Aberdeen has had its fair share of doom and gloom of late, with the continual drop in oil prices, operators and suppliers cutting back and everyone feeling the pinch – even local restaurants have expressed their struggle to stay on track.
The press have forecast a loss of more than 23,000 jobs by 2020 in the North Sea and there doesn’t seem to be much on the horizon for people who once said they ‘hadn’t been affected by the global recession’.
However, as Team Denvir (Victoria, Ali, Eloise, Charlotte, Gary and Nicky) took to the halls at this year’s SPE Offshore Europe it was apparent that not everyone was feeling down trodden by the current market place.
With more than 55,000 people attending the event and 336 companies taking to the stands, 2015 was a year no one would forget.
At first we heard tales of “oh it’s so quiet this year”, “I’ve never seen it so empty” – bearing in mind it was 9.32am on Tuesday morning, – to “I think this might have been the best year yet” by 2.30pm on Friday, it was certainly a year for split opinions.
With clients like Plexus exhibiting and Scrabster, RQT Precision Engineering and Ocean Kinetics, to name but a few, attending, our week was a fun fill plethora of design, print, stands and collateral.
Strutting around in our orange pashminas we took to the 27,228m2 exhibition floor with gusto. Running from the media room, to a stand before heading to the OETV van to arrange interviews – there wasn’t a moment to sit down.
With more than 11 key note sessions, 80 SPE technical paper presentations and daily topic launches the event was not just an exhibition of companies flashing their wares but a really informative educational showcase with more than 5000 delegates attending its conference plenary session.
From a marketing perspective we saw some outstanding examples of marketing genius and we also saw some ‘interesting’ examples, which could have perhaps benefitted from more thoughtful and insightful marketing to be more impactful and get the cut-through they were after. Large grand stands which delivered the wow factor and small spaces which were equally as eye-catching were both intriguing and made us think.
From what we were lead to believe, from talk in the street prior to the exhibition, this show was to be quiet, with low marketing budgets, no merchandise or sales collateral and drinks receptions at a minimum but in our opinion this year’s SPE Offshore Europe bucked the trend. Proving that people truly see the importance of marketing in a difficult economy.
Everyone we met was jovial, happy and full of chit-chat. There were the occasional moans and groans about the current climate (we aren’t talking weather here!) but generally people were buzzing. There was comaraderie and in some cases hilarious examples of turf wars between adjoining stands.
This is a true example of the human spirit. We are a tough old lot who not only fight through the hard time but we do it with humour, humility and above all with each other.