The blog has a singular focus this week. GlassBuild America. Now some of you may be tiring if me constantly propping this event, but I do it because it needs done and its worth it for everyone involved. So please read on, and see where I am coming from. Before I start, full disclosure, I do work for and get paid by the National Glass Association and the majority of my work is on GlassBuild. So I am biased, but that said, I do believe I have a compelling story to tell.
I have attended GlassBuild (or also known as the NGA Show) basically every year since 1998. There’s no doubt the event has changed but so has our industry. Once upon a time I was even critical of the show, making fun of it for trying to evolve. (Which I now know was what good companies attempt to do; me being immature, stupid and thinking I was bullet-proof missed that) When I joined on to help at GlassBuild I figured I’d have no problems just jumping in, after all I (with a few others) built the GANA BEC to more than 800 people, so I handled big crowds right? Nope. It didn’t dawn on me until I really got into it how huge and how intense GlassBuild really is. The size and scope of GlassBuild made BEC look like a pre school play date. (The team that truly puts this show together is absolutely unreal. A handful of the hardest working people I have ever been around)
So you are probably now wondering where I am going with this… well its simple, this year the show is tracking to have an amazing performance, great exhibits and best attendance in a long time. I just want everyone to be a part of it. I want it to be the BEST EVER. I want it to be great for the exhibitors and sponsors who step up and show. And I wanted to throw it out to those on the fence, why they shouldn’t miss it.
First and foremost this is THE BIGGEST event in our industry. By far. Not even close. Combine every other event (and yes many are good ones too) and you won’t even get to a third of the people that attend GlassBuild or the education or networking you can make happen. I laugh when people say “nobody is there” because its plainly not true. Every major player either has a booth or a sponsorship or at worst walks the floor (or some cases has a party off site at the same time, though to me having a party without a booth makes no sense- that’s another story for another time) so to say no one is there is pure folly.
To me it’s the products that make it, every year new, ground breaking and innovative products fill the floor and smart participants lap it up and run with it. They are either diversifying their business or finding a new channel to deal with. Making better deals, getting better terms, finding new sources. At the end of the day, GlassBuild and its amazing exhibitors make people’s BUSINESSES BETTER. I even had one exhibitor ask me to chill out on the push to find more exhibitors because he liked he didn’t have all of his competitors on the floor.
The networking is 2nd to none, from the opening night cocktail party to all of the other events, more can be accomplished in 3 days at GlassBuild than 3 months on the road and hours surfing websites.
What else will you miss aside from your competitors getting a massive step up and chance to network yourself and your business? You’ll miss the educational opportunities, from the great panel at the Glazing Executives Forum (featuring top people like Dick Beuke of PPG, Mike Turner of YKK, Jim Miller of View, and Dr. Jeff Meyer of White Bear) to an insanely good marketing seminar by Rich Porayko to one of the most exciting panels we’ve had in years on the growth and ascent of decorative printing on glass. (Believe me, digital printing on glass is extremely popular). Plus this year, the popular floor demonstrations have expanded allowing looks into several other very interesting avenues.
It’s the one place to find product lines like truck racks, storefronts, sealants, hardware, software, dynamics, handrails, screens, windows and so much more. (And entire section devoted to and loaded with INNOVATION!) And yes machinery is all over the floor with things more amazing this year than ever before. The entire industry, ALL IN ONE PLACE. And yes that range of products sometimes works against the show, because GlassBuild caters to so many, the focus is far from narrow, but when you have the biggest event around, you tend to be broad. (Look at AIA as an example, or an electronic show like CES, they all cover many many categories, not just one audience, so yes part of the huge show is not in your exact segment… yet)
So there ya go… I ranted enough… if you want to be in the minority who misses the show, that’s your call. But I think you’d be making a big mistake…. And I say that with years of experience making mistakes including back when I totally misunderstood how great this event and its people are.
Last, an extra incentive to sign up if you have not yet, a great opportunity to advance your own brand/company. One person will be chosen at random from everyone who registers this week. The winner will get a free video promotion from me for his or her organization. I will come to your location and/or jobsite and profile your company and shoot/edit/produce a high-end corporate video for use on youtube and your personal website. (or however you see fit) No strings attached- just my donation to the show effort, and you get a chance to advance your brand image at my expense. The amazing registration staff at GlassBuild America will randomly choose the one winner and I’ll make arrangements to get shooting…. And we’ll see you and the rest of the industry at the show! So click here to register now...
LINKS of the WEEK
-- The abuse of unpaid interns has really gone big this week. From the Facebook debacle to this incredible story. Unreal.
-- Interesting article on the evolution of the smartphone. Speaking of that… I’ll be getting rid of my beloved Blackberry soon. That makes me sad.
-- Just incredible, heart wrenching story here. How a little girl suffering from massive seizures may be now headed in the right direction thanks to medical marijuana. Wow.
VIDEO of the WEEK
This is really cool… though no way I would do it being a wimp… but riding a bike up a ramp and flying into a lake… man it looks neat.