2015 SHOT Show Exhibitor Academy Earns High Praise


Nearly 100 new and veteran SHOT Show exhibitors last week attended the 2015 SHOT Show Exhibitor Academy, where exhibitors filled seminar rooms at the Sands Expo Center to learn how to maximize their return on investment and exchange ideas to improve the show experience for all in attendance.

P1020028The first day of the Academy opened with some quick-witted remarks by Rick Harrison, star of the Las Vegas-based reality TV show “Pawn Stars,” as he urged the crowd to continue to fight for their Second Amendment rights and protection of the shooting sports. NSSF’s President and CEO Steve Sanetti then took the mic to welcome attendees and provide an overview of the Academy’s agenda, before turning over the stage for the afternoon’s keynote address. With an emphasis on perspective and how exhibitors can look at SHOT Show as an investment from which returns should be expected, motivational speaker and trade show expert Jefferson Davis took no time at all engaging the crowd in a focused exchange of ideas that forced exhibitors to reevaluate how the 2016 SHOT Show can be their best show ever.

Treated to numerous seminars and one-on-one sessions covering everything from budgeting, advertising opportunities and vendor contracting to interacting with the media, lead retrieval and improved logistics handling, the Academy strongly encouraged interaction both between exhibitors and with show management and their partners. A special highlight to these sessions was the presentation by noted social media expert Traci Browne. The author of The Social Trade Show emphasized how exhibitors can capitalize on the power of social media through a dedicated plan of before, during and after-show outreach campaigns, and her engaging speaking style had even the most experienced vendors taking notes and asking questions.

“We were very pleased to see so much interaction among the exhibitors in attendance,” said Chris Dolnack, NSSF Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer. “With a mix of veteran exhibitors and those who had a booth with us only a year or two, everyone was truly invested in working to make the SHOT Show a better experience not just for each other, but for everyone whom they’ll interact with during the show. That’s the kind of teamwork this industry and the SHOT Show need to continue on the successful trajectory they’ve experienced over the last several years.”

The 2016 Shooting, Hunting, Outdoor Trade (SHOT) Show will be held January 19-22 at the Sands Expo Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. For more information, visit www.shotshow.org.

NSSF would like to extend a special thanks to its SHOT Show partners ConvExx, Freeman, Century Security, as well as the many professionals at the Sands Expo Center and The Palazzo and Venetian hotels (NSSF’s headquarters hotels for SHOT Show) for their contributions to the 2015 SHOT Show Exhibitor Academy.

Melissa Schilling is the Director of  Conferences and Exhibitions for the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

Are You an NSSF Member? If so, Save Big on SHOT Show Registration Fees

NSSF is urging all members of the firearms industry to complete their registration to attend the 2015 SHOT Show now and to take advantage of the significant savings offered to NSSF members during registration.

Due to multiple trade shows taking place at the same time, hotel rooms across Las Vegas are in exceptional demand during this year’s SHOT Show and we want to make sure everyone who wants to attend can and has a place to stay. It is critical that everyone who plans to attend the show complete the registration process as soon as possible.

As an incentive, remember that this year qualified NSSF buyer members receive a complimentary ticket to attend the show, and we’ve reduced the price of NSSF retailer and range member registration for SHOT Show by 50 percent over the non-member pricing. Join NSSF now as a retailer or range member (some other buyer categories also apply) and the fee to attend SHOT Show is just $35, half that of the $70 non-member fee.

NSSF also discounts the non-buyer member rate. NSSF members who are not buyers can register to attend the show for just $175 versus $350 for non-NSSF members. Media, as always, may attend the show for free, but still must register if they did not receive the emailed invitation to register.

If there’s only one trade show you can attend, this is the one you don’t want to miss. Register now. Join NSSF here.


Diedra Cauley is the Director, Exhibitions and Conferences, for the National Shooting Sports Foundation. Follow her on Twitter at @dcauley.