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chuck's blog

Hot Leads Have Short Lives!

Everyday, I see the leads come in and go out and I noticed that truly attracts a wide variety of meeting and event planners that are organizing everything from Senior Leadership Meetings to Sweet Sixteens.  The reactions I receive from planners when following up with their requests, are as varying as the types of events they are planning.  Some planners are thrilled, they booked a venue and have moved on to other planning details, some are still searching because their first choice wasn't the right fit,

Affordable Meetings National 2008 - A TOTAL Success!

OK. So Affordable Meetings National this year in Washington, DC totally ROCKED! The Unique Venues section had 29 cool venues in it, from conference centers and stadiums to campuses and dining venues. The section was very unique.

What NOT to Do When the Meeting Industry Turns from a Sellers' to a Buyer's Market.

Meeting Planner Joan Eisenstodt and venue-supplier Grace Markum share 10 things venues should NOT do when the market begins to shift from a sellers' to a buyer's market.
  1. Don’t offer deep discounts.
  2. Don’t cut the advertising and marketing budgets.
  3. Don’t make your marketing sound like a fire sale.
  4. Don’t cut the number of people on the sales team.
  5. Don’t fall off buyers’ radar screens.
  6. Don’t become invisible.
  7. Don’t overlook the SMERF mark

A Retreat To The Windy City

Sounds ironic to use the word retreat and the Windy City of Chicago in the same statement. The Windy City elicits thoughts of a big city, tall buildings, restaurants, shopping, Lake Michigan, the Bears, snow and, of course, traffic.

A couple of weeks ago our company held a retreat in Chicago to get away from the phones and the distractions of the office. It was hard for me to imagine not being distracted in Chicago with all that is available in the city.

Education Lesson Transferrable to Marketing and Selling

Check out this great You Tube post that certainly hit me over the head with reality! Wow! I think that everything here is transferable to marketing and sales. It's crazy! R u marketing in the present and with the future in mind? Maybe it's time to rethink your approach. I know I need to "shake it up" a bit myself! BLOG on!

Hopes Dashed to Host the Tie Guys!

What's this world coming to?  Another critical association has bit the dust!  Yesterday it was announced that the Men's Dress Furnishings Association (MDFA for all of you that are familiar with it) is dissolving.  It's true.  The tie makers just aren't doing the biz anymore.  They say it's because men aren't wearing ties on a regular basis any longer...but I think it's because the ties designed are just so damn ugly!

Here's to perpetual dress down days!

Thankful for Trains!

I'm a bit of a travel snob. I do it almost every week...plane after plane after plane! I have always avoided trains in the USA. When I travel in the UK, I consider them a necessary evil, but always a reliable way to get from city to city.

Empty Skies?

I was just reading a June 9 article in the online Business Travel News ( and I began to wonder what the latest airline woes mean for the meetings and conference industry as it pertains to Unique Venues members. The article discusses the latest rash of capacity slashing by the major carriers. American, United, Continental, Delta, Northwest and US Airways have all announced reductions in flight capacities, some by as much as 18%.

It's True...I HAD Hair!

I received a response to my blog asking when I had hair. Believe it or not, I still have hair (except a small patch up front). I choose to remove it. But, for those who still don't believe me, check out my Juan Epstein (Welcome Back Kotter) lookalike image. Chuck with Hair!

Can Using Your One-of-a-kind Venue be a Status Symbol?

I just read a great article in that suggest that uniqueness is now a status symbol for consumers...including meeting and event planners! The days of consuming products that the masses are consuming are passing. Instead, people are looking for "status stories" to tell. Imagine a planner saying..."I had a fantastic meeting at a really unique site! We met on a ranch, etc." as opposed to saying..."Yes, we met in a hotel ballroom"....BORING!