The Stevie Awards Blog

FIS Wins Grand Stevie Award for Organization of the Year in 2018 American Business Awards

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Tue, May 15, 2018 @ 11:17 AM

The Stevie® Awards announced today the Grand Stevie Award winners in The 16th Annual American Business Awards® competition. Winners will be presented their Grand Stevie Awards trophies at the ABA’s gala banquet on June 11 in New York.

FIS, the Jacksonville, FL-based leader in financial services technology, will be presented the Grand Stevie Award for Most Honored Organization of the Year. FIS earned 70 award points, more than any other entrant. Stevie Award-winning organizations are accorded three points for each Gold Stevie win, two points per Silver Stevie win, and one-and-a-half points for each Bronze Stevie win.

ABA grand winner 201810Fold Communications, with offices in San Francisco, the Bay Area, Southern California, Texas, and Colorado, has won the Grand Stevie for Most Honored PR Agency of the Year with 29 points earned on behalf of clients including Agiloft, Attack IQ, and Versa, among others.

Other top ABA Grand Stevie winners include George P. Johnson Experience Marketing (Auburn Hills, MI) for Most Honored Interactive Agency of the Year with 21.5 points and Merkle (Columbia, MD) for Most Honored Marketing Agency of the Year with 18.5 points.

Grand Stevies were also awarded to the 10 other organizations with the most points in the 2018 competition.

The Top 10 winners are:

  1. PAIRELATIONS, Centennial, CO, on behalf of clients including Audigy, Beltone, Formativ Health, GN ReSound, Gorilla Safety, Soleo Health, and TekLeaders (48.5)
  2. Reltio, Redwood Shores, CA (38)
  3. Jeunesse Global, Orlando, FL (27.5)
  4. Makers Nutrition, Hauppauge, NY (21)
  5. Cisco Systems, nationwide (20.5)
  1. (tie) Aflac, Columbus, GA (18)
           John Hancock Signature Services, Boston, MA (18)
  2. (tie) Franklin Covey, Salt Lake City, UT (16.5)
            PAN Communications, with offices in Boston, New York, Orlando, and San Francisco (16.5)
             TopSpot, Houston, TX (16.5)

All organizations operating in the U.S.– large and small, public and private, for-profit and non-profit—are eligible to submit nominations to the ABAs in a wide range of categories, honoring achievement in every aspect of work life, from customer service and management to public relations and product development. More than 3,700 nominations submitted to the 2018 competition were reviewed and rated in the judging process by more than 200 professionals, whose average scores determined the Gold, Silver, and Bronze Stevie Award winners who were announced earlier this month. The June 11 awards presentations will be broadcast live via Livestream.

For a complete list of the 2018 Stevie Award winners, visit http://www.StevieAwards.com/ABA.

Sponsors of The 2018 American Business Awards include HCL America, John Hancock Signature Services, and SoftPro.

Tags: marketing awards, PR awards, American business awards, public relations awards

How Etech Creates Remarkable Experiences

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Thu, May 10, 2018 @ 09:58 AM

One aim of customer engagement is to continuously build and update knowledge on each individual visitor. Etech Global Services is a leading provider for customer engagement solutions, voice, quality monitoring, chat, social, and email. Etech began in 1997 in Texas in the United States and has expanded to include eight dynamic contact centers across the U.S., Jamaica, and India. Etech won the Silver Stevie® Award for Business Intelligence Solution - Human Intelligence Meets Artificial Intelligence in the 2018 Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service.
 
Pride in Their Job

etech 1Etech's solutions help their clients reduce efforts, enhance customer experience, increase sales results, and increase market share. Chief Customer Officer Jim Iyoob shares how their "servant leader" philosophy has motivated them to achieve success.

“The most evident area of impact is on the frontline employees,” says Iyoob. “The Stevie Award further validates their day-to-day efforts to make a remarkable difference for our clients. Being nationally recognized with a Stevie Award gives them a tremendous boost of confidence and pride in their job.”

Etech started with about 400 employees and now has grown to over 3,000 employees without a merger or acquisition.

An Effortless Experience

etech 2As 30-year veterans in their field, Etech's Insights division has continued to grow and now consists of more than 200 field expert data scientists. These experts have navigated a definitive increase of consumer control in today’s marketplace, directly impacting their industry and requiring their adaptability.

