Trade Show Management – An Interview with National Trade Productions
Recently, we had the opportunity to interview a well-known trade show management company in our industry, National Trade Productions (NTP). During the interview we spoke directly with Andrew Ortale, the Executive Vice President of NTP and were able to ask him questions about NTP’s service offerings and expertise. The goal of this interview is to educate, inspire, and provide a resource for trade shows seeking trade show management.
We hope you enjoy it!
10 Questions with National Trade Productions
1. Tell us a little bit about NTP. Who are you? What services and/or products do you provide?
National Trade Productions is an award-winning show management company. In 2016, we will celebrate our 40th anniversary. We specialize in analyzing events and developing new areas of growth and opportunity. Our core competencies are exhibit and sponsorship sales, exhibitor and attendee marketing, and exhibit management.
2. What are NTP’s missions and goals?
NTP produces trade shows, meetings and conventions that build communities and create powerful connections throughout the world. Leveraging a legacy of success in sales, marketing and event management, our face-to-face experiences enable the prosperity and profitability of our clients and the industries they serve.
3. What market area(s) does NTP serve?
One of the strengths of our company is the diversity of the industries we work in. Everything from transportation and education to manufacturing and medical….our staff is trained to adapt quickly and become immersed in each community we service. The diversity of our portfolio keeps our staff challenged and engaged, and provides NTP with a wealth of ideas and event solutions to offer every client we work with.
4. What makes NTP unique? What services or characteristics make NTP stand out against its competitors?
Without question, the single-most distinguishing characteristic of NTP versus our competition is our entrepreneurial spirit. In addition to working with our non-profit partners on association-owned events, NTP has a history of developing and launching proprietary events. In fact, the first event NTP ever produced was FOSE (the Federal Office Systems Expo) in 1976, a proprietary event developed and launched by Bob Harar the owner of NTP. At one time, this event was the second largest technology show in the country with more than 80,000 attendees. Since then, we have launched several other events. The advantage it gives our team is the ability to think differently, taking an ownership mentality and working every day to make every event we manage and produce better. Of our association partners, we like to say “if we offer ten new ideas each show cycle, and they adapt three…we are doing our job.” The entrepreneurial spirit of our team makes that possible.
5. Does NTP provide different level of services and/or pricing for clients based on the size of the trade show?
Yes. It would be impossible to have a one-size-fits-all pricing structure for the services we provide. We look at every variable we can to determine the resources necessary to produce an event NTP would be proud to put its name on.
6. What is the average cost for NTP’s services and/or products?
Again, it would be impossible to give you an average. We are not always the cheapest….and we are fine with that. We understand that, for some groups, price is the most important issue. There is nothing inherently wrong with that approach. We just feel there is sometimes a difference between value and price. We want to work with partners who appreciate the value we provide.
7. What is included in the cost? Does NTP provide an onsite event management team or representative during the trade show?
If I were to show you the scope of work for every one of our clients, I doubt any two would be the same. As a company who produces our own events, we have the expertise to provide full turnkey management services…including all onsite needs. For many of our clients, we do offer this type of service package. But our goal is to maximize the return for our clients based on their specific needs and resources. To that end, we customize every scope of work, taking advantage of our clients internal resources and adding to them, rather than simply looking to replace them.
8. On average, how far in advance should clients seeking NTP’s services contact you?
A little more than 12 months is typical, but we have had much shorter and longer transitions. In 2002 due to a unique set of circumstances, we took on our largest event, Coverings…a 500,000 net square foot event at the time…with only eight months to produce it. With little to no previous show information, we produced a great show (while also producing DEMA Show, our third largest event at the time, during that same eight months). I am very proud to say they are both still happy NTP clients today.
9. What trade shows and/or associations has NTP worked with in the past?
NTP has had a legacy of success in launching proprietary shows, as well as servicing association clients. Our proprietary history includes market-leading events such as FOSE, GOVSEC and our most-recent launch for the commercial space industry, SpaceCom. Our client experience spans vast industry segments and has garnered multiple industry accolades including Tradeshow Executive’s Fastest 50 and Gold 100, as well as TSNN’s Top 250. Leading client events include Coverings, DEMA Show, APWA International Public Works Congress & Exposition (now PWX), Gear Expo, APTA EXPO, and ASPE Convention and Exposition.
10. How can those interested in your services get started?
The best way to get started is to visit us on the web at www.ntpshow.com, or contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. I will be happy to continue the conversation and share what makes NTP such a special place to work.
A big thanks to Andrew Ortale for taking the time out of this busy schedule to provide us with insightful information about NTP and for the entire NTP team for helping us organize the interview. We learned a lot about NTP from Andrew Ortale and hope you did too!