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AuthorI have been on the road for the better part of two weeks and hit 6-7 airports and added a number of points to the old Hilton account. I have said it before and will say it again, the basics of travel suck – airport lines, rental car crud, GPS that sends you through the EZ Pass lane and a subsequent $34.50 toll because you have no ticket… However, visiting with customers is always fantastic. Never fails that I learn a few things and some ideas are generated. This past trip is no exception and two conversation I have had this week sit top of mind. The set-up for comparison: SEG fabric graphics and the perception of SEG as a building material and key ingredient in a project. On one hand a client who views SEG as a commodity item and another who views the graphic genre as incredibly complex and a very strong filter to choose who can produce graphics for that company.

One individual described that “everybody” makes SEG now and it is advertised everywhere – therefor SEG is a commodity. Its high visibility from a marketing and advertising perspective has registered that the offering is simple and should be much, much cheaper to purchase than it is. This individual does not understand why a vendor would have to ask a lot of pre-production questions. The other individual shared scenarios of being burned when “the local guy” started producing SEG and decided to use sintra instead of Silicone. Author Still SEG (Sintra Edged Graphic) but a nightmare to install and the vendor used thin “cheap fabric” and it ultimately had to be remade by another company. This later discussion centered on the right materials, the right methods for measuring and a value-based discussion. In full disclosure, the second customer has not bought SEG from Optima and I was doing my best to generate a quote opportunity to prove ourselves. I am happy to say we have since quoted and are going to do our first project, so that is cool and makes me feel like I helped pay my salary for the day.

AuthorThe observation I made was that these two individuals shared very different perspectives and I agreed with one much more than the other. Cars are advertised everywhere, you see them everywhere, but not everyone can build a Mercedes AMG or a Cadillac V series. We can debate the auto mfg and make and model, but as I see it, just because I am exposed, if not over-exposed, to auto adverts, making a car is no simple task. Based on the complexity of those autos, they carry different price points and perceived values. I am not selling cars here, but am focused on perception of a product or service having an expected selling price based on visibility of that item and specifically, the perception that it should be cheap for me to buy because “anybody can do it”… Polar opposite meetings – sell it to me cheap vs. I want to buy value and peace of mind. Onward ho and may we all keep selling value and helping people get what they pay for. Have a great weekend.

About the Author

Dave Brown is the Vice President of Sales at Optima™.
He has been in the Trade Show industry since the early 90s.

  1. Gary Camarato
    May 17, 2016 at 10:21 am

    Reblogged this on Optima Graphics Blog and commented:

    Still very true today as it was a year ago!

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