Annually, over a million global professionals from the Auto and Automotive industry convene at tradeshows and conferences in person and virtually. The last five years have been extremely eventful, especially for this industry.
As EVs, Autonomous Vehicles, Connected Cars, etc. took centre stage and automation began to transform the industry, Auto and Automotive events brought the entire industry together to network, share critical insights, and witness big advancements in the growing automotive ecosystem.
The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in the postponement or cancellation of various Auto and Automotive events in early 2020. With social distancing measures and travel restrictions in place, many events were postponed or cancelled, disrupting the industry. However, virtual platforms enabled event organizers to continue offering educational and networking opportunities to attendees.
In 2022, Auto and Automotive sector events started to recover, with a mix of virtual, in-person, and hybrid events emerging. The combination of virtual and in-person events allowed for greater accessibility and flexibility, allowing a more comprehensive range of attendees to participate, regardless of location. The time between early 2020 till the end of 2021 can be seen as the Covid period for this report.
We compare pre-2020 and post-2021, as pre and post-covid periods, to see where we are and the road ahead. 2022 saw a mix of virtual, in-person, and hybrid events coming to the forefront. With the increase in physical events mixed with virtual & hybrid formats, events became more accessible and allowed greater collaboration between Auto & Automotive experts.
AUTO AND AUTOMOTIVE EVENTS OVERVIEW
The Auto and Automotive events industry has seen significant growth in recent years, leading to new opportunities for collaboration, networking, and innovation. With a growing focus on EVs and sustainable transportation modes, all research points towards continued growth in this sector for the foreseeable future.
Auto and Automotive events provide a platform for industry professionals to congregate, network, share knowledge and forge partnerships. In addition, these events offer a wealth of expertise and experience from around the world and facilitate networking.
The COVID-19 pandemic significantly impacted events in this industry, as it highly relied on in-person product launches, displays and relationship building. With sudden cancellation, postponement, or transition to virtual formats for all events, adaptation took centre stage.
However, in 2022, we saw the return of events to in person formats in full force while some leveraged hybrid formats. This report will provide an overview of the number of events in the industry as a comparison metric to assess the state of events returning to normalcy post-covid and also analyze them across several key regions and other relevant trends. The core focus of the report is to access pre vs. covid status and the way forward.
(Note: The numbers of events reflect events captured on the 10Times platform across the regions. While not perfect, we expect it to be close to reality with less than a 10% standard deviation).
AUTO AND AUTOMOTIVE EVENTS TRENDS
As demonstrated by the information in Figure 1, a significant number of Auto and Automotive events have been happening over the last five years, allowing attendees to connect and engage in business with leading industry innovators, companies, and specialists.
Notably, the number of events that have occurred post-COVID is slightly higher than before the outbreak, as indicated by the data shown in Figure 1. It is likely a result of the cost-effectiveness and wider reach of virtual events (in terms of frequency but smaller size), which event organizers utilized in response to the pandemic.
Despite the abrupt shift to virtual or hybrid delivery formats for events in 2020, the importance of these gatherings did not diminish for Auto and Automotive companies that had already incorporated them into their marketing strategies.
The following charts depict trends in Auto and Automotive events within various countries, according to 10times data. The United States typically hosts a significantly larger number of B2B events compared to other regions.
AUTO AND AUTOMOTIVE TRADE SHOWS
As depicted in Figure 3, the number of Auto and Automotive trade shows has declined in recent years. It is due to the impact of the pandemic, as fewer trade shows were held in 2022 compared to 2019. However, the Auto and Automotive sector is expected to see a resurgence in 2023, with an increase in events due to the fast-paced technological advancements in the industry. It provides an opportunity for businesses to keep up with the latest trends and capitalize on the growing demand for Auto and Automotive products & services.
The data below illustrates the trend of Auto and Automotive trade shows held in four major regions over the past five years (selected on the basis of the number of events and audience size for this report).
From the data, we can see that the number of Auto & Automotive trade shows held in the USA has consistently been the highest among the five regions over the past five years. It is noteworthy to observe the speed at which each region has recovered in terms of the number of events being held.
Figure 4 illustrates the number of Auto and Automotive trade shows held in the United States over the past five years. Although the number of trade shows organized in the US post-pandemic is lower than the pre-covid number with the widespread adoption of virtual and hybrid formats, the number of trade shows organized in 2023 is expected to exhibit steady growth and exceed the level of 2019.
