Thursday, May 03, 2007

Report from the Alamo -- TPMA in San Antonio

Another excellent meeting for TPMA -- the organization continues to build momentum. There were, as at previous meetings, good presentations from a bunch of smart people.

Metrics dominated the agenda, as it is dominating much discussion in all areas of marketing these days. The first day started with a keynote address by Dale Hagemeyer of Gartner and a manufacturer panel discussion on metrics, and the second day concluded with a presentation of a survey on trade promo practices by Chris Wiesen of SAP.

But metrics wasn't everything. Nationwide Insurance (Dennis Disser and Greg Cheslock) looked at another perennial topic, collaboration, from a new perspective. We usually think of collaboration in terms of the giants -- how do we build a collaborative relationship with Wal-Mart and Best Buy? -- but Natiowide has a customer base of thousands of small, independent dealers (in their case, agents) and approaches collaboration through regional groups. This is a seldom-discussed topic and is worth exploring further.

Collaboration will be the principal topic at the TPMA annual conference here in Chicago this October. Set aside October 7-10. I'll post more info on the meeting as the agenda develops.

Oh yeah, we had fun, too:

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