The driving purpose of an executive briefing center
Communicate And Do It Well
According to the Association of Brieﬁng Program Managers (ABPM), the purpose of an Executive Brieﬁng Program is to plan brieﬁng sessions that will meet a potential customer’s needs and share the host company’s overall direction and product strategies with key customer executives and decision makers. In laymen’s terms, it’s a meeting designed to create understanding of a company’s products and their beneﬁts leading to highly strategic business conversations that greatly assist sales teams in accelerating, expanding, or closing sales opportunities.. These types of meetings are so specialized and focused that many companies are starting and/or have built facilities just for this very purpose, appropriately naming them Executive Brieﬁng Centers (EBC).
Now here’s the challenge: Along with the facility is usually a tour to lay the foundation of the host company’s brand story so customers or potential customers will ﬁnd answers to the question, “Why should we engage with this company and purchase their products?” This experience at the EBC is meant to deepen the sales relationship because every aspect of the environment–from the point of entry to a demonstration area, meeting room, or even a restroom–must clearly express the company’s brand story. It must immediately convey to the minds of visiting executives why they should engage with the host company and consider its offerings, but sometimes the digital exhibits created to tell the story don’t have a focused sales strategy behind them.
Sometimes there is too much information given, but not enough relevant information. Other times, a company’s brand story isn’t properly told and customers may leave more confused then enlightened. It’s not that the technology, digital signage, or content is subpar. In fact, it’s usually the opposite. The quality of each piece of content may be excellent, but the big question is, has the space and tour script of that EBC been strategically mapped out to integrate all the information resources and take potential customers through them in an engaging story-like fashion?
That’s why we believe the Executive Brieﬁng Center experience should feel like watching a good movie. One that not only informs and entertains audiences, but also emotionally connects prospects to a brand and moves them to the next step in the sales process.
How Your Executive Brieﬁng Center Can Flow Like A Good Movie
Each digital installation or exhibit within the EBC environment can strategically connect and ﬂow together to allow your audience to experience your brand story like they would a good movie.
Every good movie has an introduction. The characters, plot, scenario, and potential conﬂict are touched upon as a preview to what is to come. In the same manner, as audiences enter an EBC, they should immediately step into the world of the brand and be introduced to the brand story, the industries they serve, the main products or services they offer, and the challenges they solve. All of this relevant information should not overwhelm the audience, but give them a small taste of what is to come as they walk through the EBC.
Strong Plot (Story line)
Award-winning movies always have great story lines and we believe that successful brands do as well. That unique story needs to be told and experienced in the EBC as the space is dedicated to showcase the brand. In this day and age, however, it’s not good enough to tell a good story. Technology-Savvy audiences expect companies to let them experience the story. Don’t just tell them. Show them with each exhibit that they enter and let them be touched by the brand itself.
Climax (Conflict and Resolution)
In every good story there’s a climax–the height of the story, that crucial moment when the hero must ﬁght to win against all odds or lose it all. In the same way for an EBC experience, there should be an “aha” moment when the company’s brand story makes believers out of skeptics and loyalists out of touch-and-go users. It’s the central conﬂict that must be solved by the ﬂagship product or service.
Every EBC should have an area in their tour that leads audiences to the big solutions that the brand and its products or services solve both locally and globally. This is the best opportunity to drive home the brand’s main selling points, connect with prospects on an emotional level, and create the climactic experience of the whole EBC.
The McKesson Vision Center: Taking Audiences On A World Class Executive Brieﬁng Center Journey
McKesson, a leading pharmaceutical distribution and healthcare systems technology company, created a world class executive brieﬁng center in their San Francisco headquarters with the brilliant strategy of taking audiences on a storytelling, movie-like journey.
Visitors who enter the McKesson Vision Center are greeted by a history of the company’s origins in 1833 with artifacts and original relics from that era on display. It’s not a large installation, but just enough to set the context for the story they want to tell about the company’s legacy and it’s vision for the future.
The journey then continues with each exhibit station revealing the company’s mission, services, processes, and industry-changing innovations complete with facts and statistics. Each station is meant to inspire and evoke those “feel good” emotions resident within each visitor.
The tour ends in an open area with seating for further discussions or meetings and near the place where the tour started, giving audiences closure and a positive reminder of the company’s humble beginnings, but bright vision for the future.
Bring It Home With A Strong Conclusion
The last thing that impactful movies have is a strong closing. This is what makes audiences clap when the movie is over and leave with smiles or tears on their faces.
It’s an emotional connection that makes them feel something and want to see more. The EBC experience should be strategized and executed in such a way that audiences want to see more or come back and visit again because an emotional connection with the brand has been made. It should empower the sales representatives to continue the sales conversation and help close the deal in the near future because the audience has literally been “branded” by what they experienced touring the EBC that day.
At Array, we believe every EBC should take their customers and prospects on a branded experiential journey that makes an emotional connection, leaves a lasting impression, and endears them to the brand like a great movie does. Of course, actually closing the sale as a result of touring the EBC isn’t too bad either.
We’re available to help script and direct that movie-like experience for your EBC if you ever need it. Heck, we might even show up with some popcorn.
About the authors:
Jeff Dumo is one of the founders of Array Interactive. He currently leads the agency’s client growth strategies, providing digital communications insight to some of the world’s foremost brands. Jeff is an active member of the digital signage and marketing community, serving as a committee member, speaking, or advising for industry organizations such as Digital Signage Expo and Society of Environmental Graphic Design. Jeff is also a member of the Society of Digital Marketing Innovators, a network and voice for entrepreneurs and innovators around the globe who are creating the future of marketing and digital experiences.
Hoa Tong, Creative Director, Array Interactive Hoa delivers impactful creative solutions for digital signage and experiential marketing initiatives and co-leads the agency’s Digital Creative Team. Hoa has won several ADDY awards and a Business Marketing Association award over his creative career. He pulls on his diverse experiences as a ﬁlm buff, former break dancer, musician, sports lover, and world traveler to demand creative that demands attention.