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Forums —» General Caching —» General —» A Geocaching Booth at Trade Shows
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A Geocaching Booth at Trade Shows
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scruffster



Joined: Sep 29, 2004
Posts: 1207
Location: Burnaby

PostPosted: Sat Dec 09, 2006 7:43 pm    Post subject: A Geocaching Booth at Trade Shows Reply with quote

The BCGA is committed to promote geocaching throughout BC and we're always looking for new and interesting ways to do it.

There are two trade shows scheduled within the next few months and it is not out of the realm of possibility the BCGA may host a booth at one of them. It would be an excellent opportunity to showcase geocaching to a large crowd.

The Outdoor Show will take place in mid February at BC Place Stadium. This show gathers outdoor enthusiasts from around the west coast. Since geocaching fits in perfectly with most outdoor activities, the people visiting this trade show fall into a geocaching demographic. There were over 300 booths and over 21,000 people attended The Outdoors Show last year.

Visit their webpage here: Outdoor Adventure Show

The Live It B.C. Lifestyles show will take place in late April. The lifestyle show covers a much broader spectrum including health, community and family. However, a geocaching booth would fit into the leisure area very well. Visit their webpage at: Lifestyles Show

Although there is a drastically reduced entrance fee for non profit organizations, it would still be very costly. A geocaching booth at the Outdoor Adventure Show alone would cost approximately $700. This would not be a money making venture for the BCGA. In fact, we are not sure that the benifits would outweigh the financial burden.

It wouldn't be fair to the next administration if we were to deplete the bank account on one venture. So I am opening this discussion to members. Would you like to see the BCGA sponsor a geocaching booth at a trade show? If so, how could we recoop the cost? Would getting the message to 20,000 people be worth the price?

If we could get some of the 300 exhibitors at the trade show to advertise on the BCGA website the cost would be greatly reduced.

Any comments will be greatly appreciated.


Last edited by scruffster on Sat Dec 09, 2006 8:59 pm; edited 2 times in total
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tjguy98



Joined: Aug 06, 2005
Posts: 206
Location: Maple Ridge

PostPosted: Sat Dec 09, 2006 7:59 pm    Post subject: Re: Trade Shows Reply with quote

I think it's a great idea, and as a member I would be willing to contribute some $'s towards a fund to pay for the booth expense, if that's one of your ideas.

There is also the ? of manning the booth during the show(s): we would have to figure out how many folks would be required to staff the booth.

Will it provide immediate tangible results? Probably not, but we should take every chance we can to promote the sport.
When a member of the caching community gets a chance to do a newspaper article, we think that's great exposure. Problem is, it's a one way dialog; at the shows you get a chance to have a two-way dialog with interested people.

If nothing else we may get a chance to educate members of the police forces of what the guy with the idjit box with the glowing screen in one hand and the mini-mag light in the other hand, is doing in a park at 11.45PM, and just how IMPORTANT an FTF really is! Cool

_________________
Read about my geocaching adventures on my website at:
tjguy98.blogspot.com/
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Half-Canadian



Joined: Jan 11, 2004
Posts: 59

PostPosted: Sat Dec 09, 2006 11:58 pm    Post subject: Re: A Geocaching Booth at Trade Shows Reply with quote

If the BCGA were to participate in one or more of these type of shows, what would the benefit be to geocaching in general, geocaching in BC, or to the BCGA?

I'm not saying I don't support the idea, just wondering what we as a group would stand to benefit by such a big investment of cost and volunteer manpower?

Would there be an opportunity to share booth space with Garmin, Magellan, Lowrance...or MEC, or Deakin. They would be manning their booth anyway, and enlightening the public about geocaching would potentially benefit the bottom line of any of those corporations. Just a thought.
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Catapult Jeff



Joined: Aug 24, 2005
Posts: 169
Location: Surrey BC

PostPosted: Sun Dec 10, 2006 3:56 pm    Post subject: Re: A Geocaching Booth at Trade Shows Reply with quote

Thanks Scruff for starting this off.

The Outdoor Adventure show had over 21, 000 people attend last year. This would be a great chance for us to let the masses of outdoorish people know about geocaching. The $700 figure is the posted non profit rate. As I have been in contact with the show's people I know we can get a deal if we act soon. How much will that be I don't know.

What we need to know is if you the members want us to explore these kinds of options. I will gladly give up my time to prep and be at the show.

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Half-Canadian



Joined: Jan 11, 2004
Posts: 59

PostPosted: Sun Dec 10, 2006 6:47 pm    Post subject: Re: A Geocaching Booth at Trade Shows Reply with quote

OK...I'll play the devil's advocate here for a minute. I have been involved in a few of these types of shows in the past for my own business, and the entry fee is just the beginning of the expenses.

