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TLMI Tackles Global Issues

ORLANDO, FL — The joint meeting of the Tag and Label Mfrs. Inst., Naperville, IL, and FINAT, The Hague, Netherlands, addressed some hot global-oriented topics. Held October 8-11 at the JW Marriott Grande Lakes Resort in Orlando, the annual meeting kicked off with a tabletop exhibit that allowed converters and suppliers to network professionally and socially.

During the following two days, attendees tackled some serious topics, including declining margins, price pressures, enlisting new and retaining current association members, and competing in a global environment. The possibility of membership expansion beyond North American borders also was suggested.

As keynote, Duane Knapp of BrandStrategy addressed brand marketing. Knapp is the author of The BrandMindset, published by McGraw-Hill, and has an energetic approach to business. Brands he's advised include Sunkist, Embassy Suites, AAA, Bloomingdale's, and Cinnabon. Knapp's philosophy focuses on a “BrandPromise” to create a genuine brand.

His five-step plan is straightforward: 1. Assess your brand's perception. 2. Determine what your brand should promise. 3. Develop a brand blueprint to communicate your brand. 4. Rule that each employee must understand and adopt the BrandPromise within the framework of a brand culture. 5. Establish how to nurture, enhance, and innovate the brand.

Anthony Gibson, management director for many Leo Burnett clients, offered attendees a laundry list of helpful tips as companies weigh the pros and cons of opening offshore offices to expand their marketing presence. Rounding out this session were personal experiences from an international panel of label converting experts, including Alex Mulvenny Sr. (Labelgraphics Glasgow Ltd.), FINAT president David Harrisson (Skanem AS), Bill Donovan Jr. (Dow Industries), Lane Kagey (LGInternational), Scott Fisher (WS Packaging Group), and Geoff Martin (CCL Label).

On the final day, Jake Poor of Integrated Loyalty Systems offered strategies on how a company can be labeled a world-class service leader by its customers. He emphasized the importance of strategy development, cultural transformation, service development, process improvement, and leadership development.

Meeting co-chairs included Michael Keliher of FLEXcon, Ferd Rüesch Jr. of Gallus Ferd Rüesch AG, and Calvin Frost of The Channeled Resources Group. The concluding reception, awards dinner, and dancing topped off the meeting in a memorable manner.

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