“Studies have shown that 89% of consumers have stopped doing business with particular companies after a single poor customer experience,” states Iyoob. “Consumers are willing to pay more for a service if they know they are going to have an effortless and positive customer experience.”

Etech constantly aims to make a remarkable difference in their clients’ lives and their communities.

“Growing as a leader does not occur overnight, but once our employees are presented with the tools of servant leadership, they set goals to start making changes intentionally, consistently and daily,” Iyoob says.
 
A Miracle in the Etech Family

Among all the gains and accomplishments Etech has experienced, one of the most dramatic and personal setbacks happened this past year to Etech's President and General Manager, Matt Rocco. Iyoob details Rocco’s story.

“In December 2016, Matt Rocco contracted a high mortality disease known as ARDS and fell into a coma for over a month. However, despite all the medical and scientific data to date, God decided to perform a miracle with Matt and keep him with us. Now, just hardly a year removed from being in a coma, Matt is back and leading the Etech family, which he has done so well for over 17 years. This event not only strengthened Matt and his immediate family, but in fact strengthened the 3,000+ Etech family worldwide.”

Etech defines adaptability as being flexible and willing to positively and purposefully introduce, embrace, and patiently lead the way through change. Etech has fully embraced this spirit.

Tags: best new products, best solution providers, business intelligence awards, new products and services

Stevie® Winners Announced in 2018 American Business Awards®

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Wed, May 02, 2018 @ 11:00 AM

The Stevie® Awards, organizers of the world’s premier business awards programs, today announced the Gold, Silver and Bronze Stevie winners in The 16th Annual American Business Awards®.

All organizations operating in the U.S.A. – large and small, public and private, for-profit and non-profit - are eligible to submit nominations to the ABAs in a wide range of categories, honoring achievement in every aspect of work life, from customer service and management to public relations and product development. More than 3,700 nominations were reviewed in the judging process this year by more than 200 professionals, whose average scores determined the winners.

For a complete list of the Stevie Award winners announced today, visit http://www.StevieAwards.com/ABA.

ABA group 2017 10-12018 Stevie winners will be celebrated and presented their awards during a gala event on Monday, June 11 at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York. Tickets are now on sale. The presentations will be broadcast live via Livestream.

Top winners of Gold Stevies, with three or more each, include Aeye (Pleasonton, CA), Aflac (Columbus, GA), Age of Learning (Glendale, CA), Anthem Foundation (Indianapolis, IN), Blue Wheel Media (Birmingham, MI), FIS (Jacksonville, FL), George P Johnson Experiential Marketing (Auburn Hills, MI), GN Hearing, (Bloomington, MN), GOLD PR (Irvine, CA), Gorilla Safety (Houston, TX), GTT Communications (McLean, VA), I Am Enough (Marina Del Ray, CA), Jeunesse Global (Orlando, FL), John Hancock Financial Services (Boston, MA), Marriott Vacations Worldwide (Orlando, FL), Petplan (Newtown Square, PA), Reltio (Redwood Shores, CA), Rentec Direct (Grants Pass, OR), Rimini Street (Las Vegas, NV), TopSpot (Houston, TX), Vectra (San Jose, CA) and Zenni Optical (Novato, CA).

Among all other Stevie winners, those winning five or more awards include 3D Exhibits (Schaumburg, IL), Accenture (Chicago, IL), ADP (Roseland, NJ), BMO Capital Markets (Chicago, IL), Brighton Health Plan Solutions (New York, NY), Cisco Systems Inc. (San Jose, CA), DCR Workforce (Boca Raton, FL), EMI Strategic Marketing (Boston, MA), Entercom (New York, NY), Franklin Covey (Salt Lake City, UT), HomeServe USA (Norwalk, CT), LABOV Marketing Communications and Training (Fort Wayne, IN), Makers Nutrition (Hauppauge, NY), Marketing Mojo (Charlottesville, VA), Merkle (Columbia, MD), MWWPR (New York, NY), New American Funding (Tustin, CA), Pacific Life Insurance Co. (Newport Beach, CA), Quest Software (Aliso Viejo, CA), SoftPro (Raleigh, NC), Spark Growth (New York, NY), STYLE Advertising (Birmingham, AL), Tata Consultancy Services (New York, NY), TekLeaders (Plano, TX), Thomson Reuters (Stamford, CT), WebPT (Phoenix, AZ) and Wolters Kluwer (New York, NY).