Figure 5 illustrates the number of Auto and Automotive trade shows held in the UK for the past five years. The data clearly shows that the number of trade shows held in the UK post-pandemic was significantly lower than in 2019. This is likely due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, which caused many events to be cancelled or postponed.
Figure 6 illustrates the number of Auto and Automotive trade shows held in Denmark for the past five years. Denmark has hosted comparatively fewer Auto and Automotive trade shows as of 2022 than before the pandemic. The demand for events is expected to increase as the country catches up with other regions in terms of industry/economy size and the number of large events.
Figure 7 illustrates the number of Auto and Automotive trade shows held in Canada for the past five years. While the post-covid number is much lower than in 2019, the country is expected to catch up with the pre-covid number in 2023.
AUTO AND AUTOMOTIVE CONFERENCES
These figures show Auto and Automotive conferences held in four major geographical regions over the past five years. Post-pandemic, the number of Auto and Automotive conferences hosted has increased and is expected to exceed pre-pandemic levels for all countries.
This seems to be due to the feasibility and acceptability of some conferences continuing as virtual only. Figure 8 shows the number of Auto and Automotive conferences held during the past five years. Overall post-covid numbers have shown a steady growth trajectory, and the trend is expected to grow in 2023.
According to Figure 9, thousands of Auto and Automotive conferences have been held in the United States over the past five years. It is worth noting that many events scheduled for 2020 were postponed or cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As illustrated in Figure 9, the USA has yet to surpass 2019 in terms of the number of conferences held post-covid.
Figure 10 below illustrates the number of auto and automotive conferences held in the UK over the past five years. Compared to the pre-pandemic era, the number of conferences hosted in the UK post-pandemic still needs to be higher.
Figure 11 shows the number of Auto and Automotive conferences held in Denmark over the past five years. Hundreds of Auto and Automotive conferences were scheduled for 2020, but most got either cancelled or switched to virtual. The conferences held in Denmark has already surpassed the 2019 levels. This may be primarily due to the fact that most events were held virtually or in a hybrid format.
Figure 12 shows the trend of Auto and Automotive conferences held in Canada in the past five years. Canada has hosted fewer conferences post-pandemic compared to pre-pandemic times.
NEW EVENTS HOSTED PRE-COVID VS. POST-COVID
The findings in Figure 13 suggest that in 2019, a significant number of new Auto and Automotive events were hosted globally. However, in 2022, the number of new events hosted increased even more, surpassing pre-pandemic levels. This is likely due to a combination of existing events being rehosted and new event IPs being created.
The increase in the number of new events can also be attributed to the widespread adoption of virtual and hybrid event formats due to the pandemic. The data suggests that the number of Auto and Automotive events (old events getting rehosted and new events launched) will continue in 2023, reflecting the fast-paced innovation in this sector.
EVENTS REHOSTED PRE-COVID VS. POST-COVID
When looking at event hosting trend, its important to note that this number is affected by bi-annual. Additionally, event rehosting means an event being hosted in the same city, as its next edition. If the event get hosted in a different city, as part of a moving event, its considered part of the event series, but a different event on 10Times platform.
As illustrated in Figure 14, overall around 37.6% event were rehosted every year pre covid. However, this trend saw a significant change in 2022, where the percentage of rehosted events increased to 81.7%.
This increase in the percentage of rehosted events in 2022 can be attributed to various reasons. Such as:
1. Organizers waiting out 2020-2021 to rehost their event in-person event. (Note: If an older edition of an in-person event is rehosted as a hybrid, it’s considered the same event with a new edition on the platform).
2. Many event organizers, who earlier were not rehosting their events, went ahead with hosting it virtually to leverage the cost advantage offered by the format.
Overall, the increase in the percentage of rehosted events in 2022 indicates that event organizers are becoming more resourceful and innovative in their approach to hosting or rehosting events.
REGION WISE SEARCH TRENDS FOR AUTO AND AUTOMOTIVE EVENTS
Auto and Automotive events attract visitors from different regions to network, exchange ideas, learn about market opportunities, and meet potential clients.
Data shown in Figure 16 indicates that before COVID-19 pandemic hit the world, the majority of Auto and Automotive events were searched in the Americas, followed by Europe and Asia.
Figure 17 illustrates the overall percentage of people searching for Auto & Automotive events in the Americas post-covid has fallen down.
