By Chris Faulknor, Publisher
The Boyne Business Expo is on Thursday, April 25, and I recommend that everyone show up.
It’s not often that I use my column to promote an event, so let me tell you why this one is so unique.
First of all, there is something there for everyone.
• If you rely on business-to-business sales, you have close to 100 business owners as a captive audience standing in an orderly fashion next to their booths.
It’s simply a matter of approaching them, learning about what their business does, and figuring out how (or if) your product is something they need and how to get them on board.
If you’re a business and rely on your consumers, this is a great way to find more.
Pack a few hundred business cards (we print those, by the way—call me) and get involved.
Last year, over 1000 people attended the Boyne Business Expo, and as they walked around the room, they learned about dozens of businesses that they may not have known existed if they hadn’t come to this event.
• Do you enjoy beer and fine wines?
They will once again have a station where you can get your own mug (or plastic cup in this case) of a Michigan-made beer.
In addition, there will be a booth with locally made wines (and by locally, I mean 10 miles from here).
Yes, some people do come for the free food, and let me tell you, it’s worth the trip.
The samples aren’t like the “Free Sample” booth at Wal-Mart; in fact, they’re closer to “small portions,” because with all of the tasting booths, you can easily leave full and happy.
So now that I’ve given you a commercial, why am I really so hopeful that you’ll come?
Well, I’ve made a lot of friends and business contacts in the Boyne business community, and that’s where I’ve met so many of them.
In fact, many of the friends I’ve made throughout Boyne will be there to showcase their businesses—their bread and butter—and I want you to see what they have to offer.
I’m hoping you’ll come because I’ll be there, and I want you to see the display I’m brewing for Boyne Ink, the printing side of our operations which we unveiled this year.
I attended the first Boyne Business Expo in 2009.
This was before The Boyne City Gazette was launched, and I was nervous.
The idea of starting a Boyne City based business was new, fresh, and kind of scary.
The large crowd at the Expo, however, was welcoming.
The people in attendance weren’t the “typical” business folk I was worried about, people who would see me for who I felt I really was, young and inexperienced.
No, these people were encouraging, happy, and fun.
They weren’t bragging up their products and handing out samples trying to close a sale, they were laughing, harassing their neighboring booths, and joking around with passers by.
We don’t have a typical business community here in Boyne City, and it makes me proud to be here.
We have business owners who help one another.
We have businesses that are up and coming, and by working together, our town will rise together.
This is the real reason to stop by on April 25: because I want you to walk into that building and feel the sense of community that I felt.
I want you to watch two competing realtors joke with each other even though they are in competition the rest of the time.
I want you to see everyone setting up their things and passing around tape and thumbtacks, because nobody ever brings everything they need.
This isn’t just a trade show, it’s an exhibition of what our business community is all about, and I’m hoping you’ll experience it with me this year.
Oh, and before I forget our final commercial, we made a magazine-style guide for it that also features your local business neighbors.
This guide has everything from a full-color map to specials from our local business community.
Pick one up at your local businesses, or simply stop by the Chamber office or at the Gazette.