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David Squires

Day Zero at the Smart Show



Yesterday was “Day Zero” at the SMART Show — our annual pre-show day of education conferences, featuring our biggest pre-show slate yet with 43 sessions, including our brand new (and instantly popular) “SMART Friends” program. “Day Zero” is always a little strange at Navy Pier — with the cold winds from the open doors on the delivery bay, and the roaring forklifts on the show floor. But we had big crowds, lots of packed sessions, and we’re ready to go. Today at 8:30, we have our keynote from marketing guru Martin Lindstrom, and then at 10 am, we cut the ribbon and the fifth annual SMART Show Chicago begins.

A hodgepodge of thoughts from the day:

Retailers are having lots of fun — while creating cool and useful marketing collateral — in the Smart Photo Studio in Room 324. Best prop? Our collection of photo frames. Keep your eye out for pictures at

&#8220 Don’t be in the jewelry
business, be in the
relationship business. &#8221

Lots of great data on brides and grooms from The Knot’s Carley Roney, which Ralf Kircher will be sharing in greater depth in his blog today. One key, non-data-related point Carley made that resonated with me: “Don’t be in the jewelry business, be in the relationship business.” That’s a great way to redraw in your mind what you actually do.


I saw lots of heads nodding around the room when she said that.

Learned two important Facebook don’ts from Shane O’Neill. 1.) Don’t use voting contests in an effort to increase your Facebook fans. (Examples of voting contests: the picture or YouTube video with the most likes wins a prize.) Such contests are targets for “contest pigs”, people who professionally enter contests. And they’ll win your contest every time. 2.) Don’t try to use “fan-gated” pages to generate likes. (Example: “like this page, and we’ll let you see that page”.)

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