COUNTRY WISE SEARCH TRENDS FOR AUTO AND AUTOMOTIVE EVENTS
The data in Figure 18 shows percent breakdown across-region for searches by professionals for Auto and Automotive events before the pandemic. The United States had the highest number of searches (58.50%), followed by UK and other countries. What’s interesting to note is that individual participant search in the United States has went down, along with UK, while that of India went up.
Figure 19 compares search percent across major countries pre-post pandemic. While no clear reasoning seems to justify why there would be less searches from UK when the number of events went up but, this insight deserves deeper analysis. Our R&D team is doing some qualitative research to get more clarity on the same
PRE-COVID VS. POST-COVID TRENDS – USERS LOOKING FOR EVENTS WITHIN THE SAME GEOGRAPHY (USA)
Figure 20 shows that a significant percentage of individuals searching for Auto and Automotive events from the United States are within the United States, unlike in other geographies, where the search seems to be higher for international events. The data in Figure 20 also indicates that the number of users searching for such events in 2022 is greater than in 2019.
But, what should be noted is the local demand for events happening within the US instead of exploring external markets. We expect this percentage to change in coming years, as shown in other countries grow, and user sellers explore new markets.
PRE-COVID VS. POST-COVID USERS FROM THE USA LOOKING FOR EVENTS OUTSIDE
Figure 21 shows the pre and post-covid users from the US looking at events outside the USA. As a result of the high number of COVID-19 cases and travel restrictions in China, the country has recorded the lowest search percentage post-pandemic from the US. This change in search patterns may indicate where US audiences are looking for potential investment opportunities or importing/exporting prospects.
PRE-COVID VS. POST-COVID TRENDS – USERS LOOKING FOR EVENTS WITHIN THE SAME GEOGRAPHY IN THE (UK)
Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, 89.9% of users from the UK searched for Auto and Automotive events being held within UK.
As per Figure 22, the number of users looking for Auto and Automotive events within the UK in 2022 is comparatively lower than the pre-covid level. The reason for this can be attributed to a higher percentage of UK companies exploring local events to either sell or source from. Will big pharma events get rehosted in UK in 2023? This trend might reverse. But it would be interesting to keep a close eye on it.
PRE-COVID VS. POST-COVID USERS FROM THE UK LOOKING FOR EVENTS OUTSIDE
Auto & Automotive events outside the UK were attracting an increasing number of visitors from UK before the COVID-19 outbreak. Figure 23 shows the pre and post-covid users from UK looking at events outside the UK. Two major points really stand out. First, the demand for events in China for this sector is almost wiped out.
This could be temporary due to China’s covid restrictions and policies, but it might take a while for this demand to reverse. On the other hand, there is a significant increase in percent share for the France. So a lot of UK businesses in this sector are looking towards America in this sector.
PRE-COVID VS. POST-COVID USERS TRENDS – USERS LOOKING FOR EVENTS WITHIN THE SAME GEOGRAPHY IN (INDIA)
Figure 24 shows that 69.9% of users were looking for Auto and Automotive events in India before covid-19.
In 2022, Auto and Automotive searches within the India soared to pre-pandemic levels and were slightly higher than pre-covid levels, as shown in Figure 21. Around 76.7% of the users from the India search for events locally, while others explore international markets.
PRE-COVID VS. POST-COVID USERS FROM INDIA LOOKING FOR EVENTS OUTSIDE
Figure 25 shows the pre and post-covid India users looking for Auto and Automotive events in countries outside India. Countries such as the US, Germany, UK, UAE have reached or are almost at pre pandemic levels. With a high number of cases in China, the COVID-19 pandemic greatly affected the Asia Pacific (APAC) events market.
In terms of search percentage for Auto and Automotive events, the United States was the top choice for users in India both pre- and post-covid. Besides the USA, user search from India seems to be well spread across regions, and no major percent change in demand, besides China & Japan.
PRE-COVID VS. POST-COVID USERS TRENDS – USERS LOOKING FOR EVENTS WITHIN THE SAME GEOGRAPHY IN (CANADA)
Before the COVID-19 pandemic, approximately 67.9% of Auto and Automotive professionals from Canada were seeking events within the country. As depicted in Figure 28, the percentage of users searching for Auto and Automotive events was notably higher than the pre-covid percentage in 2022. It is an interesting trend to observe the change in patterns in demand for events. It is difficult to predict the future with certainty, but tracking the demand of Canadian users for local events compared to events happening in other regions could provide valuable insights.
