Erotica looks to build on 2010 success

Posted: February 1, 2011

Last year’s Erotica exhibition at London’s Olympia was seen by many as something of a triumph, given the general economic climate, and Erotica Chairman Savvas Christodoulou believes this can be attributed to changes the organiser made in its operations – and he intends building on these for 2011’s event.

“While the show might seem to run like a well-oiled machine, we made significant changes last year to the way we operate,” said Christodoulou. “And while some regular exhibitors were missing from the hall, those who were brave enough to exhibit were rewarded. Visitor numbers were considerably greater than 2009, leading Mike Wallace of Darker Enterprises to comment that the show was ‘just like the peak of the old days in 2005’.”

Christodoulou highlighted three factors in Erotica’s 2010 success – entertainment, ticket deals and marketing.

“Visitors pay hard-earned money to come to a show,” Christodoulou continued. “They don’t just come to buy products now – they expect to be entertained. We believe that entertainment is key to supporting the retail platform. In 2010 we offered visitors an international line up of stage acts starring Dita Von Teese, the DreamBoys striptease shows, free seminars and workshops and walking entertainers. But Dita’s appearance was not confirmed until August, and ticket sales were very good in the early part of the year. This we put down to our early booking discounts.”

Erotica usually starts selling tickets inApril for the November show but last year it began offering discounted tickets in February. For 2011, the tickets went on sale even earlier – 29th December 2010 – and 500 were sold in the first week.

“2011 is looking promising at this stage, with visitor tickets selling well, stand bookings up on normal and increasing interest from companies overseas,” said Christodoulou. “One Chinese exhibitor has enquired about booking 10 stands.”

Christodoulou also paid tribute to Erotica 2010’s marketing, which was overseen by Dan Kirkby of Kirky Monahan Publicity: “During a recession we all have to work that bit harder to succeed,” he said. “Marketing last year used a several-pronged attack and this year we will build on what we have learned, continue to offer incentives with discounted tickets and find new ways to entertain the public.”

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