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Keeping your co-workers, employees, and team members motivated can sometimes be an uphill battle. Instead of reaching for a cryptex to crack the motivation code, open "Multipliers," recommended by Lisa Lawley, CTSM, CME, event-marketing manager at Cisco Systems Inc. It describes two types of leaders: the "diminisher" and the "multiplier." The diminisher is the idea killer, energy zapper, and demotivator. The multiplier, on the other hand, leads in such a way to get the most out of people, motivating them to push themselves to accomplish greater things. And that motivation can help keep your team on track.

What part of "Multipliers" speaks to you as an event-marketing manager?

When I heard about this book, I was right in the middle of planning a show with the most difficult internal client I had ever worked with. I realized the reason this was so hard and so draining was that this client was a textbook diminisher. The experience of attempting to plan a trade show with someone that sucked the life right out of the conference room forced me to look at my own personal style of leadership, and that's when I decided that I wanted to be sure I was never a diminisher on any conceivable level.

What makes you believe exhibit managers will benefit from reading this book?

Since exhibit managers lead the exhibit-planning process, we need to be able to build teams in which everyone feels safe and secure enough to offer up their own ideas and solutions, and does their part to make all of our events successful. I learned that being a diminisher can actually make things harder for you as the leader. The leadership skills in this book are ones that anyone on any level can learn.

How have you applied what you've learned from the book to your day-to-day work?

Since this is a relatively new read for me, I'm still trying to incorporate what I've learned into my daily work life. But I truly believe that with practice, the skills outlined in the book will become second nature for me, and will eventually lead to better exhibit planning.

Lisa Lawley, CTSM, CME, event-marketing manager, Cisco Systems Inc.

War in the Boardroom

Holly Seese, exhibit manager at Celanese Corp., added "War in the Boardroom" to the reading list because "it exposes the real cause of tension between the marketing and management functions in a company." She explains that the underlying premise is that management executives are typically verbal, logical, and analytical. In other words, they are left-brain thinkers. Marketing professionals, on the other hand, are visual, intuitive, and holistic, i.e., right-brain thinkers. This book explains how you can bridge the pervasive communication gap between these two very different types of thinkers.

How did you find "War in the Boardroom"?

It was a present from the owner of my design agency - maybe she was hinting something. She even had one of the authors autograph the book for me. She found it to be extremely valuable in dealing with her clients, especially those in management positions.

What do you think is the book's main takeaway?

The subject matter discussed in chapter two sums it up for me - management concentrates on the product; marketing concentrates
on the brand. Brand management is critical to the growth of most companies, and when that important task is forsaken, the company often falters.

If you had to sell someone on this book, what would you say to them?

The book is full of real-world examples of failed management and marketing. There are many good examples from the automotive industry, such as the rapid degeneration of General Motors from a venerable powerhouse into bankruptcy. It all comes down to the brand and what they did to it.

How does what you've learned from the book help your career as well as your professional relationships?

It helps me to translate my thoughts from right-brain thinking into left-brain verbal communication so that others in my company can better understand my marketing presentations. I also find myself becoming a bit too analytical at times, and this book helps me to recognize that fact when I'm dealing with the creatives at my ad agency or exhibit house.

Holly Seese, exhibit manager,
Celanese Corp.

How to Love the Recession!

The title of this book, "How to Love the Recession" says it all. Steven Marchese, CTSM, events manager, corporate communications at Fujifilm Medical Systems USA Inc., added it to the list because it's written specifically for exhibit managers and companies that want to increase sales and develop market share in the current economic climate. The book contains simple principles that can be used to increase lead generation at a trade show.

Where did you first hear about this book?

Steve Underation was developing material for this book during his session at EXHIBITOR2009, titled, "How to Keep Your Best Leads Out of the Trash and Convert them to Customers." After sitting through his session, I knew I needed to read this book.

After reading the book, do you have a favorite chapter?

I liked the bonus chapter, called "How to Ethically Steal Even More Customers in the Recovery." In it, the author describes six additional lead-generation tactics, including "sell something different." He references the brilliant way in which Amazon.com marketed the Kindle by going to its already loyal customer base and simply introducing something that was different than what it typically offers, yet still relevant to its core business.

OK, so that worked for Amazon.com. But how do the principles discussed in the book apply to corporate exhibit managers?

