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High Point Market Planner Feature Enhanced On IHFMA's Website

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A new upgrade to the Market Planner tool on the (High Point) International Home Furnishings Market Authority’s website makes it easier for buyers to navigate their way through showroom buildings and more efficiently schedule their visits to exhibitors and their participation in special events. “The online Market Planner feature was introduced last market and the subsequent feedback gave us the opportunity to fine-tune its functions and add to its value,” said Donna Gross, IHFMA Operations Coordinator. “After logging on through the exhibitor listing page, there are now three ways for market visitors to select from over 2300 exhibitors to build their plan – from the name, building or a complete drop down list of all exhibitors. Once they input their destination showrooms, they can browse a constantly updated list of events and add their preferences to their schedule.” She added that the special events list becomes more voluminous in the weeks prior to Market. According to Neil Marritt, Vice President of Technology Strategy at Emisare, the IHFMA’s marketing firm that redesigned their website three years ago, the Market Planner enhancements serve to streamline its functionality. “When the Market visitors input their exhibitors and events, they are able to create a PDF document that organizes the list by showroom building and indicates the closest bus stop on the downtown shuttle. This plan has the flexibility to be updated at any time as plans inevitably change,” he added. The implementation of constant enhancements to its website is not the only way in which the IHFMA uses the Internet to communicate with over 70,000 visitors from across the globe. Regularly scheduled email blasts are another tool that Emisare provides, usually scheduling one per month for the four months prior to each Market. These are sent only to those who request the mailings by opting in on the website. “We give brief listings of key information to make it as convenient as possible for busy people to get the latest updates on Market, while giving links to the areas on the website that offer more detail on issues like accommodations, travel discounts, and other pertinent topics ” said Gross.

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