HCL America, part of HCL Technologies, a $7.4 billion global company that helps global enterprises reimagine their businesses for the digital age, sponsored the HCL Reimagining Business for the Digital Age awards, in 13 bespoke categories.  Stevie winners in these categories include Allscripts (Chicago, IL), BD (Franklin Lakes, NJ), Citi (New York, NY), Cummins Inc. (Columbus, IN), Deloitte (New York, NY), Merck & Co. (Kenilworth, NJ), Oncor (Dallas, TX), Symantec (Mountain View, CA), The Vanguard Group (Valley Forge, PA) and Verizon (New York, NY), among others.

Every new product or service nominated in The 2018 American Business Awards is included in voting for the People's Choice Stevie Awards for Favorite New Products, a worldwide public vote. Voting is now open at http://peopleschoice.stevieawards.com and will conclude on June 1. People’s Choice Stevie winners will be announced the week of June 4, and will be honored during the June 11 presentations.

“The nominations submitted for The 2018 American Business Awards were outstanding.  The competition was intense, and those recognized as Stevie Award winners should be immensely proud of this accomplishment,” said Michael Gallagher, president and founder of the Stevie Awards.

Tags: best solution providers, top customer service, Manager of the Year, employee of the year, womens awards, business developement, maverick awards

Centralizing Customer Care Makes a Difference for Facility Management Provider

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Tue, Apr 24, 2018 @ 01:23 PM

Behind every large commercial property, whether it is a university campus or a shopping mall, are countless moving parts that have to work in harmony. Throw off one of those parts, and you can create major headaches for employees and customers.

When it established its Customer Care Center (CCC) in 2015, Stevie-winner Grosvenor Services tried to ensure that issues would not occur for any of its commercial clients. By centralizing its customer support function, the facility services firm has been able to reduce complaints and resolve issues as quickly as possible.

The Dublin, Ireland-based company, which provides a range of services, including cleaning, security, mechanical, and electrical, built the center to follow through on its customer-first ethos. Employees in the center review processes and systems to eliminate potential conflicts and address client needs in an effective, timely manner.

“Clients require so much more from their supplier partners, and we must continue to deliver beyond the services we provide at the front line,” says Marianne Lambert, a business unit manager who oversees the CCC.

GrosvenorThe center is an extension of Grosvenor’s core values, summed up in the acronym “PROACT”—Pursuit of Excellence, Reliability, Openness, Accountability, Customer Focus, and Teamwork. It has proven to be a sound business decision, with the company subsequently winning a number of bids based on its commitment to customer service.

Customer Care Pays Dividends

The initiative has paid off in other ways too. The company became a finalist for multiple local awards and in February earned a Bronze Stevie® Award for Front-Line Customer Service Team of the Year in the 2018 Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service.

“When our CCC was initially formed, we began researching achievements and accreditations as a method of improvement and benchmarking,” says Lambert. “In doing so, I came across the Stevie Awards and immediately I felt this was extremely relevant and worth pursuing.”

The honor naturally brings a sense of considerable pride. “This is a huge personal achievement as the manager of the CCC,” Lambert says. “I really believe in what I do and this award acknowledges the work and commitment that has been invested so far.”

Founded in 1959, Grosvenor Services now serves clients throughout Ireland, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America, and employs more than 4,500 people. In addition to its core facility management services, the corporation has expanded to offer everything from reception and mailroom support to landscaping and pest control.

One constant throughout Grosvenor Services’ history is a focus on the needs of the customer. This family business has tried to distinguish itself from competitors by making clients feel like they are dealing with a much smaller organization.

The CCC has certainly helped them accomplish that goal, and now they have a Stevie Award to show for their efforts.

“This is a huge achievement and an honor for our business and our team especially,” says Lambert. “We have worked extremely hard to instill and embed our culture of customer focus and this award is an acknowledgement of all the hard work and dedication that has been committed to doing so.”

