Conference exhibits and industry vendor shows have historically been excellent events for bringing buyers together with sellers through… wait for it… face-to-face interactions. Although the standard business transaction of placing paper purchase orders from colossal paper catalogs has shifted over to electronic systems, the process where supply meets demand still requires the development and nurturing of business relationships. For example, I recently attended the 2014 American Society for Microbiology Conference exhibit in Boston, where I introduced myself to 25 key business representatives in a four-hour period.  I have subsequently established a dialog with 10 of those people, each with whom a valid business opportunity was established.

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