Blogging this from my Blackberry while heading north on Interstate 85 from Atlanta for meetings in Washington DC and New York City.
So you're reading this and wondering why would we drive from Toronto to Atlanta, to DC, to NYC and back to Toronto...about 30 hours of driving?
The answer is - we're on a client project that involved being at the largest marketing trade show of the year. We approach each engagement as if it were for our company. We're careful when spending a client's budget. So it made sense to load up a mini van and drive instead of shipping stuff.
The trade show was great and we accomplished what we set out to do despite obstacles. This brings me to the reason for this installment on this Blog - poor service.
Trade shows are hard work but a necessary component to raising awareness for a growing company in a short couple of days. A well managed show makes it so much easier. So with the rapid adoption of the Web/Blogosphere and Internet Communications tools taking business away from trade shows you'd think that show managers would know better and compete with service and value. They haven't made the connection yet. Leaving the door open to astute service oriented companies.
On the other hand, there are other businesses that have made the connection with service/value. Here is a real example.
Earlier in the day we got a flat tire. Actually a slow leak that tripped a dashboard warning light. So we took the first exit to get it fixed. This exit was for Gastonia, NC, a town bordering on Charlotte.
We had choices - a Walmart, a Tire King and a AAA Automark. Having just renewed my CAA membership (the Canadian AAA) we pulled into the AAA Automark. Even though they were busy they had our vehicle up, and found the puncture within minutes. Turns out they didn't have our tire in stock but the AAA guy (Scott Carey) found one at a local Goodyear Tire Centre and alerted them we were on our way for it.
We were back on the road in about 30 minutes from exiting the Interstate. Amazing stuff - flexibility, adpatability and empowerment by AAA and Goodyear. Simple things that a lot of businesses should learn.