Is deal-making compromising your corporate strategy?

Published by on April 28, 2016 8:12 am
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When is a great deal not the right deal?  When it’s not on strategy.

I’m always surprised when I hear business people talk about making a “strategic” move when they are simply taking opportunistic action. There’s no shame in taking a flyer on something that just pops up; it may be the right course of action. Go for it! But there is great danger in retrofitting your strategy to align with your actions.

If you decide, after a lot of research, that you need a pickup truck, but come home from the dealership with a convertible that was on sale, your joy will be short lived. You still can’t get your bass boat to the lake.

If you set a menu for a dinner party and ask your spouse to pick up some shrimp, you will not be happy if he shows up with beef tenderloin instead. It throws everything off – you don’t have the right ingredients, it doesn’t work for your vegetarian guests, and now you’re behind schedule.

And if your company is tempted to acquire a business that is just too good to resist – even if it takes you into a market you hadn’t previously considered – think twice. Will the purchase move the company closer to its stated goals? Or will it simply drain resources that are needed to fulfill years of planning?

It’s okay to be spontaneous. And successful businesses are always poised to jump on a shrewd, once-in-a-lifetime transaction. But let’s not kid ourselves by pretending we are acting strategically when we’re simply seizing an opportunity. Strategy is about acting against a deliberate, considered, data-based plan. It’s acting by design. When we step outside of our strategy, we need to be realistic about both our motives and the consequences of the action.

Fire sales may be good business, but they are rarely strategic. And remember—there’s no good price for the wrong thing.

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Industry opportunities abounded at IMEX Frankfurt 2016

Published by on April 27, 2016 9:57 am
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A focus on sharing knowledge and a look at the road ahead for meetings and events IMEX gathered meeting professionals from around the globe last week in Frankfurt for a key industry conference that showcased the future of meetings and events and provided numerous educational opportunities for event marketers around[...] Read More

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Pushing the AV technology boundary at NAB Show 2016

Published by on April 26, 2016 2:25 pm
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Shining a spotlight on brand experience, best practices, and big-name brands Industry pros and technology nuts alike swarmed Las Vegas last week for the 2016 NAB Show, the world’s largest electronic media show focusing on digital media from creation to consumption. Hosted by the National Association of Broadcasters, NAB Show[...] Read More

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Five Earth-friendly Event Tips for Earth Day

Published by on April 22, 2016 8:04 am
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At Freeman, we believe sustainability is everyone’s responsibility. It is our mission to make our industry greener by raising the bar on ourselves. Through initiatives large and small, every change makes a difference. So this year, on Earth Day, we would like to highlight a few simple ways you can[...] Read More

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Unless you’re Superman, you can’t be good at everything.

Published by on April 21, 2016 7:48 am
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The recent “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” movie has me thinking about superheroes — and how weakness isn’t necessarily a bad trait when it comes to teams. One of the best things about the Avengers series (both the Marvel Comics and the films) is that it reminds us that[...] Read More

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B-to-B Dream Team: Five Ideas You Can Steal Today for Your Next Brand Experience

Published by on April 19, 2016 2:13 pm
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Tips on innovation from the industry’s best and brightest, as curated by Event Marketer A version of this blog originally appeared on Marketers are constantly searching for fresh ideas to keep their brand top of mind. When it comes to brand experiences, this is doubly true — experiential marketers compete[...] Read More

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Global Meetings Industry Day: Celebrating the macro and micro impacts of brand experience

Published by on April 18, 2016 2:49 pm
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Last week, event and meeting professionals from around the world came together to celebrate and champion our industry for the inaugural Global Meetings Industry Day. More than 100 events took place on Thursday, April 14, in over 85 locations in more than 30 countries – including the Meetings Mean Business[...] Read More

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The Value of Brand Experience

Published by on April 11, 2016 8:21 pm
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On #GMID16, show why marketers should turn to experience Brand experiences continue gaining popularity as organizations recognize the need for a personal engagement with their most important audiences. It’s all about creating an authentic, meaningful connection, and providing audiences the unique and memorable interactions that will enrich their lives. Just[...] Read More

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Breaking News: Event Marketer B-to-B Dream Team Revealed

