Sometimes, old dogs can teach us new tricks.
This year's Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show is a prime example of how to step up your game, and it should give anyone working in the automotive aftermarket reason to be proud.
Las Vegas is in the midst of a historic events season that includes a Formula 1 race — yes, on the Strip — and the Super Bowl. The city estimates an additional $15 billion in tax revenue will be generated over the next five months.
Other events of note include the Professional Bull Rider championship, the PAC-12 football championship and the inaugural NBA In-Season Tournament.
And don't forget possibly the three largest trade shows in the U.S. — the SEMA Show, the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and World of Concrete — that have been key boosters to the city, especially in the awake of COVID-19.
While the numbers vary year to year, SEMA is generally seen as the most attended trade show in the U.S.
SEMA forecast that more than 130,000 will attend the show to see more than 2,000 exhibitor displays. That includes around 70,000 products buyers and 3,000 media.
Let's not forget AAPEX, that runs concurrently with SEMA and is expected to draw around 50,000 attendees.
Those who have attended SEMA and AAPEX are accustomed to seeing people wearing their convention badges all over the city. The people that make up the automotive aftermarket take over Vegas. It's a big deal.
But in a year full of new, shiny events, how does the old dog — SEMA has been hosting in Las Vegas since 1977 — not get lost in the shuffle? You have to up your game.
This year, organizers are introducing SEMA Fest at the Las Vegas Festival Grounds. The two-day festival includes 23 acts, such as Incubus, Wiz Khalifa, Imagine Dragons, Ludacris, Bush and Third Eye Blind.
While the team at Tire Business won't be at the festival, we certainly will be out in full force at the trade shows. We always have a booth at the SEMA Show — in the South Hall, of course, with the tires — and our team will be all over the place. The SEMA Show offers a chance for so many in the industry to get together. Some of our best stories start from interactions at SEMA.
Of course, our goal is to bring it to you, dear reader. We will be posting a lot of great sights from the show on social media, so be sure to check us out on LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram and TikTok — yes, we are now on TikTok!
The show never seems to disappoint, and it stands as an example to the strength and quality of the aftermarket and its dedicated people.