Margin in Voice and data

I’ve been to a few exhibitions this year and although they have still been busy, they haven’t been as busy as their respective events last year. Events such as Internet World and the IPTV forum proved extremely popular last year, and in this economic climate, I guess it is only natural that there were cut backs in the number of attendees. From my perspective, it’s hard to justify spending a whole day out of the office traipsing from stand to stand to listen to numerous pitches about services that seem to do everything and nothing at the same time.

However, yesterday was different. I haven’t been to a ‘Margin in Voice and Data‘ expo before, but registered to attend a few months ago. However, shortly after registering, I received notice from them that due to economic pressures, they were changing the format of the expo to an invite only affair, and that I should wait patiently to receive my invite. Admittedly I thought this to be a clever ploy, and assumed that they would go ahead and invite everyone who showed an interest. And when I received my invite, I was less than shocked.

I traipsed to Twickenham yesterday morning, to see a lot fewer numbers than I expected, but right from the onset, everyone was very sociable and happy to talk about the challenges they were facing currently, and how they were pulling themselves out of it. The big boys from Opal to BT Wholesale were present. However, the real value to be had was in talking to smaller resellers who maybe didn’t trust those with big shiny stands who talked a lot, but hadn’t delivered for them in the past. This element has been missing from previous events I have been too. And it made it so much more worthwhile. I was put directly in front of prospective clients, and understanding their current issues. I suggest other event organisers take note as the intimate nature of this made this event so much more relevant, and resulted in both myself and my colleague getting extremely well qualified leads to work on.

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