Published by on April 11, 2016 3:31 pm
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Celebrating brand experience innovators A version of this blog originally appeared on Have you heard the news? Event Marketer has revealed its B-to-B Dream Team, a celebration of the industry innovators and the best and the brightest event marketers in the business. We are proud to partner with Event Marketer on the B-to-B Dream[...] Read More

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Reach for people’s hearts, not their wallets, with a personalized brand experience

Published by on April 7, 2016 11:36 am
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What makes us do business with our favorite airline? Our preferred clothing retailer? Our ideal hotel brand? In many cases, the simple answer is service. But what does delivering good service actually mean? Personalization is what really makes a brand experience stand out to a consumer. A person’s ability to connect with your brand as an[...] Read More

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The worst thing about yourself is the best thing about yourself

Published by on April 6, 2016 10:24 am
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This is true for me and for most people I know. Our greatest weakness is what makes us great. The guy who has a hard time making decisions is really open to new ideas and encourages further discovery. The woman who has poor organizational skills and a cluttered office s[...] Read More

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New York International Auto Show: Let the Product Shine

Published by on April 5, 2016 4:29 pm
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What happens when you mix a thousand cars, hundreds of thousands of attendees, and a team of brand journalists ready to take it all in? It’s the New York International Auto Show (NYIAS), wrapping up its 10-day run this week. A truly consumer show, NYIAS intended to do one thing[...] Read More

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Engaging Trade Show Audiences with AV: Best Practices, Tips, and Tricks

Published by on March 28, 2016 10:31 am
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You don’t have to be an AV expert to achieve excellent results utilizing technology in your trade show booth. Some of the most common AV-related challenges faced by exhibitors are easily preventable. In fact, effectively incorporating technology into your exhibit can work to drive attendee traffic and engagement while also[...] Read More

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Change management: Resistance is fertile

Published by on March 24, 2016 6:42 pm
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Search Amazon for books on “change management” and you’ll get over 20,000 results. It seems everyone has theories about how to make change management work… and yet a McKinsey study suggests that only 30 percent of these efforts succeed. Companies with a good track record all work to build consensus—but[...] Read More

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How to Boost Registrations with Better Attendee Justification

Published by on March 22, 2016 10:46 am
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Discover how event marketers and show organizers are bringing the attendee justification letter back to life to increase attendance Like nearly every B2B product, a conference registration is rarely purchased on a whim—or without one or more rounds of internal approvals. With travel-related expenses under more scrutiny by management, it’s[...] Read More

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72 Hours at SXSW: Get Ready for Some Serious FOMO

Published by on March 18, 2016 12:36 pm
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Six eventprofs report back on the experience, the brands, the content, and the FLOTUS What happens when we send six event marketing professionals with diverse roles and personal interests to take in as much of SXSW as possible in a mere 72 hours? Plenty of opinions, great insights into the[...] Read More

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What’s your manifesto?

Published by on March 17, 2016 8:53 am
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Recently, while attending an event at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, I participated in a client workshop that was facilitated by our Chief Design Officer, Bruce Mau. We were talking about the value of creating manifestos to articulate what’s important to us as companies, as business leaders, and as regular[...] Read More

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Design Excellence

Published by on March 15, 2016 8:22 am
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It’s not every day that you get to invite valued clients to someplace as prestigious as the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and then let them personally experience an exhibition featuring the work of your colleague. Of course, it’s not everybody that can claim a colleague who’s been presented with a[...] Read More

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Don’t worry about the competition

Published by on March 10, 2016 11:09 am
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Some managers obsess about what the competition is doing.  The thinking is, if you stay a step ahead of the other guys, you’ll stay in front, right? Not so much. Formula 1 drivers don’t win championships by looking in the rear view mirror. They choose their own line around the[...] Read More

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The Trends Driving the Future of the Exhibitor Experience

Published by on March 8, 2016 11:00 am
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Today’s attendee has high expectations for events. Smart exhibitors know they must provide a unique experience that shows how deeply they understand the wants and needs of an audience looking for something enriching, intelligent, meaningful, and personal. On the show floor, you only get one chance to impress and engage[...] Read More

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