Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Virtual Trade Shows

There are LOTS of ways we can work together to make each of our businesses stronger and I am exploring several options besides our networking events. You may be aware that I am working on virtual meetings and events for some of my clients and it is an effective way of getting rich content out to potential members, buyers or fans. I have also done virtual trade shows and the formats were very costly and very time specific. This one is FREE to you and is “open 24/7”.

I am working with Louis Godin on the Virtual Trade Shows throughout Florida. He has them across the globe and I may dive into other territories in the future but for now, I am focused on personal relationships and helping the BEST of the BEST to get their marketing message on line with a group of professionals where we are endorsing one another. We are not looking for large companies with huge marketing budgets. I want to attract people who provide unique, personal service and hope that you will submit your application so we can all grow together! There is no cost so this is strictly a combined effort of small, unique services, supplies and venues to look big and attract buyers to the destination. As an example, Busch Gardens can be found in lots of places but the Clearwater Aquarium “Home of Winter from the Disney movie” is clearly small and unique. I will seek B&Bs, country clubs or special treasure spots for wedding venues as opposed to large, flagged hotels.

On each of the Registration forms (virtual Booth Space and Presenter Space) it will ask "How did you hear about this free promotion" just put my name as the referral. There will be several “applicants” who will be denied because they are not endorsed or their web presence does not clearly define their expertise. Let me know if you need assistance in building your “booth”. The more content we get into the show, the more searchable we ALL become. Also, if there is a vendor that you believe would benefit from participating in this that I may not know personally, please forward their name and email to me so I can contact them directly.

Pick the category that best describes your market Weddings, Meetings, Leisure travel and let’s draw some business to one another!

These portals will simplify registration … find and click on the big red box at the top that says Exhibitor Booth Registration … REMEMBER, when asked "How did you hear about this free promotion" just put my name as the referral.
Meetings & Conventions Exhibitors include: Full and Limited Service Hotels, Meeting Facilities, Caterers, Travel, Tourism, Audio Visual, Transportation, Event Decoration & Design, Entertainment, Meeting Planners, Meeting Planning, Florists & Flowers, Corporate Gifts and MUCH more.
Weddings & Special Events … Exhibitors include: Full and Limited Service Hotels, Catering Facilities, Event Facilities, Caterers, Honeymoon Destinations, Bakery & Cakes, Event Decoration & Design, Entertainment, Wedding Planners, Florists & Flowers, Formal Wear & Gowns and much more.               
Travel & Tourism Industry Exhibitors include: Hotels, Resorts, Attractions, Transportation, Flights, Agents Resources, Cruises, Publications and MUCH more.
Virtual Exhibitor booth, show event space and sponsorship is FREE and subject to approval and placement by host/organizer.
Browse exhibitors and attend show events on your schedule in the comfort of your home or office 24/7. Each virtual trade show showcases exhibitor booths which includes Introduction and links to FaceBook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Web Sites, Blogs, PR, Testimonials, *Videos, *Presentations, *Seminars (*ie. Show Events) and offers contact by EMail, Live Chat, Phone, Directions and more. GET TO KNOW EACH LOCAL EXHIBITOR VIRTUALLY.

A great article from MPI just popped into my screen … so appropriate! WORK TOGETHER OR FAIL ALONE Keynote Jonah Lehrer: The days of individual problem solvers are over. It's a new time: collaboration and connections are tantamount to your survival. >>

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Tips & Tricks

Sometimes you just want a helpful tip that has nothing to do with your job so here you go:

