Tips of the trade:
time flies when you’re having work

Are you waiting too long to begin this year’s sales meeting and trade show planning? Preparing for these events takes time. Don’t stress your team or your budgets with a huge rush in the 11th hour.

Although it’s crucial to everyday work, only 18% of people have a dedicated time management system, according to a study by the Development Academy. This lack of organization can cost time and money.

Time management is an ongoing issue for most teams but it’s something that can be optimized! Let your team, and your reputation, shine by embracing the agency with the time and tools needed to properly plan and develop tactics for your events.

Annual sales meetings are a big deal

Annual sales meetings are a great way for marketing/sales teams to get fired up and share individual and collective team results, strategies, and experiences. Sales meetings are an important venue to:

Present individual, team, and company success

Boost morale and generate excitement

Establish expectations and goals

Encourage collaboration between teams

Since these meetings are so important, they often come with large budgets and high expectations. Companies want these events to be lively and really build momentum among employees. This means that many tactics are employed and can range from simple posters, to developed apps, or even live performances.

Clay Daniells,
CEO of QooQoo

“I have worked on some pretty massive undertakings for sales meetings in my time. From planning promotional videos, to developing meeting themes, to huge collaboration exercises involving hundreds. They are amazing experiences if you do it right.”

Collaboration is key

Developing impactful, motivating, and memorable creative for these events is a mass effort. Brainstorming and planning, and getting an entire team’s input, is critical. Collaboration needs to begin early.

Miro is a digital whiteboard for your team to use and share ideas. You can comment, edit, and bring your ideas to life in a fun and organized way. Miro help teams share and contribute in meaningful ways and make tactics for national sales meetings in shorter timeframes.

of Fortune 100 companies trust Miro for their collaboration needs.

While collaboration is incredibly important, one simple aspect of the process that is often overlooked is timelines.

Build realistic timelines

While you may know the date for a conference or trade show, most tactics need to be completed well in advance–months if possible. It is critical to start early and plan ahead.

Set realistic timelines and expectations for development, from theme ideation, agenda planning, communication strategies, event décor, and entertainment to production and installation. Trade show booth ideas in particular can be lengthy to ideate and produce.

Remember that projects may take longer than they first appear to—and by no fault of yours or your team.

For example, a simple printed banner usually needs files to be handed off for printing and installation 2 to 4 weeks in advance of the scheduled event. Before that, the piece may require medical, legal, regulatory, and compliance (MLRC) review, which, depending on number of review cycles, may take 2 weeks or more. Prior to that, all stakeholders must submit their comments and approvals. Then, there’s the actual concept development, writing, and design work. To avoid a last-minute rush, and possible rush charges, allow 2 to 3 months for banner development.

Top 3 timeline busters

MLRC (Medical, Legal, Review Committee): Leave plenty of time for your MLRC team! Your team might not be the only one producing materials. While you can ask for an expedited review, the amount of work being passed through the committee might prevent it.

Holiday season: Holidays at the end of the year take a huge toll on timelines. You may think November 1 to December 31 is 8 weeks, but in reality, it’s only about 5 working weeks.

Print production: Printing can be a time-consuming process, especially if you include shipping and installation. Printed assets like backlit panels or banners might be required by the venue a month in advance.

Stick to your timelines

It’s imperative to continually track timelines and critical “drop-dead” dates. Software programs like SmartSheet helps marketing teams and agency stay on track.

SmartSheet is a real-time, timeline-sharing software that maps out the entire tactic development process so the whole team can track progress and keep an eye on key dates. SmartSheet is trusted by over 80% of Fortune 500 companies, and 90% of Fortune 100 companies. Its broad functionality makes it a top choice for any type of company that needs team collaboration, intelligent workflow and automation, and streamlined process management.

Tips to staying on timeline

  • Learn from the past. Audit how long a similar project took in the past, and how your current timeline compares. Make adjustments based on previous learnings.
  • Establish regular team check-ins. Make sure every member is on track and proactively address issues. Not every meeting needs to be an hour, or even 30-minutes. If a meeting isn’t necessary, cancel it.
  • Hold work time sacred. Meetings can slow workflow. Add work blocks to your calendar for focused, noninterrupted work time. Consider designating a large, weekly “no meeting” block of time for your team.

Partner with a proactive agency

What’s your next big event? QooQoo can deliver sizzle on a schedule.

QooQoo is an independent, full-service healthcare marketing agency.

We invite you to evaluate where you are now, where you want to be, and who you need with you along the way. Contact us here.