The blog has a singular focus this week: GlassBuild America. Before I begin, however, full disclosure: I do work for the National Glass Association, which sponsors the event. I know that some of you might be tiring of me constantly promoting this show, but I do it because I believe I have a compelling story to tell. So please read on, and see where I am coming from.
I have attended GlassBuild America (known back in the day as The NGA Show) basically every year since 1998. There’s no doubt the event has changed, but so has our industry. Once upon a time I was even critical of the show, making fun of it for trying to evolve. (I now know that is what good companies attempt to do; me being immature, stupid and thinking I was bullet-proof missed that.)
When I joined the GlassBuild America effort, I figured I’d have no problems just jumping in. After all, I (with a few others) built the GANA BEC to more than 800 people, so I have handled big crowds. Right? Nope. It didn’t dawn on me until I really got into it how huge and intense GlassBuild America really is. The team that truly puts this show together is absolutely unreal: a handful of the hardest working people I have ever been around.
So you are probably now wondering where I am going with this…well it's simple: this year the show is tracking to have great exhibits and the best attendance in a long time. I just want everyone to be a part of it. I want it to be the BEST EVER. I want it to be great for the exhibitors and sponsors who participate. And I want to throw it out to those on the fence, why they shouldn’t miss it.
First and foremost, this is the biggest event in our industry...by far. Combine every other event (and there are many good ones out there), and you won’t even get to a third of the people that attend GlassBuild America. Every major player either has a booth or a sponsorship, or at least, walks the floor.
To me, the products make the show. Every year, new, groundbreaking and innovative products fill the floor, and smart participants that are either diversifying their business or looking for a new business channel lap it up and run with it. At the end of the day, GlassBuild and its amazing exhibitors make people’s businesses better. I even had one exhibitor ask me to chill out on the push to find more exhibitors because he liked that he didn’t have all of his competitors on the floor.
The networking is second to none, from the opening night cocktail party to all of the other events. You can accomplish more in three days at GlassBuild America than in three months on the road.
What else would you miss, aside from your competitors getting a massive step up, and chance to network yourself and your business? You’d miss the educational opportunities, from the great panel at the Glazing Executives Forum (featuring top people like Dick Beuke of PPG, Mike Turner of YKK, Jim Miller of View and Dr. Jeff Meyer of White Bear), to an insanely good marketing seminar by Rich Porayko, to one of the most exciting panels we’ve had in years on the growth and ascent of decorative printing on glass. (Believe me, digital printing on glass is extremely popular.) Plus, there will be even more of the popular floor demonstrations.
It’s the one place to find product lines like truck racks, storefronts, sealants, hardware, software, dynamic glass, handrails, screens, windows and so much more. And yes, machinery will be all over the floor as well. The entire industry will be ALL IN ONE PLACE.
So there ya go; I ranted enough. If you want to be in the minority who miss the show, that’s your call. But I think you’d be making a big mistake, and I say that with years of experience of making mistakes. That includes back when I totally misunderstood how great this event and its people are.
Last, an extra incentive to sign up if you have not yet. There's a great opportunity to advance your own brand/company. One person will be chosen at random from everyone who registers this week. The winner will get a free video promotion from me for his or her organization. I will come to your location and/or jobsite, profile your company and shoot/edit/produce a high-end corporate video for use on YouTube and your personal website. No strings attached. This is one of my donations to the show effort and it will give you a chance to advance your brand image at my expense. The amazing registration staff at GlassBuild America will randomly choose the one winner, and I’ll make arrangements to get shooting…. And we’ll see you and the rest of the industry at the show! So click here to register now...
Read on for links and clip of the week...
The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.
The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.