CES 2022: To go or not to go, that is STILL the question

With the world’s biggest tech show just a few weeks away, it seems many – including both brands and journalists – are still determining their moves.

Despite the uncertainty of planning travel these days, the Consumer Technology Association – the team behind CES – recently announced that an additional 200 companies have signed up to exhibit and an additional 10,000 attendees have registered to attend in person. Pre-show must-attend press events like Pepcom still have hundreds of press registered to attend. So, we asked a few of our press friendlies whether they are attending and if they aren’t, will they follow the news that comes out of the show? (P.S. Clarity will be there and would love to meet – drop us a line if you’ll be there @ [email protected]

Here’s what they told us:

“Personally and professionally, I’m really looking forward to going back to the Las Vegas Convention Center (and surrounding hotels and other facilities) to attend the 2022 Consumer Electronics Show. While online events work for several industries, it just wasn’t the same last year to attend CES virtually, as you can’t kick the tires on new tech, which is very much part of the experience. Hard to see a gorgeous new TV over a zoom chat, and you can’t sit in an autonomous vehicle and be driven around the Las Vegas Strip. You get the idea. And then there’s the peers I miss seeing in person, as well as the parties and other events. Of course, many may be reluctant – or even anxious – to attend such a big show with several tens of thousands of people from around the world, but I’ll do my best to play it safe and err on the side of caution,” says freelance journalist Marc Saltzman, who contributes to more than 20 prominent publications, including USA Today, AARP, MSN, etc. as well as hosting and producing nationally syndicated Tech It Out radio show and podcast.

“Unfortunately, I won’t be attending CES this year, but I’ll sure be following news and updates, as I’m very keen to find out more about innovative companies in wearable tech and femtech that will be part of the program,” adds Marija Butkovic, Forbes contributor and Founder & CEO of Women of Wearables.

Engadget Reviews Editor Cherlynn Low told us that they’ll be sending a “small team” to Vegas and will be having appointment-only meetings.

As expected, it’s a pretty mixed bag. But one thing is clear – the news coming out of the show matters, even though the event itself is going to be smaller than usual this year (as CTA CEO Gary Shapiro admits himself).

If your company is in the throes of CES comms planning, here are a few media tactics to keep in mind for yet another year of a slightly different show than usual.

  • It’s not too early to pitch. With more journalists than usual not attending this year, you don’t have to wait to see them at the show to tout your news. If you haven’t already, start reaching out to the press now to set up time for a call with your spokesperson or share your embargoed news. 
  • Don’t ignore the importance of broadcast. Similarly to last year, SMTs (Satellite Media Tours) are going to be incredibly important to help get the word out about your brand. SMTs often work with a recognizable tech expert or influencer to help tell your company’s story to mainstream and regional networks across the country, usually reaching at least 100 stations nationally. These can prove to be incredibly valuable, especially given there will be fewer press at the show itself.
  • Make the most out of the pre-shows. With generally fewer journalists attending CES and those who are attending being keen to lock in meetings in advance, shows like Pepcom and CES Unveiled are the places to be. Hundreds of press will be at these events, popping from booth to booth to get a first look at what’s coming out at the show. This is often where journalists begin their CES coverage, so it’s not one to be missed.

If you’re headed to CES in a few weeks and want to grab a coffee or a real drink (come on, it’s Vegas and that’s one thing we don’t expect to change!) then drop us a line @ [email protected].

Photo by Pricilla Du Preez via Unsplash.

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