An International Parking Jam Up


An International Parking Jam Up

Its shaping up to be an exciting fall for Parking around the world. In the three weeks beginning September 28, there are major parking events in New Zealand, Canada, Brasil, Abu Dhabi, and Boston. In order, the New Zealand Parking Association is holding its annual meeting, The Canadian Parking Association is gathering in Whistler, BC, Expo Urbano, the largest urban exhibition in South America including parking will be underway in Rio, The Third Middle East Parking Symposium is slated for Abu Dhabi, and of course the National Parking Association has its Show of Shows in Boston. If you want the exact dates, go to our web site.

Why should I care, you say? I’m a Canadian and heading for British Columbia, there’s no conflict. Fair enough. However what if you were the Marketing Director for Skidata, Scheidt and Bachmann, Digital Payment Technologies, Parkeon, Metric, Zeag or any one of a couple of dozen other international companies that literally pay the freight for these organizations. Where are you going to send your resources? Which event do you personally attend? Do you turn your back on the Canadians, or an entire continent in South America. What about your dealer/representatives in Dubai or Saudi? Are you going to support them?

The problem is always the same. Planners for trade events look at their region and say “whoppie” nothing is going on in Canada (or New Zealand or the US, or Brasil) in October, so it’s a perfect time to hold our meeting. They don’t look beyond their borders.

Major suppliers, and speakers, for that matter, have to plan their lives differently. If a revenue control manufacturer, for instance, wants to show their products at each of these events, that means they have to have five demonstrations units, five booth set ups, five teams of personnel to support the local folks on the ground. Of course they don’t. So they must make decisions. Where will be put our resources? Who is more important to our market? Which group brings us the best bang for or Buck, Euro, or Real? I can just hear someone say “Hell, we just spend a fortune in Vegas at the IPI, let’s pull back on our booth at the NPA and CPA, and expand our market reach in the Middle East, or South America.” This costs the local organizations money, and makes for a smaller event. Not good.

There is another issue == Parking is a relatively small industry with a relatively small number of experts to speak on major parking issues. Having events scheduled simultaneously means fewer resources to present, teach, and bring information to these events.

What’s the solution? The world is getting smaller and smaller. Companies want to reach out to more and more markets with fewer and fewer resources. Timing of these events is critical. We have a solution – stay tuned – watch this blog.


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John Van Horn

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