This is to make up for the image of the old guy in the Speedo last week.
From an email from a client: "I just got off the telephone with Kristen Girard, from Ocean Spray. She said that you were great, very charismatic and upbeat and added that exciting and fun "dimension" to their booth that kept the people coming in, and they even had waiting lines!!!!! She said that whenever you took your breaks that the booth would immediately turn quiet."
'Course, we all knew the room got quieter when Heidi left. :-)
Also, it looks like we've hammered out most of the details for my next long-term assignment: I've agreed to manage the Fallen Angel Fashions booth for the eight-week (yes EIGHT-WEEK) run of the Michigan Renaissance faire. I'm very excited about the gig. It'll be a lot of work with no air-conditioning (and no showers--this is an authentic faire!), it's true, but I've been a fan of this company's corsets for a long time. I'm really excited at the prospect of promoting their wares, which I've always described as "the best-made corsets I've ever seen--and I've seen a LOT of corsets!"
So the good news is that I get to stuff myself into a gorgeous corset every day, flirt like crazy, and get paid for it! The other news (not really bad) is that I'll be spending the next eight weekends driving to Michigan and back.
In other interesting news, I was asked to scream yesterday. Yup. I went into an audition for a hearing aid product, and the clients mentioned something about the things listed in my Special Skills section. My first thought was, "OK, if you want me to deliver this script while hula-hooping (which, BTW, I can do quite easily), then I need to get paid a lot more money!"
But no; they wanted to hear my blood-curdling scream, which I'd also listed as a Special Skill. So, after reading the script deadpan, I paused and then let loose with a terrified scream, causing the other casting director to throw open the door and cast a worried head inside within a matter of seconds. :-)
So now I'm wondering if they'll be changing the script to involve the phrase, "OK, we'll never cover these dark woods alone. Let's split up."
Why is it so all-fired important to be positive all the time? With all the business and enterpreneurial books I'm constantly reading, there seems to be one consistant message: Be happy! Stay in a good mood all the time! Eradicate negativity from your thoughts! Remember to be happy! Are you happy? You'd better be!
This all reminds me of a scene from The Simpsons, in which Marge has suggested Funny Hat Day and Wayne Newton music to improve company morale. So the scene changes to the same suicidal employees as before, with the only change being the addition of fun hats and Wayne Newton music.
So I ask: what's so all-fired awful about being in a bad mood every now and then? In Zen philosophy, we're taught to accept problems, sadness, and frustration as a part of life. Life has natural ups and downs, and it's highly unnatural to try to replace all the downs with ups. Just let the downs happen; they end soon enough.
Matter of fact, one of the nicer things I enjoy about Barbara Sher and her Success Teams is that she specifically promotes success, "even if you're not always in a good mood." She doesn't give you any namby-pamby (yes, "namby-pamby"--first time I've ever used that in a sentence) nonsense about forcing yourself to replace discouraged thoughts with positive ones. She simply encourages people to get together and brainstorm ideas for success, take action, and stay on each other's cases until they get what they want. This I like.
And I'm even a bit grumpy about it.
I had to share this pic from my favorite marketing campaign from the IFT show. It's from a manufacturer of soy product and really reinforces the idea that TASTE MATTERS. *shiver*
All that's missing is the state of Texas tattooed on his derriere, n'est-ce pas?
And on another note... now that the shows have slowed down and there's zippo zilch nada on my calendar for August, I'm taking suggestions as to how to entertain myself.
Thought I'd share an excerpt from a new client email I just received:
"Heidi, you have no idea how happy the success of this show has made me. It is the high point in my career because it proves to me that I do have good ideas and can transfer them across industries, and can recognize good, talented, and classy people when I meet them - who I would in turn promote to my clients for their benefit. If I wouldn't have attended the Exhibitor Show this year I never would have met you and this never would have come about, and neither would their booth design... It's a miracle!"
First of all, yes, of course you can! This particular woman is talented and hardworking and an absolute joy to work with.
Second, Louanne, would you agree to appear in my infomercial?
"Heidi Miller: she slices, she dices, she's a miracle product!"
Thanks for the warm-fuzzy blush!
On the one hand, I should be thrilled that my newest client, Ocean Spray, was blown away by my ability to jump in and pull over 200 attendees into the booth for formalized taste-testing today. Matter of fact, we had to stop taste-testing a half-hour before the show ended because, after only five hours of the first day of the show, we'd already used up over half the product they'd brought along!
