IUBH graduates report

Melanie Söhnel

Melanie Söhnel

Trade Fair as Marketplace

I first chose to qualify myself as a travel agent and successfully completed this training. During this time I also regularly worked at trade fairs as a hostess, including at the world's largest international tourism trade fair, the ITB in Berlin. At this point I realised that I was much more interested in the trade fair business than the tourism industry. I liked, and still like, the idea of the trade fair being a market place where the entire world meets. To qualify myself for a career in the trade fair and congress industry I decided to study International Event Management at the IUBH.

In the mean time I am now working as project manager for events at the exhibition hall in Augsburg. I organize, for example, the international trade fair "Golf Europe" as well as the public exhibition "Hunting and Fishing". I lead sales negotiations with potential exhibitors, provide offers, plan the positioning of exhibition stands and draw floor plans. I am also responsible for developing trade fair concepts, for example, by acquiring suitable sponsors such as associations, and working with them to figure out how they can support a trade fair. It is my job to always keep track of the current number of exhibitors, sales figures and hall assignments, as well as sales and marketing strategies.

My personal drive: When the whole team has worked on preparing a trade fair over the course of a year, it is a fantastic feeling to experience the results live! I also believe that the attractiveness of trade fairs for companies will continue to grow. The increasing use of virtual sales structures leads to an increasing anonymity in many industries. Trade fairs facilitate face-to-face communication and are therefore becoming increasingly important.

Melanie Söhnel
International Event Management Graduate 2009

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