The book contains simple principles that you can use to advance your own trade show program. One of my favorite tips is "getting a small sale now leads to bigger sales later." Basically, selling a smaller, less expensive item to a prospect on the show floor shifts your relationship with that prospect, turning them into your customer, which in turn results in a new psychological dynamic and creates the potential for larger and additional sales in the
future. Another important tip is to invest in an automated lead-management system, which will automate your post-show communication, removing leads from the salesperson's trash and ensuring multiple touch points over weeks, months, and even years.

Steven Marchese, CTSM, events manager, corporate communications, Fujifilm Medical Systems USA Inc.

The Experience Economy

How do you help your company thrive during times of economic turmoil? If that's the million-dollar question you're facing, then "The Experience Economy" might have some answers. Recommended by Kathy Granger, director of exhibition marketing at Thomson Reuters Legal, the book discusses the emergence of a new economic era, which the authors dub "the experience economy." In order to succeed in this new era, companies have to create rich, compelling, and memorable experiences for clients and prospects in order to set themselves apart from the competition.

Who should read this book?

Trade show and event managers are in the business of staging experiences. Reading this book gives you the opportunity to really think about the experiences you are creating. Can you make them richer? Or maybe even more compelling? It provides the necessary tools to take your event to the next level.

How can exhibit managers apply the information in this book to create more memorable experiences?

Chapter two discusses the importance of spending time exploring what aspects of the experiential framework will most enhance the particular experience you wish to stage. The authors believe the deepest and most meaningful experiences will contain elements from the following four realms: entertainment (individuals are passively absorbing information through their senses), educational (individuals are actively participating), escapist (individuals are immersed and become part of the experience), and aesthetic (individuals are surrounded by an experience but do not impact the environment).

How have you applied what you learned from this book?

While the book was not written specifically for event marketers, a number of components were easy to translate to my job. In fact, my company won a Sizzle Award in 2009 for our integrated program at the American Association of Law Libraries Annual Meeting and Conference. I would attribute the success of that award-winning exhibit to my team's ability to create a memorable experience for our customers.

Kathy Granger, director of exhibition marketing, Thomson Reuters Legal
How to Get the Most Out of Trade Shows

If trade show marketing 101 had a textbook, this would be it. From basic exhibiting concepts to more complex topics such as show selection and post-show follow-up, "How to Get the Most Out of Trade Shows," suggested by Lucy Albert, CTSM, exhibit coordinator at Space Telescope Science Institute, serves as a reference for rookies and veterans alike. Now more than ever, exhibit managers are under pressure to prove ROI and justify their programs, and this book will help show you how to make trade show investments worthwhile.

Where did you first hear about the book?

This little book is a gem of a find. I actually found it in the bookstore during EXHIBITOR2007, and purchased it on the spot. I keep it on my desk at work and reference it all the time.

Is there a chapter that you found particularly relevant?

I dog-eared the chapter on working with staff. Many of the - how do I put this kindly - very geeky staffers in my science-conference booths are extremely shy and timid, and applying the concepts I learned in that chapter, such as convincing booth staffers it was OK to initiate a conversation with attendees, helped put my people at ease. I was able to help them feel more comfortable engaging with attendees and working a booth, even though they were admittedly way out of their comfort zone.

What makes this book a good addition to the 2010 Summer Reading List?
This book presents all the basics of trade show marketing in a succinct and pleasant way. It has numerous takeaways and serves as a reliable guidebook. And I find that its content is pretty much timeless and easy to apply regardless of your industry. After all, it helped me turn geeky science nerds into gracious social butterflies.

Do you think this book has helped you become a better exhibit manager?
I would say it has. I reference it quite a bit. It's a good compilation of the content from all of my CTSM classes in an easy-to-read and easy-to-apply format. Plus, it's a lot lighter than hauling around all of my CTSM notebooks.

Lucy Albert, CTSM, exhibit coordinator, Space Telescope Science Institute

The Tipping Point

Ever wonder why some trends take hold and others fall by the wayside? "The Tipping Point," added to the list by Mara Weber, events and users group director for Honeywell Process Solutions, sheds light on the subject. It explores behavioral-psychology tenets and touches on how emotions and intellect can be persuaded to get people to behave a certain way, ultimately influencing purchasing habits. The book explains that in order to harness the power to influence people, you need to have the following: contagiousness, an understanding that little causes can have big effects, and the knowledge that change can happen in a moment.

If you had to relay one key takeaway from "The Tipping Point" to our readers, what would it be?

