Trade shows are organized events that bring industry buyers and sellers together in one central location. In most cases this is a physical environment (e.g., convention center), though virtual trade shows are also presented over the internet. While the cost of participating in trade shows is often quite high, marketers are attracted to this promotional method since it offers the opportunity to reach a large number of potential buyers in one convenient setting. At these events, most sellers attempt to capture the attention of buyers by setting up a display area to present their product offerings and meet with potential customers. These displays can range from a single table covering a small area to erecting specially built display booths that dominate the trade show floor.
Among the most widely used methods of trade sales promotions is the promotional product; products labeled with the brand or organization name that serve as reminders of the actual product. For instance, companies often hand out free calendars, coffee cups, and pens that contain the product logo. A yearly listing of the top promotional products can be found at the Promotional Products Association International website.