Tags: customer service awards, business awards, customer service success, business developement

Collective Health Makes Customers Happy and Healthy

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Tue, Apr 17, 2018 @ 02:58 PM

The United States is experiencing a shift in healthcare today and employers are at its center. Collective Health, based in San Francisco, California in the United States, strives to give companies a smarter way to provide healthcare coverage through technology and design. They won in the 2018 Silver Stevie® Awards for Sales and Customer Service: Silver for Customer Service Department of the Year and for Best Use of Technology for Customer Service.
 
Happier and Healthier Customers

collective healthFounded in October 2013, Collective Health is backed by NEA, Founders Fund, Google Ventures, and other leading investors. Erika Alperin is the Corporate Marketing and Internal Communications Manager at Collective Health.

“We’re focused on serving the 170M+ Americans who receive healthcare coverage from their employers,” says Alperin. “We are interested in the shift to recognizing that the member experience really matters when it comes to healthcare. When people get the help they need to understand their health benefits, they are better, happier, and healthier consumers of healthcare.”

They replace traditional health plans with a flexible, data-driven alternative that enables companies to get more out of their investment while taking better care of their people.

Collective Health has become a popular choice for organizations to review their increasing costs year over year, and how to improve long-lasting effects of profits and employee spending not running as efficiently as possible.

An Effortless Experience for Everyone

Collective Health is powered by an all-in-one solution that connects and administers the entire health benefits ecosystem: health plans, benefits programs, spending accounts, and employee support. Their technology delivers a more effortless experience for everyone.

This has led them to achieving an NPS (Net Promoter Score) score that is 10 times greater than the industry average, which is due in large part to their amazing Member Advocate team. Alperin explains why their team has played a pivotal role.

“A few of our MA's joined the role because they have had to navigate health insurance and coverage issues for some of their family members. Not only were they trying to understand their plans, they were translating their coverage to family members from English to Spanish. Upon joining Collective, they helped to start a group on our team to serve our Spanish members and translate complex plan documents.”

Collective Health has also been recognized by The Wall Street Journal Top 25 Tech Companies to Watch, 2017, and Rock Health's Best Digital Health Company to Work For, 2017.

“We offer a rigorous training program, both content and cultural, work with internally built tools and technology that streamline processes, and allow us to focus on doing our job,” Alperin says.

Hiring advocates with a passion for helping others and solving complex issues can provide an important sense of empathy to customers.

Tags: best customer service, customer service awards, sales awards, customer service department of the year

Brainier Solutions Helps Companies Embrace Employee Trainings

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Wed, Apr 11, 2018 @ 06:20 PM

Brainier Solutions, Inc. is definitely making an impression in the tech world, both with their foundational Learning Management Systems (LMS) and their customer service. Consistent care has earned them the 2017 Bronze Stevie® Award for Customer Service Department of the Year. This is their third year winning a Stevie Award for Sales & Customer Service.

brainier-1Brainier was founded in 1995 in Minneapolis, Minnesota in the United States with a mission to aid clients in continuing education and training, advancing skillsets, and expanding knowledge. They offer three different computer software packages: élan LMS, Chameleon 2.0 (developed by BI WORLDWIDE), and Legacy LMS.

Brainier Solutions serves small to large enterprises dedicated to training and investing in their staff. Their software packages offer an interactive, individualized learning portal accessible to employees at any time and on any digital device they choose.

They state, “Brainier programs are developed with the understanding that employees are not machines,” the company states. “They are people balancing needs, concerns, and interests in and out of the workplace. As such, we aspire to provide a curriculum that develops work-related skillsets and personal development attributes that promote success in every aspect of their life.”


The LMS offers access to courses in Drug and Alcohol Awareness, HIPAA, IT Skills, Legal Compliance, OSHA, PC Skills, SkillSoft, as well as access to other course libraries. Employees can study at their own pace in ways they can comprehend and succeed. LMS is sure to include blended learning options with interactive e-learning and multimedia resources. Success is measured by each individual’s testing and tracking.

Employers and their administrators can manage and coordinate trainings as well as keep track of each employee’s development and success. The LMS programs also offer internal social communication via blogs, file exchange, internal messaging, and live chat.

