With all the upheaval that COVID-19 has caused in businesses lately, it seems we have been shifting to plan B in just about every area you can imagine. In many ways these shifts have been painful, but sometimes pain means progress and begs for innovation.
Innovation spurs new processes and procedures that were previously outside our comfort zone or purview, resulting in problem-solving, strategic thinking and activation. While we in no way want to minimize the devastating and in some cases irredeemable business loss many of our industry friends have suffered, we also see so many of you pushing yourselves to get comfortable in the discomfort, seeking education and resources to guide you as you navigate the current version of normal.
For us, United Fresh Live! is a perfect example of where companies should be seeking comfort in the discomfort. After all, virtual trade shows aren’t a new idea – they’re just new to us.
Virtual Value in More Ways Than One
Hopefully many of you saw the May 14 webinar that United Fresh hosted to provide the industry with a look inside the show experience. We appreciate the thoughtfulness the team has invested in translating our usual in-person experience to a virtual one that provides educational, networking and expo components that mirror the live event as much as possible. We hope you will take advantage of the FREE attendance and no travel expenses to encourage more members of your team to benefit from this opportunity. As a company that regularly invests in education and professional development for our team, we know how rare and awesome a free price tag is!
You Can Do This!
For those of you wondering how you’re going to pull off a virtual event when you’ve never done one, it’s really more attainable than you might think. With United Fresh, the platform itself is very plug-n-play. If you’ve led the creation of visual or video assets for a live event, you are well-equipped to prepare content for the virtual event.
United has a few resources on the event website to help you build your booth and market your participation. The key is getting started now so that you give yourself some lead time to develop any assets you may need.
How Do You Know It Will Be Worth It?
As with anything new you try in business, it’s about solid preparation and finding the right partners. United Fresh makes that second variable easy for us; because they’ve already shown how invested they are in providing resources, building a thoughtful schedule, making attendance free, and connecting with retailers to encourage even more participation than is feasible with the live event. They’ve demonstrated their commitment to making our uncomfortable situation as comfortable as possible.
So now it comes down to solid preparation. How are you preparing a show experience for your buyers that will deliver value to them? How are you marketing your participation? How are you leveraging different subject matter experts in your organization that wouldn’t normally make an appearance at a live show? How are you taking advantage of the digital format to invite your audience into an interaction you can’t duplicate on a show floor?
Instead of asking yourself how to thrive within the limits of a virtual show, ask yourself how you can thrive without the limits of a costly physical structure 2,000 miles from home. I bet you’ll come up with some pretty great ideas.
We look forward to linking arms with many of you as you prepare to bring those ideas to life in the coming weeks. And we hope you feel encouraged to embrace United Fresh Live! as the business opportunity that it is.