Marketing Genius from Maple Creative


Marketing tips, observations & philosophy, plus a few rants and random musings - from those who practice, preach and teach marketing, research, advertising, public relations and business strategy.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

A to Z of Marketing: Q is for Quell

If you’ve noticed the Marketing Genius blog has been surprisingly quiet lately, it’s because Skip and I have been attending the first annual Create West Virginia conference all week. This event brought together a mixed bag of the state’s leaders for an insightful planning session on how to attract and retain New Economy jobs in our region. It was an amazing, productive experience and I encourage you to see for yourself at

There’s no doubt that the Create West Virginia conference was a smashing success. But if you rewind the tape about six weeks, here’s what you’d find:

> A nervous planning committee that needed at least 200 registrants, but only had 60.
> A five-figure budget deficient.
> A few secondary team members voting to stop work altogether for fear of going down with a sinking ship.

How do you overcome negative numbers? As any seasoned event planner will attest, you dig in, you target, you expand your reach, you mail, you call and, yes, you physically get in your car and go tell people why they need to attend. It takes leadership, grit, tenacity, faith, and a lot of shoe leather to make it happen – but it can be done.

On the other hand, it is far easier to sit in the corner and poo-poo the effort, so that’s what most people do. Don’t be one of them. Quell the pessimism. Quell the inherent voice that says, “This will never work”, “We’ve never done it that way”, and so on.

If you find yourself becoming a CAVE person (i.e. a Citizen Against Virtually Everything), realize that you are holding back your team, then make a vow to find the germ of greatness in every “bad” idea. Build on that until it becomes something you can rally around.

Finally, work like hell.

And that’s exactly what the planning committee of the Create West Virginia Conference did - which is why they had well over 200 attendees at their event - and why they are already planning for next year.

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