Sorry but you don’t represent me
Sometimes some poor fellow wonders into the firing line: he just happens to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Unfortunately this time it is The Association for Conferences and Events. If you haven’t come across them they are a British representative / membership body which has been in existence some 40 years. The ACE represents the dynamic, multi-disciplined world that we all work in. My first suggestion to you is to follow the link to their website.
So what did you think? Does this represent your industry? If you weren’t an event organiser and you landed on this site would you think that event organisers understood the finer points of marketing and sales? Would you consider it a vital part of our make-up that we always consider the ‘experience’ as important and put our customers at the heart of our processes? And finally would you attend any of their events? Oh yes, and here’s their Twitter page. Two Tweets and less than 50 followers or following. I don’t think I need say any more about their grasp of probably the most important thing to happen to events since the internet:
Here is another picture, this time of their exhibition stand at Confex, which is one of the leading exhibitions for the UK event industry. Inspiring isn’t it? I reckon they got the stand for free for offering some support. But it’s better to have no stand than to have a stand that looks like this! Does this shout out to you ‘we know about events’ or ‘we understand, lead and challenge’. Or does is give out a quite different message?
I often earwig and occasionally comment on industry debates which focus around trying to establish events as a vital part of a business. I also hear countless industry professionals bemoaning the fact they don’t have much stock within their own organisation. I even had one client, an Event Manager for a large UK company, who the CEO referred to as ‘Dearie’ and assumed she was in charge of nothing more important than bags and badges. This is a shocking state of affairs. Well run events within any sizable business can showcase your product and service better than any other form of marketing or communication. We are vital to a lot of businesses.
The final bullet for ACE as they stand quivering against the wall is what they offer you for £80 a year membership fee? My comments are in brackets.
Here are just some of the growing benefits…
• 1 year subscription from the date you sign-up (a benefit of membership is membership?)
• Free entry in our directory and the ability to search for new suppliers (not appropriate for organisers and doesn’t the internet do that? Besides having searched through it there are probably less than 40 members listed)
• Free submission of your news to our site (why would this be of interest to an organiser? It isn’t)
• Free posting of your events to our online calendar (again, where is the value in this? This is possible the least targeted and visited events listing on the internet)
Don’t wait, just click Subscribe now to begin the process! (I think I will wait)
Pick on someone your own size!
I realise I am being a bit unfair picking ACE out, it could have been any aimless events body that got in the line of fire but I needed an example to emphasise the point. We have too many bodies in the Events industry and too few deliver any true value. The face we often display to other industries is a tired one and it’s no wonder that our profession is held in the low regard that it is. Please stop paying subscriptions to bodies that don’t deliver any true value. Demand more. It’s the only way to try to help our industry find a true representative voice, one that has clarity, power and purpose.
And of course if ACE or any other events body repsond I will happily post their comment.