Networking around Lake Constance

Trade fair organisers are a bold bunch. With creative industries, they want to create a new marketing and communication platform that breaks out of the normal tradeshow mould.

A new trade fair is to help establish an international network around Lake Constance - and this in the creative sector, which is giving trade fair organisers a hard time achieving long-term success. But the geographical location and a completely new approach to co-operation could promise success in a business in which others have failed. When the creative sector meets in Friedrichshafen from March 29 to 31 at creative industries, over 90 exhibitors will already be at the kick-off event. All sectors ranging from advertising and marketing, through media and software, to architecture will be there.
A tradeshow plus convention - surely that's been done before? But there is more to this new event than just a "sales show" with an accompanying programme. The networking idea underlies everything and cross-border ties are deliberately being promoted in this region where Germany, Austria and Switzerland come together. The co-operating partners who are to breathe long-term life into this project already embody this idea: The German trade fair venue Messe Friedrichshafen and the Austrian opera venue Festspielhaus Bregenz are intent on setting up a creative platform for the whole of German-speaking Europe: "We have received an extraordinary amount of positive feedback", project manager Stephan Raithel rejoices. "We seem to have had the right idea at the right time."
According to the organisers, existing marketing and advertising trade fairs only provide partial coverage of the topic. This is the gap in the market that the new trade fair in Friedrichshafen wants to plug. For example, marketing and advertising managers from industry and business can find out about new concepts for customer loyalty, the opportunities of the Internet or solutions from event marketing. The trade fair sees itself as a communication platform that permits exchange between the sectors of the creative industry.
A three-day convention programme concerned with creativity in companies and new trends in marketing and advertising will accompany the trade fair. "Top speakers, such as Peter Littmann, management consultant and former manager at Hugo Boss, Andreas Steinle, trend researcher and head of the Zukunftsakademie trend research training centre, Volker Nickel, spokesman for the central association of the German advertising industry (ZAW) and advertising and marketing specialist Wulf-Peter Kemper have already agreed to speak", Raithel confirms.
In addition to the conference, the exhibitors forum provides information about new products and services and creative solutions. The established Spotlight festival will take place alongside the trade fair. It is the biggest advertising film festival with a public and trade jury in German-speaking Europe.
But the plan looks further than exhibition year 2007 and really is an innovation. Instead of just holding trade fair number two next year, the 1st international creative industries symposium will be held in the Festspielhaus Bregenz in the spring of 2008 on the topic of "new co-operation models between architecture, design and communication". The trade fair organisers provided a glimpse of how they intend to tackle this at the beginning of the year. At a kick-off event in mid January in the Festspielhaus Bregenz, designer Alexander Szadezcky, architect Gerd Erhartt and multimedia specialist Christoph Bode described their experiences building the new Adi Dassler Brand Center.
"These respected speakers were invited so as to give an example of what you can expect at the creative-industries-conference in the spring of 2008 - an exciting exchange between the various sectors of the creative industry", explains Gerhard Stübe, managing director of the Festspielhaus Bregenz. The Bregenzers have good reasons for their commitment. "The creative industry is snowballing all over the world and is considered to be one of the motors driving the globalised economy", states Stübe. "And in the Lake Constance area, too, the economic importance of the creative sectors is constantly on the increase. Our project gives an important additional impetus to the region."
The cross-border marketing of creative industries is falling on fertile ground. Under the label "East Swiss Creative Professionals", companies from the graphical, design and marketing business on the Swiss side of the border have teamed up to present themselves. "The East Swiss Creative Professionals stand for an established network of companies that develop and implement creative services for their customers" says Jürg Thalmann, owner of the workshop for digital photography ddb based in Speicher. "We are here to ensure our customers hit the right style - whatever the communication medium, and we jointly advance innovation processes for fresh thinking in brand communication" adds Peter Schalch, managing director of the trade fair contractor Impact Unlimited from Bühler. Thalmann and Schalch are the initiators behind the Swiss companies appearance.

m+a report Nr.1 / 2007 vom 13.02.2007
m+a report vom 13. Februar 2007