The tables have turned for a time or in some cases for a long time. Mining activity has gone into decline and while there are still some $220 billion of investment in the pipeline, this is much reduced from the peak forecasts. Certainly the emphasis in the economy is switching from resources. Let's take a brief look at where the business focus for events companies needs to be, notwithstanding the overall market tightness and concerns about the September elections.
Both the Libs and Labor as well as other parties will be seeking to create advantage over their opponents in any way possible. This will be the case within a national context as well as at local levels / locations. Indeed perhaps the local pitches will become more important as marginal seats are contested and some new candidates get into the ring.
With the economy under pressure and interest rates likely to head even lower, banks, pseudo banks, super funds et al will all be competing to lend money, especially for property, and for your ready cash…various types of deposits. They see their business as managing liquidity but of course, everything they do relates to and is connected with people.
Have a think about how these giants are 'getting to their customers' and whether in fact at a regional and local level they are being effective. Doesn't that open some doors for you?
The property sector, including property developers and funds, both commercial and residential, has improved much since the worst of the GFC (as we called it) and searching for investors and buyers in Australia and overseas, particularly from Asia. Their projects are large and take time to implement and mature and there are many audiences they need to 'work' on during that period. As much as any business, they need some really fesh ideas to differentiate and drive home their propositions. It's an intensely competitive business. Start scanning the big ones first; and remember there are a lot of medium-sized projects anxious to start.
Just because retail is having difficulties doesn't mean its not active. Quite the contrary. Stimulating that buying mentality, freeing people from their shifting shoppers' negative sentiments are all real challenges and call for some clever creative ideas. Moreover, look at this opportunity through the eyes of stores, shopping centre operators, shopping centre owners, retail chains and new entrants to the market. And as I've said before, the major shifts into online shopping bring the opportunities that are related – after all, those businesses also need to differentiate and create experiential value/recognition – and a necessary response by those now placed under pressure.
We’ve recently covered some salient points about the retail sector and how there is a struggle to slow (if that’s possible), certainly contend with this shift to online. We’ve also made mention of the growth in Australia and overseas of globally branded and luxury goods, particularly in fashion. Whether sales revenues are through stores or online, these brands constantly seek to establish an edge and strengthen their followers’ loyalty – surely some openings there for talented, creative events companies.
IT and…or…ICT as you wish…that all-embracing chunk of the economy that is the life-blood for so much we all do and rely on. Take a minute to consider what the major drivers are up to, Microsoft, Google, VM, ESC, also IBM, Cisco, Intel – look at where they are placing their efforts and bets. Of course, they won’t always be right but for sure they will be pretty good on the directions. Personal, consumer, commercial and scientific work and leisure, graft and pleasure are being changed by new IT. The mission in part at least is for the developers and implementers to get their messages across, in a relevant, meaningful and hopefully entertaining fashion.
There you go!
And following on are the marketing and media sectors, embracing advertising through to presentation technologies, broadcast rights implementation through to sponsorships … this area is bursting as it restructures and re-focuses.
In the realm of exports from Australia and marketing into Asia, the big potential sectors are education, health, food, tourism and some business services. Consider your events company as part one who is an enabler in the marketing and promotion of these sectors, much as ICT has become the process and management enabler of many businesses.
Close to home, New Zealand has become a competitive and low cost centre of business. They have pushed through a reasonable tax reform way ahead of Australia and has moved from deficit to surplus. The economy, although without much in the way of natural resources, is sound. China is now one of the major sustaining legs on the economic stool – New Zealand is well-advanced in selling its food produce and promoting tourism. Maybe there’s a means of getting into an ‘Anzac’ events enterprise.
None of this is intended to swing you away from your current and recent areas of focus of business. It is intended, however, to help you consider different opportunities that may be outside your usual scanning while you cope with work that has to be done and a lot of competition swirling around the same ponds that you're in.
New Millennium Business is able to help you interpret and strategise around these enormous changes and opportunities.
Can you afford to let the market move on without you?