The author identifies three different types of people that have the power to influence your brand or product: connectors (energetic and relationship oriented), mavens (teachers), and salespeople (charming and persuasive). If you truly understand how to communicate the right message to these three types of people, you can support your cause and build brand awareness. As exhibit marketers, we have a tendency to market to the broader "target audience," forgetting that there are segments within that audience that need specific, targeted messaging.

So how does the book teach exhibit managers to target a specific audience?

Tenets of the book are timeless and transcend all kinds of tactics within the marketing-communications mix. Marketers use word-of-mouth, and influencers help promote brand awareness and the products and services companies have to offer. And if you understand the power of the influencer, you can exploit it to further your event- and exhibit-marketing efforts.

Has this book helped you become better at your job?

Yes. I've been able to use what I've learned and apply it to our pre-show marketing, experiential marketing, and on-site engagement tactics. I've also learned that using the correct strategy and the right personalities to deliver key messages or engage with attendees ensures a more successful end result.

Mara Weber, events and users group director, Honeywell Process Solutions

The Event-Marketing Handbook

Wish that event marketing came with a manual? Well it does, and "The Event-Marketing Handbook" is it. A complete guide to the event-planning process, this book takes you from start to finish, which is why Kerry Talbot, director of trade show and event marketing for Quintiles Transnational, added it to the list. According to her, it's a great introduction to the planning process, and it also serves as an excellent refresher to help you improve and update your current processes.

What keeps this book on your desk year after year?

I keep the book around because of all the templates. They're a real time-saver and can be used as is, or you can customize them to meet your specific event needs. Having every list, spreadsheet, form, and template an event planner needs, all in one place, is a huge help. It's like having an instruction manual for event marketing.

Why are spreadsheets and templates such a huge part of your planning process?

I'm a big list person, and I think that just comes with the territory. You kind of have to write everything down and make checklists, or you're bound to forget some tiny detail that will likely have a huge impact on your event or exhibit program. I think everyone in event- and exhibit-marketing should own this book. Having this book and using the templates is like having insurance that you've done everything you possibly can do to have a successful event. After that, it's up to the event gods.

So how did you find this event-marketing bible?

I picked it up at a conference a few years ago. So it's not new, but I believe it's still timeless and relevant for just about everyone in our industry.

What lessons have you learned from "The Event-Marketing Handbook"?

I've been able to improve my own planning documents, which makes my planning process more efficient and, I think, more effective. It's all about the checklists. Plus, the information can be tailored to any size event. It's kind of like a formula for success that gives you all the planning tools you could possibly need.

Kerry Talbot, director of trade show and event marketing for Quintiles Transnational
Follow the Yellow Brick Road

What do Dorothy, the Tin Man, Scarecrow, and the Cowardly Lion have in common with Jack Welch, Oprah Winfrey, and Richard Branson? Recommended by Adam Polaszewski, trade show and events manager for CareerBuilder.com, "Follow the Yellow Brick Road" answers that question and more. The author, Dr. Myra White, draws comparisons between the seemingly kooky cast of characters from "The Wizard of Oz" and political icons, business leaders, and entertainment superstars. The reason? She insists that these movers and shakers have the same strengths and weaknesses as everyone else - the trick is knowing how to leverage outside resources to make yourself successful.

What does "The Wizard of Oz" have to do with trade show marketing?

Dr. White explains that the characters from the movie were all hoping to get a gift from the Wizard that would ultimately help them become more successful. And though they encountered challenges along the way, they were able to overcome those challenges and get what they wanted. OK, so we don't have to deal with flying monkeys, but we still encounter challenges on the road to completing a project, advancing our careers, and even striving to meet personal goals.

How can "Follow the Yellow Brick Road" help exhibit managers?
It doesn't really matter what you do, learning how to turn your weaknesses into strengths is a valuable skill. For example, this book helped motivate me to enter EXHIBITOR's All-Star Awards competition, and I won. I also became a finalist for the Southern New Hampshire Global MBA program, and
a finalist in the 2010 Ex Awards. And I can attribute those achievements directly to the things I learned through reading this book.

Why do you think other exhibit managers will enjoy reading this book?

I feel like anyone who has ever seen "The Wizard of Oz" will understand the parallels Dr. White draws between those characters and the world's so-called superstars. Plus, I think there are a lot of valuable takeaways in this book.

Adam Polaszewski, trade show and
events manager, CareerBuilder.com

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