Managers’ perception towards effectiveness of trade shows and exhibitions as a method of promotion: a case of Mombasa Agricultural Society of Kenya Show
Trade shows cannot be underestimated as important marketing tools that are able to reach a huge target market at one go. ASK has over the years organized shows that have provided an even playing field in which small businesses and large ones come together to showcase their products and services. This study was conducted to determine whether the Mombasa ASK trade show was an effective promotional tool in meeting objectives of participating organizations with a view to help ensure that future shows are efficient and provide the positive impact to participants. The objective of the study was to determine managers’ perception on effectiveness of trade shows and exhibitions as a method of promotion, to establish whether organizations achieve their promotional objectives by participating in ASK shows and to determine factors that influence the participation of organizations in the ASK Shows. The survey was carried out using descriptive study. The population of the study was drawn from exhibitors of the ASK Mombasa International Show. The study used a semi structured questionnaires to collect primary data. The instrument was dropped and picked later. The respondents were managers responsible for handling the show activities. The response rate was 81.5%. Descriptive statistics was used to analyze the data. The results were depicted in frequency distribution tables, mean scores, and standard deviations to give a picture of the objectives. The study found that managers perceived ASK Mombasa show as somewhat effective meaning that ASK still has room for improvement. Most participants indicated that ASK has potential to provide the conducive environment for exhibitors to achieve their objectives during the shows. It was recommended that Mombasa ask show management develop strategies that will see the reorganization of the show. Secondly there was need to establish a comprehensive feedback mechanism to determine needs and requirements of customers and incorporating them in their planning. The study covered only organizations base in Mombasa. This may not be representative of the ASK shows in Kenya. Further the study focused only on exhibitors, leaving out a critical group of show attendees. A similar study can therefore be conducted taking these factors into account to get a more realistic picture of the effectiveness of ASK shows.