While Mining and Technical Exhibitions’ (MTE’s) regular exhibitors will no doubt be familiar with the extremely effective formula of the company’s high-impact expos, new or prospective suppliers may be wondering how exactly these shows are put together and what they can expect on the day whenever they are part of one of these events.

An aerial shot of the MTE 2023 Kathu trade show – where 115 exhibitors and just under 500 visitors were hosted in the Northern Cape combo tour – showcasing free-standing options and guided walkways.

An aerial shot of the MTE 2023 Kathu trade show – where 115 exhibitors and just under 500 visitors were hosted in the Northern Cape combo tour – showcasing free-standing options and guided walkways. Image Credit: C-Chip

MTE has therefore put together a brief guide to give exhibitors some insight, though of course the best way to find out would be by attending one of the upcoming shows to observe, ‘get a feel for’ and experience it for oneself!

Planning and build-up

Travelling exhibitions are no mean feat to put together, though fortunately the MTE team has been doing so successfully for over 30 years, continually bringing value to the SADC region. Suffice it to say, an enormous amount of planning and logistics go into each event, with expos generally being organised more than a year in advance. Suppliers to the mining and adjacent industries can therefore be well informed at the start of each year thanks to MTE’s calendar, which is regularly updated to reflect developments as they occur.

MTE’s operations director Andrew Macnamara does all the homework so that exhibitors do not have to – travelling extensively across the SADC region to all the major mining operations prior to each show to gather intel on what each mine’s particular needs are, their challenges and pain points as well as the types of products or services they would most like to see.

With this information compiled, Macnamara returns to the company’s headquarters in Johannesburg, South Africa, to share it with his sales team, who will then reach out to the company’s network of suppliers who fit the bill and will also approach new business supplying solutions to respond to operators’ requirements.

With stands booked and travel arrangements made, the team will market the event in advance to generate interest and awareness using both print and digital avenues in addition to on-site marketing. For example, our monthly MTE catalogues provide everything operators need to know regarding the suppliers who have registered and on the other side of the coin the MTE Expopedia provides background on the operations as well as MTE shows for suppliers. 

All set for the big day

When the day of each exhibition arrives, the MTE team arrive on site bright and early to set up the shell scheme tents and guided walkways, as well as to make sure that the event runs smoothly and that all suppliers’ needs are taken care of. While exhibitors must bring snacks, plugs and extension cords – MTE does rent out tables and chairs and electricity generation equipment (380V) if booked in advance. Upon arrival, exhibitors are personally greeted and taken to their rented stand by the MTE team. Exhibitors must be at the venue between 7:00 and 11:00 to set up early. Once set up, exhibitors move their vehicles to the allocated exhibitor parking.

Most shows begin at around 13:00, when the entrance will open up to the mining and industrial operations who can visit the expo free of charge. MTE’s guided walkway system ensures that no stand is overlooked, though if exhibitors want to succeed, it is important to engage the passersby. Attracting the attention of market visiting is up to the exhibitor! Exhibitors should bring their latest products to demo and their most gregarious, friendly and energetic staff to entice high-quality visitors passing by the stand to engage on solution offerings. For more tips, click here.

Remember that the connections created at these events can potentially last for many years, so networking capabilities will be essential. Procurement and management personnel from mining operations typically have very busy schedules, which is why MTE organises high-impact events, open to visitors for a maximum of five hours close to the operations.

For more information about upcoming shows and how to get registered, contact the MTE sales team: 

Sheldon Greybe: +27 (0) 84 569 3516 | sheldong@interactmedia.co.za

Cathylene Labuschagne: +27 (0) 11 579 4940 | cathylene@interactmedia.co.za