It is an old saying, and the sentiment has some merit. Although in truth it is flawed, an old brush will sweep the yard as well as a new one. I listened to the statement last week, and I compared the sentiment to my role as MD of LizianEvents. My feeling is, as the brush ages, the sweeper learns to use it with more skill. It is the ability to learn to use tools and expertise which impress. My forte is computers, lists, organisation and communication, these are the tools of my trade and success is the objective of my endeavours.
I spent many years marketing air freight, if you want to be part of a competitive business, try the airlines. When you think about the cheapness of air fairs, remember the freight in the cargo hold is where the airline makes its money. It is the way of many businesses, the product is one small part of the infrastructure which makes the sale possible.
Airline managers soon learn about customer satisfaction and hard work. On the administration side of each flight, everything from fuel to freight weight is assessed, every penny counts. And for all of the effort put into each flight, it is the crew which are the ambassadors. During a long-haul flight, cabin crew walk many miles and have to deal with good and bad travellers, they are human, and self-control has to be a priority. A multi-million pound advertising campaign comes to nought the moment a member of the aircrew blows a fuse. The customer pays the bills – whether it is freight or passenger it makes little difference, the key is understanding the delicate relationship balance.
For the safety of every flight, a few firm rules have to be followed, and anyone who breaks just one suffers a substantial penalty. When rules are established, accepted and understood all will benefit. It is the same with society; the rules are made to benefit the majority, not the minority and anyone who decides to shift the parameters is, in truth showing little regard for other people in the community.
I am under no illusion, exhibitors attending a LizianEvent show are my customers. I provide a service, and if it excels, I will prosper. I respect all those I work with; the arrangement has to be mutual because without excellent exhibitors the business fails. The relationship has to be reciprocal and transparent; there can be no room for doubt. I once worked in a PLC where the management complained about the company. They were bringing it to its knees until a new CEO entered the arena. Within three months he removed the moaners and those who would not move on. One year later the top sales executives were earning bonuses greater than their salaries. Consensual dedication to the objective is essential, as is understanding why difficult changes have to be made.
When parameters are changed the reasoning requires explanation. Let us go back a few years, at one time the MBS circuit was small and dominated by a few organisers. I assume profits were good and expansion seemed to be smart business practice. The weight of organising multiple events means extra staff and overheads. Once the organiser has to travel, the promotion becomes expensive and the inevitable occurred, a desperate need for extra stands and higher fees. As the prices of positions increased, exhibitors looked for more products to supplement the increased fees. Before long, there was little separation between stalls, resulting in many specialist retailers having their margins reduced. It became a vicious circle, and the problem was entirely due to the stall price. The escalation has become a source of discontent. As the organisers increase the table cost so the exhibitors’ margins fall, and eventually they drop out of the loop. Sometimes we have to be brave, and I decided to lower the stand fees to give the exhibitor a chance of making a profit. To cover every hundred pound fee, an exhibitor may have to turn over two hundred pounds or more. I understand the problem and the only option is to lower the stand fee and give the retailer a chance.
The health of a show is in the quality of exhibitors and the service offered to the visitors. As the circle of expansion became a circle of defeat; both visitor and exhibitor became exhausted with the situation, the shows began to slip, and we know many of you are still reeling from oversubscribed and under-attended shows.
My feeling is this: with three excellent venues; sixty-first class exhibitors who take possession of the ethos of the event; we will prosper. With a massive marketing interaction, we will become known for quality and integrity. I am not interested in going far from my Nottingham base (I will explain my logic with Cheltenham in another post) I am determined to build a vast and dedicated visitor attendance. Work with me, share this post, share our promotions, become prosperous and make LizianEvents your events. Is it better to attend one profitable event or five which make a loss? I do not need a map of Great Britain on my website. I need one unseen word ~ Success. I do not want to impress with an alphabet of venues. I need us to be associated with another word; ‘Prestige.’
If you are a Lizian Events Exhibitor you can contribute to our WordPress Blog. Send your essays and a few Jpegs and Ian will do the rest!