Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Better Travel booking with HIPMUNK?

As a long time Kayak.com browser I was of course skeptical when yet another aggregator comes into the mix. However, since Pogue seemed to like it i gave it a quick look.
search results on hipmunk.com
With a straight forward GANTT based view the options available are clear from the first search. With a clear visualization of the legs of the journey and layovers one will avoid the debacle of accidentally booking the flight that was cheap because of the over night stay in the airport or the bus ride to ORLY from CDG.

Of course the novel "sort by agony" button is a clever winner where the price, duration and number of stops are taken into consideration. I think I will probably lose my link to KAYAK.com on my Chrome shortcuts bar and have to add hipmunk.com

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Funny? or Sad?

What passes as humor these days and for some people is a little puzzling.

Recently my employer had a marketing event (seminar) that was attended by a former colleague, who is currently employed at a customer. Apparently, he decided it was in the greatest humor to fill out his satisfaction survey in my name-making many snide comments and leaving generally negative feedback.

Never mind that during his tenure with my company I stood by him and took many bullets for him; or that I put my reputation on the line by advocating his strengths, as others pulled down on his alleged weaknesses; but the event was attended by a number of people in our industry who should be always thought of as potential future employers or customers.

There have  been days that I have done similar, but I usually made sure that such "Mock" surveys made their way in to the hopper and did not get turned in.

  • Sorry, I did not find it funny to see my name attached to the survey
  • Sorry that I am not held in high enough regard to keep you from making an ass of yourself
  • Sorry you mistook me for somebody so disposable that you can use my name that way
Respect of oneself and others was a lesson that some people still need to go back to kindergarten to learn.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Are Tradeshows still relevant?

StringGirl as a Tradeshow booth babe
Sitting in the Convention Center blogging--I guess that is part of the answer to the question of relevancy. My brother-in-law asked me if the show is worth it; and unfortunately I did not have a clear answer. Certainly if we did not attend at least one show in the sales region we would probably wonder if we have missed anything or anyone important. But I can't say that definitively. In the past 5 years I think I can only track back 4-5 definitive sales contacts that were started with the trade show.

However, I can also say that the tradeshow did allow us to make deeper contact with some people who were already engaged in the sales cycle. Maybe the show did offer a chance to quicken that pace or increase the overall turnover from that sale.

Time spent with customers, and gauging the reaction of prospects and non-prospects together is very valuable, practicing the shtick and the 30 second pitch is definitely a self improvement bonus I get from being at the show.

Go to the shows, don't be heart broken if you don't leave with a set of A quality leads, but don't let the boat sail by either without sharpening your saw on the pitch and freshen up on your selling to the non-believers.