It's A Wrap at the CGTA

Supplier of the Year 2013 Outset Media Canadian Gift Association

Another January has passed, and so has another CGTA Spring tradeshow.  Here are my thoughts:

  1. For those of you who are not aware, the CGTA is no longer.  The show has been rebranded, and is now called the Toronto Gift Fair.  This new name is going to take some time to get used to.  I’ve tried repeating “Toronto Gift Fair” over and over in my head – but I’m still calling it the CGTA.
  1. The question we get asked most often is regarding traffic levels at the show.  So… how was the traffic!?!  The number of people in our booth was lower than in the past (and the parking lot seemed emptier as well).  But while the number of tire-kickers was down, we still had strong numbers of people looking to buy – both repeat customers and new customers.  We received over 100 orders at the show.  At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter if there was lots of traffic.  All that really matters is who stopped, and what the end result was. 
  1. The big highlight for me was Outset Media winning “Supplier of the Year” from the Canadian Gift Association.  Retailers are asked to vote for their favourite supplier in three categories (small, medium, and large).  We were voted “Supplier of the Year” in the medium-sized company category.  What makes this award so special?  Most of the retailers attending the CGTA (sorry Toronto Gift Fair, but I did it again) do not sell board games, card games, or puzzles.  When there are so many other categories of suppliers in the gift industry to choose from, it was a real honour to win this award.
  1. The biggest challenge of course was the weather.  The weather made travelling into Toronto very challenging for commuters.  Of course, we live in Canada, and it is January.  But it is still frustrating nonetheless!  We certainly noticed how the weather impacted traffic patterns at the show.
  1. The hardest decision we had to make this year was to pull out of the Toronto Toy Fair.  This was a really hard decision.  The unfortunate reality is, running two booths at two tradeshows at the same time stretches our manpower too thin.  And especially when you factor that both tradeshows happen to be in the same building.  Fortunately, we have yet to speak with any retailers who attended the Toronto Toy Fair that did not also attend the CGTA (arrrggghhh, I did it again, my apologies once again to the Toronto Gift Fair).

See everyone next August!  Hopefully by then I will be calling it the Toronto Gift Fair.

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