The Agenda team has announced the addition of a consumer-facing day to their July 2017 Long Beach show.
This new, third day will offer music, shopping, exclusive product, art, panel discussions, athlete signings, and food for the projected 10,000 consumers that will be in attendance.
We spoke with Agenda founder, Aaron Levant, about the decision to open a day of the show to consumers, and what we can expect from the addition.
Tell us a little about the new consumer day at Agenda.
Aaron Levant: The addition of the third day to Agenda Long Beach is something we are all excited about at Agenda HQ. It's a total disruption of our show format that has not really changed much in 14 years.
We like to think of this day as a completely new event that is best described as a curated mall of pop-up shops dropped in the middle of a music festival.
The goal is to tear down the wall between consumers, brands, media companies, and retailers to bring everyone together in a setting that sparks new energy around our industry.
You have to give kids a reason to come engage with you in person, otherwise they will just shop online. This is the reason we feel that malls are down trending -- we are in an experience-based economy and they don’t fit that need anymore. This event will be a fully immersive consumer experience that is based around our amazing brands that all have a story to tell.
Attendees will be able to shop exclusives from their favorite brands and retailers, while actually having the opportunity to meet the people behind those brands and retail shops. They will be able to see more than15 live performances on our music stage, meet the top athletes in the world, sit in on the inspiring Emerge presentations, and indulge in the best street food SoCal has to offer. It's going to be an immersive experience like no other.
Agenda was involved in organizing ComplexCon last year, which was a weekend of fashion, art, music and food. Is Agenda’s consumer day modeled after or connected to ComplexCon?
Aaron Levant: Agenda’s new festival is modeled after the ComicCon show’s format, being that it is an event for a group of very passionate fans to converge and experience together what they love.
Agenda is all about surf, skate, outdoor, and lifestyle. The music and overall vibe will reflect what the Agenda brand is in total.
What has the reaction to the consumer day been from brands?
Aaron Levant: So far the response has been amazing! I have been on the road for the last few weeks meeting with key brand partners and everyone is excited for this new opportunity and disruption to the typical trade show format. The industry has been in somewhat of a rut for most brands and retailers this past year, and everyone seems be excited about the raw energy this format will bring to the overall market.
We have brands that have stopped exhibiting for some time now coming back to the show because of this change in format, and we are starting to attract brands that have never exhibited with us before and that are coming onboard because of this new consumer show day.
We think we are just scratching the surface of where this can go long term.
How many brands are expected to participate? Will all who exhibit on the trade days also stay for the consumer day?
Aaron Levant: We are expecting all of the brands that exhibit at the trade show to cross over to the consumer day.
There are no extra fees for the brands to take part in this third day, it’s simple and adds value to our platform. It's not two different events; rather it's a single larger event that everyone has been excited to participate in so far.
How will this affect the look of the show?
Aaron Levant: I think that for year one of this format, the show will look somewhat similar to what you’ve seen at Agenda shows in the past. Maybe some brands will put more energy into their booth designs, but for the most part we are discouraging brands from spending a lot of extra money this year.
We want to undersell and over-deliver on this experience, and for year two have everyone come back in a much bigger way once they see the potential of what this can become.
We believe by 2018 in this format that we will have grown to two extra consumer days, making it a full weekend of festival experience connected to the trade show days, and attracting more than 35,000 people.
We also believe this change will attract more buyers to the trade show as they too want to experience the event and the energy.
What is the projected consumer attendance?
Aaron Levant: We are expecting approximately 10,000 consumer attendees to come out for the consumer show on July 15, plus another 3,000 to 4,000 industry guests.