Baking Soda Uses

Baking soda is a chemical compound that appears as a fine powder. It releases bubbles of carbon dioxide when it interacts with an acid and a liquid. It's most commonly used in baking, where it acts as a leavening agent.  
1. Use it as an antacid.
2. Use it as underarm deodorant by applying it with a powder puff.
3. Mix half a teaspoon with peroxide paste and use it as toothpaste.
4. Use it as a face and body scrub.
5. Add a cup to bathwater to soften your skin.
6. Relieve skin itch from insect bites and pain from sunburn.
7. Remove strong odors from your hands by rubbing them with baking soda and water.
8. Put two tablespoons in your baby’s bathwater to help relieve diaper rash.
9. Apply it on rashes, insect bites, and poison ivy irritations.
10. Take a baking soda bath to relieve skin irritations.
11. Heartburn? Take a teaspoon of baking soda mixed with one-half glass of water.
12. Freshen your mouth by gargling half a teaspoon of baking soda mixed water.
13. Relieve canker sore pain by using it as mouthwash.
14. Use it to relieve bee stings.
15. Use it to relieve windburns.
16. Apply it on jellyfish sting to draw out the venom.
17. Unblock stuffy nose by adding a teaspoon of baking soda to your vaporizer.
In the Home
18. Keep cut flowers fresh longer by adding a teaspoon to the water in the vase.
19. Put out small fires on rugs, upholstery, clothing, and wood.
20. Put an open container of baking soda in the fridge to absorb the odors.
21. Sprinkle it on your ashtrays to reduce bad odor and prevent smoldering.
22. Sprinkle it on your slippers, boots, shoes, and socks to eliminate foul odor.
23. Turn baking soda into modeling clay by combining it with one and 1/4 cups of water and one cup of cornstarch.
24. After feeding your baby, wipe his shirt with a moist cloth sprinkled with baking soda to remove the odor.
25. Wipe your windshield with it to repel rain.
26. Improve the smell of dishrags by soaking them in baking soda and water.
27. Suck it in with your vacuum cleaner to remove the odor.
28. Freshen the air by mixing baking soda with your favorite perfumed bath salts. Put the mixture in small sachet bags.
29. Restore stiff brushes by boiling them in a solution of 1/2 gallon of water, 1/4 cup of vinegar, and a cup of baking soda.
30. Put it under sinks and along basement windows to repel cockroaches and ants.
31. Scatter baking soda around flowerbeds to prevent rabbits from eating your veggies.
32. Sweeten your tomatoes by sprinkling baking soda on the soil around your tomato plants.
33. Sprinkle it onto your cat or bunny’s litter box to absorb the bad odor.
34. Sprinkle it on your pet’s comb or brush to deodorize their fur and skin.
In Cooking
35. Use it as a substitute for baking powder by mixing with it with cream of tartar or vinegar.
36. Wash fruits and vegetables with it.
37. When boiling a chicken, add a teaspoon of baking soda to the water. Feathers will come off easier, and the flesh will be clean and white.
38. Soak dried beans to a baking soda solution to make them more digestible.
39. Remove the distinctive taste of wild game by soaking it in a baking soda solution.
40. Make a sports drink by mixing it with boiled water, salt, and Kool-Aid.
41. Remove the fishy smell from your fillets by soaking the raw fish in a baking soda solution for an hour inside the fridge.
42. Make fluffier omelets by adding half a teaspoon of baking soda for every three eggs used.
43. Reduce the acid content of your tomato-based recipes by sprinkling them with a pinch of baking soda.
Cleaning Purposes
44. Add a cup to the toilet, leave it for an hour, and then flush. It will clean the toilet and absorb the odor.
45. Use it to scrub sinks, showers, plastic and porcelain tubs
46. Spray it on walls, mirrors, and countertops.
47. Add a spoonful to your dishwasher to make scrubbing dishes easier.
48. Remove grease from pots and pans.
49. Dry clean carpets and upholstered furniture by sprinkling baking soda over the fabric and gently brushing it. Leave it for an hour or overnight, then vacuum.
50. Boost your laundry detergent’s cleaning power by sprinkling a handful on dirty clothes.
51. Combine it with water to make a paste for polishing stainless steel and chrome.
52. Remove scratches and crayon marks from vinyl floors and walls.
53. Clean your shoes with it.
54. Clean garbage cans with it.
55. Use it to wash diapers.
56. Clean the fridge with it.
57. Soak brushes and combs in a baking soda solution.
58. Mix it with water to wash food and drink containers.
59. Put three tablespoons of baking soda to a quart of warm water, then use the mixture to wash marble-topped furniture.
60. Absorb it with a damp sponge, then clean Formica countertops with the sponge.
61. Use it to get rid of stale odors from cooling containers and thermos bottles.
62. Run your coffee maker with a baking soda solution, then rinse.
63. Combine with hot water to clean baby bottles.
64. Sprinkle it on BBQ grills, then rinse it off.
65. Scatter it on your greasy garage floor, scrub the floor, and rinse.
66. Remove burned-on food from a pan by soaking it in a baking soda solution for 10 minutes before washing.
67. Clean your ashtrays with a baking soda solution.
68. Keep your drains clean by putting four tablespoons of baking soda in them each week. Flush it down with hot water.
69. Clean your shower curtains by soaking them in baking soda and water.
70. Put it on a small brush to rub canvas handbags clean.
71. Use it to remove melted plastic bread wrapper from a toaster. Sprinkle baking soda on a damp rag, then use the rag to clean the toaster.
72. Use it to clean your retainers and dentures.
73. Make a thick paste of baking soda and water, and used it to scrub enameled cast iron and stainless steel.
74. Mix four tablespoons of baking soda with a quart of warm water, and use it to clean the inside part of an oven.
75. Use it to unclog gas stoves.
The most amazing thing about baking soda is that it’s very cheap. You can do all these things for a very small cost. Baking soda is truly a miracle product, whether it’s used for baking or not.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Trade Show Tips

There are several other considerations in putting together a tradeshow and know that if you don't do it right the first time, it is doubtful you will be asked to do it again.

