IMEX America: An Exhibitor's Perspective

Destination Canada Business Events' executive director shares tips for getting the most from the industry gathering.

IMEX America Resource Hub
IMEX America Resource Hub
Northstar Meetings Group’s IMEX America Resource Hub, sponsored by Visit Orlando, provides event professionals with all they need to know about the premier gathering for the meetings and events industry. Find essential information about the show, including safety requirements, the latest news, exhibitor and agenda details here.

As North America's premier meetings industry event, IMEX America attracts an international range of exhibitors that span all sectors of the meetings industry. This year's exhibitors are impressively diverse, including destinations like Italy, Boston, Atlanta, Argentina, Hawaii and Puerto Rico, to name a few, as well as hoteliers including Four Seasons, Wyndham Hotel Group, Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group and Associated Luxury Hotels International. This is truly the place to make connections that can last for years. 

Also included among IMEX America's exhibitors this year is Destination Canada, the organization that promotes tourism—including meetings and incentive travel—to the region. By participating in IMEX America, Destination Canada connects with buyers and assists planners to bring corporation, association and incentive events to Canada. 

In this exclusive interview, Chantal Sturk-Nadeau, the executive director of business events at Destination Canada, shares some of her insight and insider tips about how to get the most out of IMEX America.

How many years have you been attending IMEX America?

Destination Canada has been attending IMEX America for more than 10 years.

What makes the event so valuable for you and your organization? 

Destination Canada Business Events' Chantal Sturk-Nadeau
Destination Canada Business Events' Chantal Sturk-Nadeau

IMEX America is an incredibly valuable event for Destination Canada and our partners for a host of reasons. For one, it attracts more Canadian partners than any other event. Before the pandemic hit, there would be more than 60 Team Canada partners in attendance — all part of the Canada booth. Our partners would conduct thousands of B2B meetings over the course of a few days.

In addition, the format of IMEX America, with its mix of meetings, presentations and networking opportunities, enables our Team Canada partners to connect with existing clients and forge new relationships. The show is our biggest investment in the business events market as it opens the door to quality business opportunities and leads.

What have you learned over your years of attendance that has helped you to get the most out of the event?

One thing that I've learned throughout the years is that it's very important to do your pre-event homework. By that, I mean take the time to research and identify the people who you want to connect with before the event to ensure that you're setting up meaningful B2B meetings. Ultimately, your success in the show will depend on how well prepared you are to meet the right clients, with the right message and product to suit their unique needs. 

With strong B2B meetings as your base, the rest of the time allows for serendipitous connections with old and new friends. A productive show for all industry professionals, IMEX America will help you achieve your business objectives, re-connect with industry peers and build new relationships.