Promo Marketing Kicks Off Sixth Year of Power Meetings
Promo Marketing launched another year of its Power Meetings in San Diego this month.
These one-on-one, 20-minute meetings build relationships between distributors and suppliers over the course of two to three days. The event also includes networking events at off-site locations. In San Diego, attendees attended meetings at the Hyatt Regency Mission Bay Spa and Marina, and traveled to Coaster Terrace, an outdoor event space overlooking the Pacific Ocean, and Stone Brewing World Bistro and Garden at Liberty Station. The Power Meetings, which debuted in 2012, will continue to connect industry stakeholders in beautiful settings, like San Juan, Puerto Rico; Charleston, S.C.; and Scottsdale, Ariz., throughout the year.
“Building strong relationships is a key component in this industry and that is why I believe Power Meetings are so successful,” Stacey McConnell, MAS, marketing and events director for Promo Marketing said. “Providing a space where top distributors can share specific client information with the supplier without interruption or distraction is what helps develop that foundation for a great partnership.”
Vastly different than the traditional industry trade shows, distributor attendees have the opportunity to meet exclusively with sponsoring suppliers. For Sandra Lutz-Rodriguez, salesperson with Barefoot Swag, Portland, Ore., that individual attention is crucial.
“I had a bag full of samples. I walked six miles a day. I don’t think I learned a whole lot because it’s so crowded and it’s hard to get that time,” she said of her last trade show experience. “To have the 20 minutes of really productive time [with each supplier] is really fabulous. I call it ‘speed dating with suppliers,’ and it’s phenomenal. I may not know anything about you, but I get to learn something.”
This format has been catching on across the industry. When Raining Rose Inc. wanted to drive more sales, it looked to Power Meetings. That face time with distributors provides a lot of value, Nate Robson, director of promotional products at Raining Rose Inc., Cedar Rapids, Iowa, said.
“You can do a brief introduction of your company, find out a little more about them, but really it gives you enough time to explore where you can add value, and where we can partner and work together,” he said. “A lot of times you’re just hitting the tip of the iceberg, but it’s that launching point you need to take the next steps to start building and fostering that relationship that’s going to continue to be ongoing.”
Some suppliers, like Paramount Apparel International Inc., Bourbon, Mo., which has been a part of Power Meetings from the very beginning, have had so much success at Power Meetings that they have scaled back their presence at trade shows.
“After joining Power Meeting, we started this platform across the board,” Joey Knight, assistant division director at Paramount Apparel International Inc., said. “We slowly started phasing out normal trade shows and started focusing only on this type of stuff. … We actually took a year off and did absolutely no trade shows in 2016. Then, this year, we decided to do very minimal presence at Vegas, Orlando and Dallas. And I think we did 10 foot [booths] at each one, which, from the days that we used to 40, 50 foot, it was quite a downsize.”
But even first-time attendee Mike Button, senior account executive at Tricor Brand Communications, Portland, Ore., was in awe of all he could accomplish at a Power Meeting. After learning about the event at Promo Marketing’s booth at PPAI Expo, he agreed to give it a shot but remained extremely hesitant and wondered whether the trip would be worth his time. That mindset quickly changed, and he raved about the relationships he had built with suppliers whose booths he would have never thought to stop by at a trade show.
“This is what I was looking for, but I was not expecting that,” Button, a 29-year veteran in the industry, said. “So my expectations of this came from not knowing what to do but still going ‘OK, it’s just going to be a big trade show.’ [My expectations] went from medium-low to off the charts. And that’s where I’m at right now. I‘m so glad I came to this thing.”
2017 Power Meetings
April 19 to 21
Power House for distributors with $1.5 million or more in sales
San Juan, Puerto Rico
May 15 to 18
Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
June 12 to 14
AIMastermind members only
June 28 to 30
Co-located with PPAI’s Women’s Leadership Conference
Aug. 15 to 17
Co-located with PPAI’s North American Leadership Conference
Sept. 10 to 13
Oct. 1 to 4
Palm Springs, Calif.
Oct. 16 to 18
AIMastermind members only