Large-scale events are bringing in foot traffic, advertising and cliental to Manawatu businesses.
About 9000 people attended the Women’s Lifestyle Expo at the weekend.
The expo had more than 140 local and national exhibitors enticing shoppers with food, craft, clothing, beauty, and health products.
For many businesses, such as Palmerston North’s Pure Beauty Therapy, clients are knocking at the door in the weeks following the event.
Owner Haylee Briggs said the beauty business has attended the expo for the past seven years.
Although expo events did not benefit all business types, for her, it was another way to advertise, bring in new customers and also increase awareness of their location.
Briggs said she already had bookings for facial treatments this week and hoped some of her new clients would return.
Tony Small, from Small Wonders gym, said the expo allowed for was face-to-face interaction, which was important to his business.
Recent changes to the business and the increased importance of a social media presence helped sway Small and his wife to go to the expo, their first such event in a decade.
Small said it was a great way to talk to clients and explain what they do and why. He gave out cards and encouraged people to take a tour of the gym in person.
Since the expo there was “definitely interest already”, with an increase in likes on their Facebook page. “I said to my wife straight away that we have to do more of these [expos]”
Members of the city’s roller derby group – Swamp City Roller Rats – also chatted to women at the event. Chairwoman Wendy Lyons said some people had misperceptions or little idea what roller derby was about.
Attending the expo was a way to raise awareness and encourage people to sign up to classes or even join the club.
Cathy Tait-Jamieson, from BioFarm Organics, said they take part in two expos a year.
Their business was promoted by word of mouth and large-scale events were an important contribution to that.
“Women’s expos are really good because women do the shopping.”
The firm sold about 500 yoghurt products at the expo, she said.
Expo organiser Renee Murray said some businesses really benefited from large-scale events, which brought people into the region and into the CBD shopping and cafe areas.
Although there was no way to figure out exactly how much was spent at the expo, between $40,000-$60,000 was drawn out of eftpos machines at the venue alone, she said. “It’s good for the community”.