You will need to hire a decorator if you plan to do booths with pipe & drape ... They can also supply registration kiosks, internet kiosks, signage for the entry and individual exhibit booths, schematics for maps that you may have on a foam board sign or a printed program guide to locate a particular vendor. Table top exhibits may be done through the venue but you still have lots of details to prepare.

You need someone to send out exhibitor packets that detail set up and tear down times, exhibitor entrances and registration, optional goods and services available along with price lists, shipping, receiving, and storage policies and procedures, exhibitor contracts and a fee collection process. Typically a trade show booth comes with a 6’ skirted table, 2 chairs and a waste basket. If you are at a hotel, carpet is generally not a concern but convention centers with tile or concrete floors will require carpet at least in the aisles to prevent slips and falls … but you still need event insurance. Ceiling heights, dock space and elevator load factors may all be areas of concern that need to go on your checklist. Parking for vendors and participants is another detail that needs to be reviewed as there may be the need for box trucks near the loading docks and there needs to be ample parking for drive in participants. You may need additional staff to assist in this area. Trash disposal is another consideration that needs to be discussed as you can incur large fees for dumpsters.

·         Will there be a need for internet or electrical?

o   If so, what is the fee and who is providing the service?

o   Does this require special placement?

·         Is there a lead retrieval mechanism available?

·         How many exhibitor badges are included with each booth / display?

·         Are you working with any union contractors?

·         Are any special licenses or insurance required?

·         Who is responsible for negotiating, reviewing and signing the contract with the venue?

·         Can an exhibitor supply food and beverage?

·          Vendors placement is critical

o   Do not have competitors across the aisle or next to one another.

o   Booth sizes may vary and you need to create proper flow

o   Many will have requests to be closest to the entry or near a food/beverage or entertainment area.

·         Will there be announcements and drawings for prizes?

·         How will you market the event and sell tickets?

Trade shows can be great revenue generators for associations and special interest groups. Be sure to budget properly for all necessary staff, supplies and equipment, a good communication system, security and insurance. Be prepared for lots of vendor questions that may be in the exhibitor packet that they do not abide by and know that the cost of the tradeshow is much more than the venue and tables. Engage an experienced meeting planner to assist in all the coordination.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Virtual and Hybrid Meetings

It is always exciting to be interviewed for a major industry publication. I encourage everyone to put this and public speaking on the top of their list of goals for the year if you are looking to grow your business. I had to share the opportunity with my client since I could not have enjoyed this experience without him AND his industry will play a key role in the success of all the styles of live streaming production for meetings. I will let you read the story in the fashion that the seasoned journalist writes. Barbara Palmer was a delight in her interviewing skill and the passion and professionalism she brought to each conversation. Enjoy the treat!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Virtual Meetings

The topic of Virtual Meetings is sizzling! Meeting professionals play a vital role in orchestrating the details. You will be hearing more about this component and how it is changing the way we meet.
Even the Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association has experienced impressive results by adding a virtual component to their first hybrid event.
Industry: Association
Location: McLean, VA
September 2011Results -
Digital Extension:
• 279 Registrants
• 228 Attendees
• 82% Attendance Rate
• 818 Unique Views of Live Session Content
• 97% enjoyed participating in HSMAI’s MEET On first digital extension
• 59% of digiatl attendees are more inclined to attend HSMAI’s MEET in person the next year
Here are several other articles you may find interesting. A2Z Meetings & Events would enjoy putting all the details together when you decide to incorporate this technology.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Name That Hotel ~ Venue 7 ~ Results September 7

This exquisite venue is elegant and very memorable.

Venue 6 ~ The Longboat Key Club and Resort

Recognized among the top 1% of group meeting venues in the U.S. by Successful Meetings Magazine, our Fourth consecutive Pinnacle Award, The Longboat Key Club and Resort offers flexible meeting space for executive retreats and small groups ranging in size from 10 ~ 150 attendees. What makes our AAA Four Diamond Florida Resort the perfect place? Some say it’s because Golf Digest names us one of the ”Best Places to Play” or because the USTA gave us and “Outstanding Facilities Award” for our new Tennis Gardens. Others insist it’s our luxurious 9000 square foot Island House Spa, our six unique restaurants and our exclusive private white sand beach. All 218 suites are newly renovated with private balconies offering spectacular views of the beach, bay and golf course. So when planning a meeting, you just need to remember ~ it’s all here. And it’s all yours.