They are repeatedly recognized for their product and services by tech guru sites like TrainingIndustry.com and SoftwareInsider.com. TrainingIndustry.com cited Brainier Solutions as one of The Top 20 companies in 2017 for Learning Portals/LMS after several years of featuring them as a company to watch. SoftwareInsider.com assessed them as “Above Average” in almost every category. The Brandon Hall Group has awarded Brainier Solutions for Excellence in Technology for Learning Management and Unique Learning Technology every year since 2013.

Brainier Solutions’ excellent product and award-winning customer service mirrors the motivation behind their LMS systems. “To advance, you must inspire and invest in their [employee] development. In-house training not only motivates employees to improve, it also gives them the tools and knowledge to do so.”

Tags: customer service awards, sales awards, customer service department of the year, solution provider awards, best sales team

The Stevie® Awards for Great Employers Issues Call for Entries

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Tue, Apr 10, 2018 @ 09:00 AM

The Stevie Awards has issued the call for entries for the third annual Stevie Awards for Great Employers, which honor the world’s best companies to work for and the human resources teams, professionals, suppliers, and new products and services that help to create and drive great places to work.

All individuals and organizations worldwide—public and private, for-profit, and non-profit, large and small—may submit nominations to the Stevie Awards for Great Employers. The early-bird entry deadline, with reduced entry fees, is May 2. The final entry deadline is June 6, but late entries will be accepted through July 18 with payment of a late fee. Entry details are available at www.StevieAwards.com/HR.

SAGE 2016 hall groupREVIEW THE ENTRY KIT HERE

An international judging panel of more than 50 executives will determine the Stevie Award winners. Finalists will be announced on August 15. Gold, Silver, and Bronze Stevie Award winners will be revealed and presented their awards at a gala event in New York City on September 21.

The Stevie Awards for Great Employers recognize achievement in many facets of the workplace. Categories include:

  • Employer of the Year Awards
  • HR Achievement Awards
  • HR Individual Awards
  • Solution Provider Awards
  • HR Team Categories
  • Solution Provider Awards
  • New Product & Service Categories
    • Software
    • Training Programs or Media
    • Curated Training Platform of the Year

Winners in the 35 industry-specific Employer of the Year categories will be determined by a unique blend of public votes and professional ratings. Public voting will take place from July 23–August 12.

Stevie Award winners in 2017 included Ad Exchange Group, Deutsche Telekom Services Europe GmbH, Gamelearn, Grubhub, IBM, KIND LLC, McAfee, Migros Ticaret A.S., Samsung Electronics Turkey, Wayfair, Workiva, and Yerra Solutions.

Tags: hr awards, human resources awards, solution provider awards, Buisness awards, employer of the year, Start-up, business developement

Focus on Customer Service Pays off for Travelzoo

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Mon, Apr 02, 2018 @ 01:59 PM

With competition from more than 2,300 organizations, winning a Stevie in the 2018 Stevie® Awards for Sales and Customer Service is no easy feat.

Travelzoo, founded in 1998 in New York, United States, is a company that publishes top deals on travel fares and hotels. They came away with four Stevie Awards, including the 2018 People's Choice Award for Favorite Customer Service in Leisure and Tourism, Front-Line Customer Service Team of the Year, Customer Service Management Team of the Year and Customer Service Department of the Year.

Travelzoo 1“Winning has rallied our colleagues around the world to re-double our commitment to deliver ‘100% happiness, 100% of the time,’” says Lisa Oswald, Travelzoo’s Senior Vice President of Global Customer Service. “We know everyone's job is all about doing what's best for our members—from the travel partners we choose to work with, to the destinations we curate and the rigor of our quality vetting process—we are Travelzoo 2proud to stand behind our brand.”

This is not the first time Travelzoo has come away with special honors from the Stevie Awards. Last year, the site garnered a Bronze Stevie for its use of contact center technology and a Gold award in the Women in Business Awards. Oswald also won a Gold Stevie in 2013 for Customer Service Executive of the Year.

Travelzoo 3Even so, Oswald contends that pulling in several customer service awards at the February 23 ceremony in Las Vegas was particularly gratifying. “A win for the service team has infused an even greater sense of pride and enthusiasm for our members-first philosophy,” she says.

