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Electrify Expo continues to grow as EVs gain popularity

Electrify Expo, North America’s largest electric vehicle festival, kicked off its 2022 calendar in California this month as EV interest and popularity burgeons.

Attendance at the festival in Long Beach on June 3-5 was up nearly 40 percent from 2021 and featured 125 exhibitor booths. Event organizers said more than 25,000 demo rides took place.

“One of the biggest barriers, if not the biggest barrier to EV mobility adoption, is trial. Without trial, we don’t create those light bulb moments,” said BJ Birtwell, founder of Electrify Expo. “So we really dedicate the majority of our festival to creating those light bulb moments because if we create those light bulb moments, we’ve pushed that consumer deeper into the purchase funnel.”

Eric Watson, vice president of sales operations for Kia Motors America, said Electrify Expo attendees are essential in bringing in new consumers.

“Electrify Expo is a significant part of our multicity, experiential marketing strategy to connect with self-identified e-curious consumers on moving from traditional gas engines to EV,” Watson said. “We quickly recognized that these attendees need very little convincing to make the switch. The number of consumers that came through our booth to see our new Niro and test drive EV6 brings many new owners further down the road toward Kia EV purchases.”

Though Electrify Expo’s largest audience resides in the 35-49 age range, Birtwell said he has also seen an uptick in attendance from younger crowds.

“We love that it’s a family related event. But we do get a large portion of Gen Y and Z that are coming to the event; 16- to 25-year-olds that are looking for other modes of transportation or for fun. It’s a much younger deal and we have to support that,” Birtwell said.

Birtwell said the future of Electrify Expo would include more space for other technologies.

“You can’t talk about EVs and not also talk about things like autonomous vehicles, aerial mobility, artificial intelligence, and some of these other ideas that come along with the idea of electric vehicles,” Birtwell said. “In terms of the future of Electrify Expo, the expansion and growth into these areas is a very natural thing that we’re already starting to see.”

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