Small business: Event organisers - Amanda Magnus

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Amanda Magnus, Exhibition Director, Exhibitions and Events New Zealand.
Amanda Magnus, Exhibition Director, Exhibitions and Events New Zealand.

Amanda Magnus, Exhibition Director, Exhibitions and Events New Zealand (EENZ), whose portfolio includes Auckland Home Show, Canterbury Home Show and Rebuild & Renovate Christchurch Home Show.

What is the events business like in the current economy?

We have found this year far more positive business wise.

How easy is it to transfer an event idea to another country like Australia?

It's not that simple at all. You must look at local trends, cultural differences, events already in existence which may be similar, venue availability and so on.

What industries are you working with in the events you run?

We run Home Shows, so we liaise with associations within the building, renovations, kitchens and bathrooms and interior design industries.

How do you stay in touch with them at other times of the year?

We regularly contact all our partners and customers throughout the year. As our events are all annual, there is not much time between each one when we're not communicating.

What sort of feedback do you get from event exhibitors? What is a success for them?

Success for exhibitors is getting great ROI and increasing their brand awareness.
Success for us is bringing people together to do business. Lots of motivated buyers equal lots of happy exhibitors.

How do you come up with ideas for new events? How long does it take to get a new event underway?

We are very fortunate to run the two longest running Home Shows in New Zealand. We launched the Rebuild & Renovate Christchurch Home Show earlier this year due to demand from our local clients in Christchurch which is a somewhat unique situation. Usually you would do extensive pre-show launch research on the total market size, total market value, venue availability and suitable dates. A lot goes into running a successful event and we have over 100 years of experience just within EENZ.

What happens to make you decide an event is no longer worthwhile? Or right for the market?

Visitor numbers decline, exhibitor numbers decline or the subject matter is no longer relevant.

What else is key to doing the events business well?

I personally have been in the exhibition industry for over 23 years and it definitely takes a certain type of person to thrive in this industry. Many people believe they would like to work in the events industry as they perceive it to be perhaps glamorous and exciting, the reality is it can be very rewarding and also exhausting, chaotic, crazy and stressful. As Ashton Kutcher recently said: "Success looks a lot like hard work"! Very true of the events world.


Next week: We tend to associate corporate retreats or company conferences as something only for big companies. But for successful and fast growing SMEs,an informal getaway with your staff can be incredibly fruitful and doesn't have to cost the earth. Tell us how you get together with staff out of work.

I am especially interested in how internationally active New Zealand businesses manage to get their staff from all over the world together from time to time.

- NZ Herald

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