Listening to the Customer

The company provides 28 million members with insider deals and one-of-a-kind experiences that have been reviewed by its experts.

Part of the company’s growth stems from a resurgence in the leisure travel sector. Americans spent more than $100 billion on summer vacations alone in 2017, according to a report by Allianz Travel Insurance. In 2016, spending was just shy of $90 billion.

“Research shows that experiences make you happier and are as valuable, or more valuable, than buying fancy things. It’s changing the way people travel across all generations and has given rise to the sharing economy,” says Oswald. “Consumer spending is expected to grow in ‘non-essential’ categories, including vacations and dining out, and we are poised to meet that growing need for experiences—that’s what we do.”

Even in a healthy industry, Travelzoo’s unwavering commitment to customer service has helped it stand out. Its philosophy, says Oswald, is one of continuous improvement, where the department strives to fine-tune every aspect of the customer experience.

The Voice of the Customer program is critical and elicits feedback from people who use its travel deals. The program has helped Travelzoo raise its CSAT score, a key measure of customer satisfaction, from the low 80s to the low 90s in a short period of time, Oswald continued.

“We don't have an army of people, and we don't have an unlimited budget. However, we do have a relentless focus on making incremental changes that matter to our members,” Oswald explains. “And the cumulative impact of these changes over time—changes in product, changes in process, and changes in policy—is that our members have endorsed our service at all-time record highs. I call that the ‘Thank You Effect.’”

Tags: customer service awards, customer service leader of the year, Woman of the Year, business developement

Ahjo Communications Puts Burning Creativity into Business Strategy

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Wed, Mar 28, 2018 @ 12:29 PM

Public relations teams strive to represent people, companies, services, or messages in a favorable light. Ahjo Communications is a public relations agency in Helsinki, Finland that considers itself an organization that achieves that goal with creative fire. Their vision to be known for renewing communications and the communications culture has led them to winning both a Gold Stevie® for "Crisis Communications Campaign of the Year” for their work with Heart Hospital, and a Silver Stevie for Communications or PR Campaign/Program of the Year in The 2017 International Business Awards. 

Bringing Heart to Work

Ahjo communications.jpgAhjo has been the Finnish affiliate of Weber Shandwick since 1992. Weber Shandwick is a leading global public relations firm with offices in 81 countries around the world. The Ahjo team consists of Senior Advisor Sari-Liia Tonttila, who is one of Finland’s leading crisis communications experts with experience in various company crisis communications; Communications Consultant Eeva Louko, a former journalist; and Senior Consultant Meri Marttinen, who has a background in healthcare and consumer communications in which she focused on developing influencer marketing.

“The impact has been good. Our clients have been happy for us and the prize has given us new positive publicity. The client, Heart Hospital, is very happy,” says Marttinen about Ahjo’s success with Heart Hospital. “The team is a perfect combination of three creative, brave women who always aim high and think beyond the box—strategically, but every time toward client's business goals.”

Balancing Passions

Ahjo Communications acknowledges that their success has come from many facets of their lives. Senior Advisor Sari-Liia loves to ski, exercise in nature, and come up with great, big ideas for her clients.

“[Sari-Liia] is an example of a person who works for her goals to achieve them: she wanted to bring the world-leading PR summit, ICCO, to Finland for the first time. Her work paid off. Now this year ICCO is organized in Finland!” says Marttinen.

Marttinen dreams of learning as many languages as possible, and Eeva will definitely write a book.

“Many of us enjoy hiking in nature. In addition, we love to read and spend time on other arts. We are not scared to bring out our ideas. We protect small, delicate ideas as they may grow big when further planned.”

When You Grow, They Grow

With effective communication to implement business strategy and supportive, strong networks, future pioneering positions are likely to grow in their market. Ahjo Communications provides workshops for professionals and business owners who want to build on their established platforms to reach career specific goals.

Ahjo does this by designing workshops to meet strategic and developmental needs of executives and department leaders. In the ‘Idea Leadership Workshop’, Ajho Communications helps business leaders crystallize ideas or brand goals in an understandable, pragmatic form that employees, stakeholders, and customers can carry with them and share.