At the very minimum, we would need to have professional-looking display materials -- posters, photos, flyers, membership applications. Most shows require you to rent backdrops (the "walls" or vertical display surfaces). We would need tables to display the literature. Ideally a slide show or powerpoint show running continually. And at the least, 2 people there at all times.

I haven't heard any reasons yet as to how participating in this show and spending $500-$1000 of BCGA funds would benefit geocaching in BC. And...since the BCGA members are the ones that have furnished these funds, how would participation in this show directly benefit the members who have invested their $10 or $15 or more? Shouldn't money in the
BCGA coffers be used for purposes that directly benefit the members?

Are there others groups that have participated in this type of activity that we could contact to see if it was worth the effort? The OGA perhaps? (I know the WSGA has not gotten involved in this type of thing.)

Again, I'm not necessarily against the idea, but I would need to see some tangible benefit to the membership other than just adding to the ranks of geocaching.com in BC before I'm convinced.

I'm planning an event in January in the Delta area for brand-new GPS owners who received them for Christmas and don't know what to do with them or how to use them. Just a drop-in kind of thing at Tilbury Ice's banquet room. I'll prepare a few basic handouts, place some really easy caches hidden around the event location, and have several volunteers who will take the newcomers under their wing for an hour or so. Net cost: maybe $10.00 for handouts. The rest is free -- news article in the Delta weekly papers, event listing at gc.com, etc. It seems like this type of thing, or Chris and Trent's radio interview, will be just as well received and attract potential geocachers without draining the BCGA bank account.

I'd love to hear some arguments that would sell me on the benefit of participating in the show! Anyone???
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scruffster



Joined: Sep 29, 2004
Posts: 1207
Location: Burnaby

PostPosted: Sun Dec 10, 2006 8:02 pm    Post subject: Re: A Geocaching Booth at Trade Shows Reply with quote

Hosting a booth at a Trade Fair would reap many benifits.

Trade fairs bring together like-minded people who are interested in new and exciting ideas. People go to these fairs to learn about the latest innovations -- not necessarily in their particular field of interest. At the same time, the general public sees geocaching as a mystery. A booth tended by geocachers rehearsed in all those newbie questions would be a great way to promote geocaching to a public that has a vague idea of geocaching at best. This can open up the world of geocaching to a lot of potential geocachers who do not yet know what geocaching is about. The BCGA's mission statement from day one has been to promote geocaching.

For the BCGA itself, it could be a great schmoozing opportunity. There will be over 300 vendors specializing in some type of outdoor equipment. If the BCGA could convince several vendors that most geocachers are outdoor enthusiasts it may benifit the various vendors to advertize on the BCGA website. Since the BCGA will accept payment in goods as well as cache, the BCGA could be up to its eyeballs in prizes for future events.

There is no doubt that there is a financial burden to a project like this. For this reason, I thought it best to open the discussion up to BCGA members. If there is a general consensus that it is a good idea, perhaps we can brainstorm and find some solutions to make it happen.
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scruffster



Joined: Sep 29, 2004
Posts: 1207
Location: Burnaby

PostPosted: Sun Dec 10, 2006 11:17 pm    Post subject: Re: A Geocaching Booth at Trade Shows Reply with quote

I forgot to mention that this is not an all or nothing thing. The BCGA could also merge with other organizations or vendors. We could simply print out some brochures and ask someone to have them on their table. As much as a booth may be an ultimate goal we may have to resign ourselves to the fact that the BCGA simply doesn't have the resources at this point in time to do something on a grand scale. And if we can't do it in a couple of months it doesn't mean we can't think about doing it some other time in the future.
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QuigleyJones



Joined: Mar 09, 2005
Posts: 135
Location: Raincouver

PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2006 6:50 pm    Post subject: Re: A Geocaching Booth at Trade Shows Reply with quote

My general thoughts that It would be nice to do however 700ish bucks to be able to do so is a bit much. (though im not the BCGA treasurer)
The best option would be to try and partner up with another group (Maybe Garmin/MEC.) and If you can do it for under $200 I'd say go for it.
But I'd rather you spent $700 on a party for my up coming "500 caches found" Very Happy Cool
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2Fidoes



Joined: Mar 26, 2005
Posts: 4
Location: Victoria

PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2006 2:31 pm    Post subject: Re: A Geocaching Booth at Trade Shows Reply with quote

For what it's worth, a friend of mine has a hobby/liesure themed business, and had a booth at the Lifestyle show. It was expensive, and a total failure. The show was almost exclusively health related, and the customers weren't willing to make the connection that liesure activities contribute to health and wellness. So unless the focus of that show has changed...

