Adventures in Sales: Part 1

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This past Monday, three other students and I had the opportunity to attend the Buffalo Niagara Sales & Marketing Executives Student Day. Professor Dudkowski selected Kourtney Shearer, Danielle Board, Taylor Tracy, and myself to attend a day long conference, which included a choice of one of three tours, a special presentation by Bill Knoche, a networking opportunity, and a dinner presentation with Marc Adler. In order to do this amazing day justice, I have decided to split the blog post into three separate posts and will be sharing the rest of our amazing experience throughout the week.

Our day started off at 1:30 with a tour and the three tours we were able to select from were IIMAK, FB Display & Designs, and Rigidized Metals Corportation. IIMAK, a manufacturer of printing, imaging and marking consumable products with 1,000 employees worldwide. Headquartered in Amherst, New York, with additional manufacturing, distribution and sales operations in Belgium, Brazil and Mexico, IIMAK serves global needs for thermal transfer ribbons, direct thermal films, inkjet inks and related products.  FB Displays & Designs, Inc., is a full-service display and graphic design company. Their strength is “identifying and meeting our clients’ needs”. Their specialty is designing and constructing trade show displays and exhibits using modular components, thus creating flexibility, ease of setup and cost savings. Rigidized Metals Corporation lead ‘s the world in the development and production of deep-textured, three dimensional metals used in architectural, industrial and transportation applications. Rigidized® products are known for their attractive, economical and functional appeal. The Rigidized® process adds strength, impact resistance and the ability to hide scratches.

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We selected FB Displays & Design and it was a fantastic decision. We met with the wonderful owner, Francine Brooks. She told us about her company and then she showed us around the office. Francine started the company in 1994 after being a stay at home mom, selling jewelry and doing aerobics classes on the side. When her daughter went off to college, Francine decided to go back to work and after a brief stint with another design company she decided to go off on her own.  Francine started off in a garage and now has a large space located in Williamsville, just outside of Buffalo, NY, where she has eight full time employees and two interns, one’s name is Zach! The company has been around for over 20 years now and has over 1000 clients.

FB Displays & Design’s goal is to help their client achieve their goals from beginning to end and in helping them achieve their goal they are responsible for:

  • Custom Displays
  • Preshow campaign
  • Lead generation strategies
  • Post show follow up
  • Booth staff training
  • Inspector repair
  • Installation/ dismantle
  • Logistics
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Francine gave us wonderful insight about what it is like to
deal with clients and work in a creative industry, such as creating displays for trade shows.  Trade shows are a great way for a brand to stand out because it is a face to face marketing event and it is important to stand out at a trade show whether it is with bright colors, lights, or technology, such as iPad kiosks. When dealing with clients, it is crucial to establish a good relationship with your clients and make sure you are doing what’s best for them. Always have a dialogue going with your client going at all times. Remember to under promise and over deliver. Francine keeps a dialogue open with her clients and over delivers resulting in a very successful business.
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The four of us had an amazing time learning about different displays that are available to companies and brands. We also got some great ideas for displays for the 35th annual GCC Fashion Show! We enjoyed Francine and her employees. Francine said she loves coming into the office because it is a fun environment and the fun environment was definitely shown on the tour. The experience at FB Displays & Design was spectacular and we want to thank Francine Brooks for the fabulous opportunity!
Here are some photos of us enjoying the displays and standing with the wonderful, Francine:
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