So I'm wondering if I should be excited and thrilled that my clients feel they're more than getting their money's worth, or alarmed by the fact that they're surprised that they're getting their money's worth!
Along other lines... my Success Team buddy Laura just called me to check in and has already done wonders in helping me with a stumbling block to my goal of doing an international show within the next 11 months. To wit, the fact that I'll be planted at McCormick Place until Wednesday, just before our next Success Team meeting. How could I possibly do anything during a show? Usually I barely have time to eat! (although this was not so much a problem in the Ocean Spray booth, doing taste testing!)
That is, it came to me that, while I can't make any calls until Wednesday, I can quite easily hop on line and take a look at the Alliance Francaise calendar and mark an event or two to attend. Then I'll call on Wednesday. Logical, n'est-ce pas? Thanks, Laura!
Warm fuzzies all over today! An excerpt from an email from a potential client: "[He] picked up on your professionalism, wit and overall package and now it's up to them to decide." Did you hear that? I'm professional, witty, and I have a package!
:-) Anyway, we also had an incredible first Success Team meeting last night! If you're not familiar with the idea, go check it out at www.shersuccessteams.com. It's a concept started by the scintillating and always-practical Barbara Sher, author of Wishcraft, among many other books. The idea is that people from all walks of life get together and throw ideas around to help each other figure out how to jump-start and achieve their dreams.
Last night was the first meeting of the first EVER Chicago-area Success Team, and it was amazing! We uncovered goals varying from spiritual enlightenment to buying a two-flat to publishing a screenplay. And guess what? We all made a little progress on those goals in just two hours. Pretty amazing what six people can do when they put their minds to it, isn't it?
What was my goal? Well, I'm glad you asked! Since I'm already mid-dream (yes, I'm dreaming this!), I chose one that I'm really looking forward to accomplishing this year: presenting at my first international show, hopefully at least partially in French!
Don't worry; I'll keep y'all updated on this goal as it progresses. Party at my place when it's accomplished!
I just can't wait to write the entry entitled, "She shoots! She scores!"... in reference to successfully pitching a big client, that is. You see, I had the fortune of running into a young man with a small exhibit house, Defined Exhibits, at the Plastics show two weeks ago. And he has given me the opportunity to pitch my services to his biggest client, who is in desperate need of some energy and pizzazz for its exhibit booths.
So I actually will be shamelessly selling myself tomorrow! Why do I feel like I should be selling tickets to this? ;-)
In all seriousness, I couldn't be more thrilled. This is what it's all about--helping companies put their best foot and face forward to get the word out about their fabulous products and services. I think this is going to be a very profitable partnership for everyone--don't you just love it when it really does turn out to be win-win??
... what a wonderful world! :-)
This has been a helluva week! At this year's NECC in Seattle, challenges were being thrown at me left and right like squirming monkeys to juggle! First monkey pitch: the Internet is down for most of the day, making my live Internet demos impossible! No problem: I demo the client's CD-ROMs instead.
Second monkey pitch: the Internet actually slows down to a snail's pace during a live demonstration. No problem! I simply request that the front row of the audience to do what I dubbed The Download Dance, which involves flailing the arms about wildly in the air. Surprisingly, it actually works on occasion.
Third monkey pitch: somebody at the show brings in a virus to the Internet, so during one of my presentations, a big, blinking virus box pops up on the screen, concurrent with a very loud siren sound warning me of the virus. Oh, joy!! Fortunately, I could minimize the virus box and easily continue with the presentation. However, it did take our IT guys nearly 30 minutes to get rid of the damn thing.
And did I mention the siren virus was back again this morning in full force, delaying this blog entry for nearly 45 minutes while our guys once again cleaned everything?
And I'm not even counting the baby monkey pitches here, like food lines so long that I never got to eat despite my client very kindly scheduling a lunch break, and the horrible acoustics in my hotel. (Nothing like listening to some guy thud away on a Stair Master while you're trying to sleep).
All this being said, the title for my entry today ISN'T sarcastic. While there were a few too many monkeys for my taste on this trip, I left the show floor at the end of the first day INVIGORATED, kind of like in my sales days. Yes, I'd met every challenge and still made over 15 effective presentations for my client, and loved every minute of it!
Geez, I LOVE what I do!!!