Ahjo Communications wants to help you grow.

Tags: communications awards, PR awards, public relations awards, event marketing

New Owner Helps Event Marketing Firm Stay on the Cutting Edge

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Fri, Mar 23, 2018 @ 02:26 PM

Trade shows and conferences can be great opportunities for businesses to meet prospects—but they can also be crowded places where exhibitors find themselves in competition with hundreds or even thousands of other companies to catch the eye of attendees.

That’s why many exhibitors hire experts like Live Marketing, a U.S. firm that specializes in creating memorable experiences. For example, a food ingredient developer enlisted them when it sought to create a buzz around its newest solutions at an important industry event. Live Marketing’s answer: RFID sensors to trigger an interactive, multi-screen display when guests “pick and place” various food items, a novel approach that helped the client exceed its lead-generation goal.

Live Marketing pic.jpgFor a medical device maker, the team created a unique conference display featuring a glass-encased laboratory dotted with scannable hotspots that let the visitor experience its products firsthand. Each interaction prompted a brief video or augmented reality sequence, resulting in an immersive tour through the lab.

Underpinning those examples, and many other projects, is a reliance on technology to push the boundaries of what a live corporate event can be. It’s an approach that Anne Trompeter, then a 10-year veteran of the Chicago-area firm, brought to the forefront when she bought Live Marketing in 2014.

The organization has long had a prominent position within the world of corporate events. Launched in the 1970s, the agency was a pioneer in the experiential marketing industry. It was the brain trust that helped introduce the Intel Pentium processor and the world’s first flip phone to the marketplace.

When she took the reins four years ago, Trompeter’s goal was to make sure the firm didn’t grow stale. “I bought Live Marketing from its original founder with a clear vision to reinvigorate and refresh the company to be relevant for today’s sophisticated experiential marketing and technology-activated approaches,” she says.

In a short period of time, she’s helped make that vision a reality. The company has won numerous industry awards for its innovative, tech-based exhibits, and Trompeter recently garnered the Silver Stevie® award for Female Entrepreneur of the Year in The 2017 American Business Awards.

A Team Effort

Breathing new life into the agency hasn’t been a solo task, something Trompeter readily acknowledges.

One of the changes she made early on was to get the most out of what she saw as untapped potential within the staff. “I’ve shifted our creative process so we are all challenged to bring in new engagement ideas on a regular basis,” she explains.

She’s also put a premium on helping employees grow, either within their role or in new positions. In one instance, a member of the marketing team expressed an interest in being a producer, a job with which she had little experience. Not wanting to lose one of her valued employees, Trompeter helped ease her into the new role over a period of 18 months. “By mid-2017, she was full-time producer and is very happy and productive,” the executive says.

In another instance, the executive leveraged an employee’s degree in theater management by moving him up into a production role. Once an assistant to Trompeter, he’s now a full-time creative director with a roster of his own clients for which he writes and develops concepts.

“I consider it an achievement to cultivate the very best team who feels appreciated and able to do their finest work at all times,” she says. “The way I do that is listening to my team members and making adjustments based on what I’m hearing.”

As if running a top-tier events marketing firm isn’t challenging enough, Trompeter does it while juggling a litany of other roles. Among them: parent, church choir member, and triathlete.

Rather than detracting from her business responsibilities, she says those outside endeavors help keep her energized. “Training for races and triathlons plus my overall commitment to fitness keeps me physically and mentally healthy,” she says. “I apply that same focus and drive to my business. But I recognize the importance of a healthy work-life balance, not just for me, but for everyone on my team.”

A breast cancer survivor, Trompeter uses her professional success to support cancer research and other philanthropic causes and encourages her employees to perform charitable work as well. “Several employees suggested giving back more specifically to the communities where our offices are located,” she says. “So beginning last year, each office identifies and does two hands-on charitable give-backs, like serving in local soup kitchens and doing food distribution.”

“In 2018, our theme is ‘Get Engaged’,” says Trompeter. “I feel strongly that now more than ever we have a responsibility to be civic-minded. Getting more involved in our communities’ neediest populations is an immediate and personalized way to get engaged.”

Tags: marketing awards, women awards, best marketing team, business developement, event marketing

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