to it being the last day of the exhibition. These were the two days that the Vault Game really got a chance to shine! The Vault Game is an interactive game we developed to make the exchange of contact info a bit more fun - upon entering in their information in the Game, the auto-generated combination would either fail to open the Vault (but still yield a small prize!), or, in about 20 instances, opened to give out some cool prizes! We had quite a few winners, and were able to give out t-shirts, mugs, pens, and two "$500 off the first month of SkuVault" coupons, which were a huge hit!
On those two days, we also got to do lots of chatting and meeting with current clients, which is always awesome, as well as getting to talk to new people who are interested in what we're all about. We got to meet the team from Dreamway Trading (AKA Zecko's), who we also got to have dinner with on Wednesday (The Primehouse - delicious!), and Food Vac Bags. Yoni from Active Craze stopped by and said Hello, as did Ian from ShopTheFinest and Raul from Shapes Secrets.
Thursday, the third day, seemed to be show-wide acknowledged as Networking Day - we finally got to take a break from our own booth to walk the show floor, and we got the opportunity to meet many of our partners in person. It was so great to meet face-to-face with these people that we talk to over the phone all the time and to strengthen those existing relationships - we got to meet some of the folks from ChannelAdvisor, ShipStation, SureDone, ShipWorks, HubLogix, eBay, Mozu, QuickBooks, MerchantWords, Refund Retriever, World First, and more! There were also so many new people to meet who were interested in improving efficiencies in their business who could be potential partners - it seemed as if everyone we talked to was on a mission for success, which was really exciting to see. Our clients can expect a ton of new integrations in the next few months - we met so many solutions that expressed interest and user demand in building an integration to SkuVault!
There were a couple of things exhibitors did at this conference that just made you take notice. First, A BACON BAR, which was right next to a massage station. Seriously, what a perfect combo, eat bacon, get a massage. The other thing that was fun was “the back yard”, Mastercard sponsored this in the back of the room, how cool! They had outdoor games, and décor, it was just a fun spot. There was lots of great swag to be had; some of the coolest ones were probably a Rubik's Cube, a selfie stick, a mini-USB charger, a portable battery, a smoothie in a branded cup. We're always keeping an eye out for cool swag at a good price, and got some great ideas.
Overall the conference was big, it was tiring, and it was busy, but it was FUN, informative, and very, very enjoyable! We'll definitely be exhibiting again next year!