Food for your brain and your delight

How to make the ordinary trade show special? How to involve your guests and attract as much attention to your stand as you only wish you could? How to create a special atmosphere at your stand? How to make it memorable? The professional Dutch event-association IDEA has the right answer to all these questions. With their brilliant concept BRAINFOOD for the IDEA stand during the most prominent Dutch exhibition Event16. 

Event is the leading annual trade fair on business‐to‐business events in The Netherlands, celebrating it’s 18th edition this year. The key aim of the 2-day event is to enable event professionals, suppliers and vendors to establish and maintain contact with those who use events as an important part of their marketing and communications strategy. It is a dynamic platform for the events industry, where all the major players get together. Every year it attracts over 7,500 visitors from different areas. The founder and organizer Marc Liethof, who is also an IDEA member and owner of the Dutch event agency Aangename Zaken, welcomes the Association, providing the space for their own setting.

Every year IDEA gathers the leading Dutch event agencies in a creative way, appropriate for the ‘knowledge & content’ area. This year the concept was more than creative – BRAINFOOD – a discussion of key industry issues during a fancy lunch along with master classes from known chefs, which also became an attractive way to present a dinner setting at the exhibition. The chef’s table concept was the basis for the booth. Together with catering partners at MPS Martinair Party Service, event stylist BloemBloem and technical partner De Produktiewinkel, IDEA created the booth with a table for ten. Brainfood stands for healthy food along with energizing and boosting brainpower. Every session a light three course menu was served.

“In my opinion the best time and place for a good conversation is at the dinner table. Participants can socialize with each other and enjoy good food and fine wine. But the focus is on relevant topics and the visions of the people at the table. Everyone is given time to listen and ask questions”

Maarten Schram, Managing Director of IDEA

During the two days several acute topics were covered including the ‘code of conduct’ about the most effective co-creation methods between agencies and suppliers, and the ‘pitch code’ about the most successful ways of pitching, both for the agency and client. As well as talking with university representatives and students about their ‘connection to the field’, getting insights on how students prepare for their entrance into the event-industry and what leading agencies can do to help them. Two very important topics about current laws and regulation were also covered during the dining sessions. An important part of the agenda was the ‘meet the members’ session on both days where potential members could meet (board) members and talk about the many membership benefits.

“The Brainfood concept proved to be an excellent tool for IDEA to connect directly with partners, current and potential members and students. By choosing to engage in intimate discussion panels, we were able to get right to the point on various subjects. Being an owner of a live communication agency myself, this concept proved once again that the membership to IDEA provides me with in-depth information and valuable communication with all relevant parties in the industry. And all of that against the backdrop of a fantastic pop-up restaurant where an amazing chef served us simply delicious food specifically selected to benefit our brain and general well-being. What more could one expect from an exhibition?!”

Eva Annokkee, owner of International Orange, Chairman of IDEA


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