Meeting the new challenge: a message from the President.
By Donna Shultz

There was a time not long ago, when building beautiful cabinets, hanging a fancy sign and laying a nice carpet was all any of us had to do to make our customers happy.

But times have changed. Today we live in a world where there’s an app for everything. You can stream a thousand movies to your 4k screen, tell Alexa to play your favorite song, order anything your heart desires and it’ll be sitting on your doorstep tomorrow.

Donna Shultz speaking at ACCESS 2017

Donna Shultz speaking at ACCESS 2017

So when attendees show up at our exhibits, they have a whole new set of expectations. They want navigation to be easy and don’t ever want to wait in line. They need content that’s dynamic, lively and personal. And just like surfing the web, they want to be in charge of their own learning experience.

And because today’s attendees have seen and done so much, the bar for capturing their attention is much higher. They want to play a new game, design something, compete in some cool way or put on a headset and be transported to a place they’ve never been before.

And if your exhibit doesn’t do these things for them, they’ll just walk down the hall and find one that does.

As I begin my term as President of the EDPA, let me say that we will work together in 2018 to meet this important challenge. We will:

  • Support each member as we step up to explore and reinvent our new future
  • Come together to share our stories as one community
  • Make new friends, learn from our competitors, meet new supplier/partners, share experiences and support one another to make our businesses grow and our industry stronger 
  • Create focus at the board level, committee level and member level to drive this dynamic change

And please don’t let anyone tell you we can’t do it just because we’re builders. Experiential is just getting started. It’s nothing compared to where it can go. Imagine what we’ll be doing tomorrow and 10 years from now. And think of all the opportunities it will bring to every one of us.  

It doesn’t matter if you’re a designer, builder, supplier/partner or a portables dealer. Let’s go create those future experiences. Please spread the word, jump in and get involved.

After all, we are now the Experiential Designers and Producers Association. Let’s develop new ideas, share our stories and learn from one another. And together, as engaged EDPA members, let us be who we truly are—the future of face-to-face engagement!