PRE-COVID VS. POST-COVID USERS FROM CANADA LOOKING FOR EVENTS OUTSIDE
Figure 27 shows pre- and post-covid users from Canada searching for Auto and Automotive events outside the country. What’s notable below is signs of an increase in interest in events happening in Japan and Spain. It would be interesting to note if any specific events caused this upsurge or if it is a long-term trend.
We should also watch how China opening up would affect the percent spread in 2023, as China lost almost all traffic in 2022. Overall, Canada seems to be highly dependent on USA events in this sector, with over 50% of users searching for events there consistently. The search results for UK, Germany and South Korea has gone up. USA took the top spot even though its percentage fell.
PRE-COVID VS. POST-COVID USERS TRENDS – USERS LOOKING FOR EVENTS WITHIN THE SAME GEOGRAPHY IN (AUSTRALIA)
Before the COVID-19 pandemic, approximately 82.6% of Auto and Automotive professionals from Australia were seeking events within the country. As depicted in Figure 28, the percentage of users searching for Auto and Automotive events has decreased in 2022, even though the percentage change is very minute. This is an interesting trend with a significant change in pattern. Would Australian users continue to grow their demand for local events over shows happening in other regions? It would be worth tracking.
PRE-COVID VS. POST-COVID USERS FROM AUSTRALIA LOOKING FOR EVENTS OUTSIDE
As per the data shown in Figure 29, a significant number of Auto and Automotive professionals from Australia have been searching for events outside Australia to meet global manufacturers, suppliers, and distributors of auto devices and equipment. If we look closely, there seem to be some interesting changes in user demand in Australia. The demands for events in China, Thailand, Italy and Germany has gone up, while USA, Japan, UK, Taiwan, Malaysia and Canada has lost market share.
SEARCH QUERIES USED BY USERS TO FIND AUTO AND AUTOMOTIVE EVENTS
During the past year, various search queries were used by users to find Auto and Automotive events. Our research found that the most frequently searched terms were “auto show,” “automotive events, “auto shows,” “auto show near me,” “automation expo,” and “auto expo.”
Users looking for events in the Auto and Automotive sector were particularly searching for auto shows. The data suggests that users utilized different queries to discover events pertinent to their specific interests and requirements within the industry.
(Note: Interesting trends can emerge if we look closely at sub-sectors and remove the obvious keywords mentioned above.)
AUTO AND AUTOMOTIVE EXHIBITORS
From global manufacturers to established device suppliers, Auto and Automotive industry professionals actively look for industry events to showcase their innovative products & solutions. The Auto and Automotive events cover the end-to-end supply chain and allow exhibitors to meet key industry stakeholders, investors, etc., from every area of the Auto and Automotive industry.
COVID-19 led to a significant decline in demand in exhibitors’ inquiries for Auto and Automotive events during the last three years. However, we see demand slowly crawling back up in 2022 and expect it to rise significantly in 2019. Some internal hypotheses we have internally are:
1. Exhibitors already paid for 2020 shows in 2019 (which for rescheduled).
2. Not enough new companies are still looking at events as a viable marketing channel.
Overall, the decrease in Auto and Automotive event exhibitors in 2022 is not unexpected, given the effects of the pandemic. While this decrease may be a temporary setback, it is imperative to note that the Auto and Automotive events industry is resilient and continues to innovate and adapt to the changing landscape. While the overall count has not reached 2019 numbers, Auto and Automotive events are expected to rebound and meet 2019 numbers in 2023.
Disclaimer: All data, statistics, and metrics used in the report are collected and obtained from 10times.
Despite the obstacles presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, auto and automotive event industry has demonstrated its capability to adapt. As a result of the widespread adoption of virtual and hybrid formats, the number of events held in 2022 has reached and exceeded pre-pandemic levels in most regions.
Our research indicates that the top five countries that hosted the most auto and automotive events were the United States, the United Kingdom, India, Australia, and Canada. All these regions have fully recovered with respect to the number of events held before the pandemic. Search trends also indicate that post-pandemic, users are primarily searching for auto and automotive events within their own countries due to concerns about health and safety, uncertainty surrounding COVID-19, and travel restrictions.
The United States has emerged as a top destination for events outside of a user’s home country, with the highest number of searches for auto and automotive events from other countries. As the events landscape continues to evolve, the demands of attendees remain unchanged and may even have increased. As a result, event organizers must be proficient in various formats and tools to deliver events that meet elevated expectations.
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