November 7, 2011
In today’s business world, long-time past success is no guarantee of future success.
Even the most successful companies may launch products that fail in an amazingly short period of time – how about pizza at McDonald’s or Google’s “Lively” three-dimensional universe that was shut down after only six months?
Ultimately, to be commercially successful, one has to come to the market with a product or service that meets and exceeds consumers’ needs and offers them something that your competitors don’t.
How to determine what will be successful for those of us who work in the meetings and events industry?
Each of us must know why our clients should use our services and be able to articulate those reasons effectively, or we stand the risk of being replaced by the next “best” thing.
As Charles Darwin said, “In the struggle for survival, the fittest win out at the expense of their rivals because they succeed in adapting themselves best to their environment.”
For years, I have said that all of us who are planners must place a greater value on the services we provide – basically, if we don’t think we’re good, certainly no one else will.
We must know how our events further the success of our companies or our clients, and be able to design each element strategically, to increase the impact of the projects we deliver.
If your only differentiation from your competitors is a lower price, you are on a slippery slope that may generate new work, but stop you from making a return in relation to your labour investment.
It was interesting to see Peter Sheahan state similar thoughts in both his keynote presentation at IncentiveWorks in August and at the first IMEX America, in October.
In both presentations, he advised planners to become more strategic and collaborative if they wanted to design innovative events that would achieve great results.
My take: To be successful, you need to offer strategic event design, demonstrate an ability to work with partners and suppliers who can bring innovative elements to each project, and keep current with industry advancements that can benefit your company or clients.
And ultimately, your impressed and satisfied clients will probably be your best source of new client referrals.