Trade Show TalesBlog

Posts Tagged ‘Jimmy Buffett’

Shooting from the Hip — 4.10 (Traveling in Ohio)

May 21st, 2010 1 COMMENT
Shooting from the Hip (trade show tips)

Shooting from the Hip

Well, this week has been a whirlwind of travel and appointments with some fun scattered in. I toured Ohio all week: from Michigan to Cincinnati (Jimmy Buffett Concert), north to Dayton, over to Columbus, then Cleveland, Akron, and Canton. About 1300 total miles were driven.

I almost always travel alone. On a rare occasion, Kevin (Carty) or Dave Brown or Gina Porcaro (both from Optima Graphics) will travel with me for a specific customer event, but that is pretty rare. It just so happened that my wife was able to go with me on this trip. I am not sure she will want to go again. We did see the concert, which is always a good time, but I think she now understands that business travel isn’t leisure travel. Business travel isn’t about sightseeing. It’s a lot of packing up and moving to the next city.  Dragging everything in, setting up, and then getting it all ready to pack and leave the next morning. I am not complaining, but I hope you know this isn’t all entertainment and room service.

I want to take an opportunity to thank Vinnie Papa from Ohio Displays for taking me to the Winking Lizard in Cleveland for lunch last week.  What a cool place. Not only did he pick a cool spot, but then he (the customer) bought me (the vendor) lunch. Jim Hoffmann always says the vendor pays, but that didn’t apply this time. Sweet!

May’s business climate is certainly better than the 55 degrees and rain in NW Michigan. Classic Exhibits and ClassicMODUL are on track to have a solid May. Let’s just hope it continues until September when the typical busy season starts again. As always, thank you for your business and many thanks to all the folks I saw during my trip last week. You’re the best!

Until next week . . .

–Reid Sherwood

Shooting from the Hip — 3.10 (Feedback from Distributors)

May 14th, 2010 COMMENTS
Shooting from the Hip (trade show tips)

Shooting from the Hip

This week, I’m working from my home office and preparing for another trip on Sunday

The past few days have been interesting. Typically we begin to slow down dramatically in mid-May, but it isn’t slowing down like past years. I have had a dozen or so conversations with distributors who are saying, “Wow, we expected a crash in May, June, and July, but through the middle of May it is pretty decent.” I agree.

As you know, Classic has tried to provide attractive, cost-effective solutions over the past 18-20 months, including our Top 3 — Perfect 10, Magellan and Sacagawea. That approach has been very, very successful. But opportunities on projects larger than 20’ x 20’ have been scarce over the past 16 months, and we are pleased to see  those budgets coming back.

One of the ways we solicit feedback from our distributors is through a Feedback Email. I’m sure many of you have received this email from Mel White, VP of Marketing. We don’t send them for every order (that would be really, really annoying), but we do send about 30 or so every month. In general, the response is positive and if there are any negative comments, they are always constructive. We want you to know that we really appreciate your responses, but we also want you to know that you don’t have to wait for an email to give us feedback. Happy or sad, morose or suicidal, we want to hear from you. Well, maybe not suicidal. You’d probably be better off calling one of those 1-800 numbers instead.

Spring is finally in the air (even though 41 degrees and rain doesn’t feel like it) and that means it’s time to get the Parrothead gear out. I will be seeing Jimmy Buffett for the 43rd time next week while I travel the Midwest, so don’t be shocked if I am dressed funnier than normal.

Let’s work hard to make sure every day is better than the day before. Until next week . . .

–Reid Sherwood