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I DON’T SELL!


authorWell, I have been with Optima™ for a little over 11 years now and I have been through just about every position here (with the exception of production). I was our Receptionist, Customer Service Rep, New Business Coordinator, Estimator, New Product Development Coordinator and Frame Detailer/CAD Engineer. I have seen a lot of the business because I enjoy learning and I enjoy a challenge. I have worked with a large percentage of our customers and I feel I am pretty darn good at most of what I do. So when our new President started here almost 2 years ago, I got a couple of shocks. Read more…

What a Trade Show Could Be Like in 50 Years – A Futuristic Observers View


authorWith the rapid pace of technology and the ongoing restrictions and limitations of abuse on the world around us, I decided it might be fun to imagine what shows will be like in 50 years.

A mingling buzz is not only heard but also felt as attendees, distributors and service drones move about the event space communicating in ways we can’t possibly imagine today.

Most are wearing their eYe (Extend Your Experience) glasses, made by a company with a weird name, to see displays, collect product information and communicate with each other. Half truths or exaggerated promises in conversations are absent thanks to the new eYe app that employs a virtual lie detector and background check. No shipping or set up costs for this Trade Show since it is held in a large empty warehouse. Virtual reality trade shows are still years away since too many big businesses still depend on travel to keep them in the black. Read more…

Video’d

April 4, 2014 2 comments

gary
We have become a YouTube/Vimeo nation. We love to share and view videos. Every day, all day, we are bombarded by emails and texts. Most of us skim the bullets, headings, and bolding for the key message(s). Video is different. It’s linear. I find myself more likely to commit to a few minutes of video even when copy is available.
For sharing industry news and ideas, video is often more engaging than a static catalog or website. With today’s technology, even an amateur can get their point across, often with some funny out takes! Better yet is the opportunity to comment and share through social media. It may not be every literature professor’s favorite form of communication, but video isn’t going away any time soon.

Read more…

Magic?

March 21, 2014 1 comment

gary
Returning from another Exhibitor show in Las Vegas I made a strong connection with a popular and entertaining Vegas illusionist and the hard working installers of the many SEG (silicone edge graphics) exhibits at the show.

Criss Angel has a show called “Believe”. I didn’t see the show but have seen his work on television, including some really remarkable illusions using seemingly random pedestrians. Really freaky stuff. Most of us are satisfied with watching and knowing there has to be some slight of hand, misdirection or simple trick that fools the eye. Truly only few actually “believe”!

As the old saying goes “seeing is believing” so we are entertained. “Don’t always believe what you see” resonates more with me personally – just my suspicious nature I guess. Fact is, just because you see something doesn’t always make it so. Sometimes, the difference is all in the execution or trick. Take, for example, SEG fabric graphics. If I grabbed any unsuspecting passer by on the exhibitor show floor and asked them to install an SEG graphic, it will not fit – guaranteed. Read more…

The Do’s and Don’ts of Contests at Trade Show Displays

March 7, 2014 1 comment

Author

Attendees enjoy going to trade shows, not just to find out what new products are out there, but also to take something away from the show displays they stop by. One surefire way to get more traffic to your display and get leads is through contests and drawings. However, there is a correct and a wrong way to hold a contest at your upcoming event. Here are a few of the do’s and don’ts of using contests to boost your exhibit traffic.

Don’t: Use Just Any Prize
Sure, everyone would love to get their hands on a free iPad or technological gadget, but the chances that your company will be remembered long after the trade show are very low. Choose wisely when deciding on the item you want to hold a contest for.

Read more…

From Concept To Reality

February 28, 2014 1 comment

Author

Concepts, renderings and illustrations all are simple ideas waiting to become reality and sometimes bridging that gap is a breeze and – well, other times a bit more complicated. It does remain one of the more enjoyable aspects of being in the graphic and display business. Projects can take on the feel of that awesome science project you had so much fun with in high school or the final lab project on campus and yes, even the project that your inner self said ‘no way’ and you charged ahead anyway.

Read more…

It’s going to be a great year!

January 31, 2014 1 comment

Author

Can you feel it? No, really, can you feel it? Take a deep breath…hold it…hold it…exhale…take another deep breath…and…exhale. Yes, that is the cold air from the polar vortex but it is also the Optimism only the New Year can provide.

It is better than spring time. It’s the transition for the year past to the year future. It’s our spring training, it’s our training camp. Instead of talking about going to the World Series or making it to the “Big Game”, we are planning on having a great year, a bigger year than the last year. We are planning our work and working our plan. We are optimistic about hitting our goals, landing that big account and planning our next vacation. Yes, it’s a time to reflect but it is also a time to take action. Don’t let the optimism wane. Read more…

The Joy of Travel

January 17, 2014 4 comments

Author

So who has a good travel story? A delay, an upgrade beyond your wildest dreams, taking a seat next to a Super Model, delays beyond your wildest nightmares?? We tradeshow folk probably have some whoppers.

By the time you read this I will be home – hopefully, because I am living a whopper right now. Two months ago, I arranged a trip to the south of France for some R&D discussions with the team at Duo. A simple trip really – depart on Tuesday, arrive Wednesday morning in Paris, take the TGV bullet train to the south, meet Wednesday through Friday and fly home Saturday. I have done this a half-dozen times without a single issue.

Read more…

2014 – To Infinity and Beyond

January 10, 2014 Leave a comment

Author

Now that we can say goodbye to 2013 and the seemingly never-ending holiday, we can look forward to a banner and robust 2014!

I believe we will see a few trends continue to blow up in 2014 and each will create selling and profit opportunities. I believe backlighting, attention to visuals / the desire for aluminum structure to be hidden behind those visuals, visuals on the floor (not logos and text, but imagery that collaborates with the exhibit and environment that is being created) and technology results will all be demands from end-users.

Read more…

Are Tradeshows Worth It?

December 28, 2013 4 comments

Author

First off – Happy Happy holiday season everyone and I hope you were able to share a chuckle or two with friends and family. I just finished a five day sales meeting with my team, having first digested the closing year followed with looking forward to the coming year. We showed the team a few sneak-peeks at things to come, reviewed some great success stories (Panoramic® sales doubled), and introduced some new team members including Frank Shue, our new Director of Manufacturing.

At one point in the meeting, I had a crazy thing happen to me – I sounded just like Jim Hoffmann.

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