RAY’S BLOG INTRODUCTION
My name is Raymond Ramsay, I’m the President and CEO of Raymond Ramsay & Associates. I have been in the special event industry since 1970. Over the years my companies and I have produced well over 10,000 events with a team of over 190 talented designers, fabricators, coordinators, and talented performers.
I have never had a day where I wasn’t creating a cutting-edge event for clients throughout the United States and other countries. You’ve probably never heard of my company or our accomplishments over the years. About five years ago, my team came to me and said that they felt we needed to submit some of our productions up for awards. I was resistant to do that as I believe this industry should spend 5 minutes knowing who within the Special Event Industry are driving the industry forward. I also believe that not enough time is being spent on the companies and individuals who initially built the Special Events Industry into what it is today. My mantra has always been “You can’t predict your future until you come to terms with your past” That observation aside, I reluctantly agreed to have someone on my team submit some of our events for international awards. The results were incredible. Over the next five years, we received 13 nominations and five awards from the special event, ILEA, and Biz Bash. We also took team building to a whole new level, by receiving four Guinness World Records! With our earned world records, we were able to give back to the communities. We also have the record for getting the most Guinness World Records in 90 minutes.
As I’m writing this blog, I feel that other than Biz Bash, the special event industry is being somewhat short changed in delivering cutting edge ideas and systems that would help the special event professional truly grow their creativity and market share in their geographic locations.
I understand that there are forums outside of the national conferences that provide presenters who address these issues. I feel that while these presenters are strong in identifying event trends, marketing strategies, as well, creative approaches to competing in their market, they are unable to separate themselves from their competitors. Nor do they provide presenters other than special event professionals who are providing new thinking and approaches to the special events industry.
I’m not trying to say that the “Special Event” or ILEA has not done its best to try and provide informative breakouts and speakers, learning how Lady Gaga approaches her marketing or how to build a brand is interesting and informative, but it lacks practicality and targets a narrow section of the industry: those at the beginning or the peak of their careers. Speakers with practical topics could be teaching attendees how to investigate how they can grow their business through strategic alliances; how to utilize student designers and fabricators in your market; how to use educational institutions to help create new ideas and events utilizing; or how to budget their business so it’s attractive to lending institutions, can be used by all, not just the select few and can be highly profitable for everyone involved.
There are people who are making a difference in our industry. The purpose of this blog is to share fresh ideas and expose you to these individuals, as well as companies and their founders. I will share stories about how these industry professionals took a themed industry from crepe paper cascading from the ceiling with themed centerpieces and colored table cloths, to what you experience today.
You will learn how my friends and I took two card tables and a rental generator into an abandoned building with $150.00 and built the largest full-service destination management company in the southeastern United States with an annual revenue well into the middle eight figures.
In the months ahead, my blog will provide the tools and systems to ultimately show you how to reposition yourself in your market and substantially increase your close ratio.
So why haven’t you heard of me? In my 48 years in the business, I have virtually never advertised in any industry magazine or attended an industry conference that wasn’t in my city of operation. In the early days I did attend USAE, MPI, and PSMA when I was chosen to either do their opening reception or opening General Session – which I have done for all of them.
In closing, I am confident that the value I provide on my blog will help you grow your business in the weeks, months, and years going forward.