HC has a good point with extensive costs to developing a professional looking display.

Maybe a better way to participate would be to partner with business that sell GPSrs. Another way to use the GPS.

My $.02!

Marie
'one' of 2Fidoes
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Team K1W1



Joined: Feb 16, 2005
Posts: 54
Location: New Westminster

PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2006 7:19 pm    Post subject: Re: A Geocaching Booth at Trade Shows Reply with quote

I want to add some random? thoughts to this discussion.

Do we really need 21,000 more people knowing about Geocaching? A part of what intrigued me about Geocaching was it’s almost an “underground” pastime. We have introduced some friends to the sport where we were able to actually show them the sport and the right and wrong things to do. I don’t really know if this is possible by just talking with someone at a trade show or handing out leaflets. Maybe as a group we’d be better off having novice nights like the BCGA has done in the past.

As to the cost issue. As mentioned the $700.00 fee would be the start of costs. I was involved in a booth at Comdex a couple of years ago. We had to pay a huge fee for the facility staff/workers to move our display materials from the loading bay to the display area (and back after the show) – it was something like $400.00. Had something to do with liability, scheduling & unions.

Personally I can’t see the benefits.

Steve
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_canadianbacon_



Joined: Jan 05, 2004
Posts: 1154
Location: Surrey, BC, Canada

PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2006 11:12 am    Post subject: Re: A Geocaching Booth at Trade Shows Reply with quote

I also don't see the benifit of spending several hundred dollars to have a booth at the trade show. Though the BCGA is not a business, financially it has to operate as one, be frugal, and look at the return on investment.

I don't see $800 in expeditures ruturning $800 in growth to the association.

Money should be spent on getting Geocachers who are not members of the Association to become members, not to a handfull of people into geocaching, and only some percentage of those might join the association.

_________________
~~~~ _CanadianBacon_~~~~
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scruffster



Joined: Sep 29, 2004
Posts: 1207
Location: Burnaby

PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 7:45 pm    Post subject: Re: A Geocaching Booth at Trade Shows Reply with quote

It's really important to hear from members in this regard. Thanks for the comments and suggestions. It's nice to see that members are taking a hands on approach with the future of the the BCGA. Always feel free to speak up and make your voice heard.

I'd be great to continue a parallel dialogue on another thread based on everyone's ideas on everything from promoting geocaching to the future of the BCGA.
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Catapult Jeff



Joined: Aug 24, 2005
Posts: 169
Location: Surrey BC

PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 10:50 pm    Post subject: Re: A Geocaching Booth at Trade Shows Reply with quote

From the sounds of most members that responded the idea is a No. I would like to thank all for thier thoughts and comments.

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V-I-cacher



Joined: Nov 18, 2004
Posts: 56
Location: Vancouver & Island

PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2006 12:58 am    Post subject: Re: A Geocaching Booth at Trade Shows Reply with quote

errrmmm... it sounded more like a:
if we can hitch a ride with one of the "big ones" (Magellan, Garmin)
to then represent Geocaching at their booth.

Seriously it doesn't take a lot:
all you would need to do is have a leaflet print, that can be handed out or - even better - picked up so desired.

Let's start another thread.
Maybe we can do some more "Newbie"-Events and have them somewhat advertised; and I mean with that *outside* of "our" webpages, such as in newspapers, radio etc.
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Chillibusher



Joined: Apr 16, 2004
Posts: 22
Location: Chilliwack

PostPosted: Sat Dec 23, 2006 11:20 am    Post subject: Re: A Geocaching Booth at Trade Shows Reply with quote

Hey everybody,

I like the idea of promoting caching but the $700+ pricetag is a little high for this organization IMO.

I can see more of a bennefit using those funds for a more direct educational approach (like newbie nights etc.) That way the money that is spent goes directly to educating interested people rather than just throwing a net out into a huge crowd hoping to catch someone's interest at a trade show.

I think you guys are doing a great job and please don't take this post as me raining on a parade. Just my $0.02

_________________
Where did we park the car?
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gotlost001



Joined: Nov 06, 2006
Posts: 95
Location: Abbotsford

PostPosted: Wed Dec 27, 2006 1:54 pm    Post subject: Re: A Geocaching Booth at Trade Shows Reply with quote

What about a leaflet that explains about caching and the BCGA that can be available to people who are purchasing a GPS from places like the Mountain co-op or other outdoor stores? If I had seen somthing like that when I got my GPS I would have joined and strted caching alot faster. And it must be cheeper than a trade show booth. Question
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