BookExpo drew 7,425 non-exhibiting attendees--primarily booksellers, librarians, retailers and media members--while BookCon brought in 20,000 readers, up 2,000 from two years ago, when the consumer event was last held in New York, ReedPOP announced this week. According to Brien McDonald, event director for BookExpo and BookCon, trade attendance was significantly up this year compared to last year's show in Chicago, Ill., and in particular, attendance at the show's author talks and educations sessions was "exceptionally high." McDonald also noted that for 2017, ReedPOP implemented a review process for all non-buying categories of trade attendees, including self-published authors, bloggers and consultants, in an effort to curate more "high-quality attendance."
McDonald acknowledged the frustrations caused by making BookExpo a two-day event, particularly for those attending only for business-to-business interaction. Though he did not supply specifics, McDonald wrote that "[v]ery soon you will see a strategy that is more productive for these communities and in line with our commitment to a robust trade environment and are eager to strengthen distribution, rights and international business at the show." He also pledged to continue to support BookExpo, saying that "serving the trade is more important and crucial than ever."