Friday, July 11, 2008

With great love comes great responsibility

The day began in a pleasant way with a phone call from the CEO of a company that is going to exhibit in an upcoming virtual trade show. When a veteran marketer who spent several years in Corporate America and then started what is now a hugely successful marketing strategy and promotions firm comes out on her own and tells us how meaningful our product is, it makes our day. Without giving away details of the discussion, I am compelled to share her sentiments as she began describing our offering.

She said as she was watching it work, it "brought a smile to my face". She even labeled our product, among other things, "amazing", "easy" and "friendly". I believe she grasped the essence of our offerings, when she said that it helps one "segment" information.

The reason virtual trade shows will survive and thrive is because they bring a standardized experience for users. Plain and simple. All other arguments are weak -- whether we hear supposed value propositions such as no travel, no high gas prices no sore feet, better lead gathering, or the latest - low carbon footprint - none of them carry enough weight because humans are social beings and no number of virtual technologies will prevent them from wanting to meet other humans. However, because the Internet has become such a dominant source of business intelligence, a simple and engaging way to "segment" the information, and standardize the experience will go long way in making people smile.

When prospects and customers love a company or its products, the bar is suddenly raised. It is like being a teacher's favorite student. Now the student has a higher expectation to meet. The student will do everything in his or her power to not end up disappointing the teacher.

With such great love, comes great responsibility.

That literally keeps our team up at night. We want to make sure that we do everything in our power to keep surpassing our prospects' and customers' expectations. When we receive praises, the concern is that it may lull us into becoming complacent. The last thing we want to do when we hear positive comments is to relax and sit on our (might I call it) laurels. That is exactly the time to buckle up and work harder. The one thing that we have been blessed with is a passionate team.