Trade Show Handbook  
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Vertical and Horizontal Trade Shows

There are two types of trade shows where you can present your product or service. The first type is horizontal, meaning that vendors come with a wide variety of products and services and the consumers who attend usually come from a single market and are out to find a specific product or service or are looking to expand their product lines. The second type is vertical, meaning that the show is more focused on one type of product and market allowing you to concentrate on your objectives for the show. The one disadvantage to this type of show is that your product or service must be the main attraction or you won't get the expected outcome.

An example of a horizontal show would be a show for occupational safety and health services because those who attend would be from all different markets. An example of a vertical trade show would be one specifically for boating or physical therapists. By looking at the list of venders and consumers of the trade show, you can tell what variations the trade show will have (vertical sellers with horizontal consumers and vice versa).

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