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Crowd Connected partner with us in the Middle East

By | Blog, Business support | No Comments

UK location technology business Crowd Connected has signed a partnership agreement with Grown-Up Solutions in the Middle East.

Crowd Connected’s unique Colocator platform crowd sources real-time location data, turning it into insight in milliseconds. This insight allows event, hospitality and retail venues to model guest behaviour, brought to life via an intuitive web console. On-site operations can be optimised through smarter and faster decision making, delivering distinct service and revenue advantages.

The platform also includes an audience engagement and segmentation engine, delivering unparalleled geo-targeted and trigger-based messaging capability. Messages can be sent to audience groups based on any combination of location and time, including where they are, where they have been, how many times they’ve visited certain locations, or where they haven’t yet been. This level of targeting allows relevant communications to be sent to specific audience groups, increasing engagement and enhancing the customer experience whilst avoiding message overload.

Colocator solutions are low cost and quickly deployable, and don’t require expensive hardware infrastructure. By sourcing location rather than proximity data, the platform can deliver data, messaging and insight over large physical spaces with no loss of accuracy.

Grown-Up Solutions will provide local support and facilitation for Crowd Connected in the Middle East region, providing a cost-effective route to market.

Mike Smith, Director at Grown-Up Solutions says “We’ve been operating in the region for a number of years and are very excited to be representing Crowd Connected in the Middle East. They’ve got a great platform that is incredibly relevant to this market, where a deep understanding of audience behaviour is often the key differentiator between success and failure.”

Mark Maydon, Commercial Director at Crowd Connected, adds “Grown-Up Solutions have data measurement and analysis as one of their core services, and they really understand the potential advantages that our Colocator platform can offer. We look forward to supporting clients in the Middle East as the region continues to grow over the coming years.”

Talent matters, so attract the best

By | Blog, Business support | No Comments

Written by Alex Keighley

Despite the relentless rise of technology disrupting aspects of business, and artificial intelligence becoming ever more intelligent, people are as crucial to success as ever. Look at any list of challenges facing business today and there’s one thing you won’t find missing in any of them. Against the backdrop of political instability, the unpredictable cycle of macro-economics or keeping up with the relentless charge of globalisation, how to recruit and retain highly capable, engaged and diverse talent is ever-present. People are almost inevitably a business’s most important but least stable asset; yet no matter how many CEO’s espouse the importance of their employees, levels of employee engagement are frighteningly low.

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The most powerful word in business

By | Blog, Business support | No Comments

I’ve been running businesses here in the UK and the USA for over 35 years and over this period, as you would imagine, one learns many things from the day to day activities and the interaction with one’s employees and clients.

We are all keen to provide rapid responses and solutions to our clients’ problems and issues but I have learned that to act in haste can cost you dearly. We all have those clients who call at the last minute and have a special requirement, saying this is a one-off occurrence etc. etc. Our first response is to take down all the relevant information, engage the efforts of our colleagues to help with the task in hand and often leave the financial element to the end only to find out the client does not have the appropriate budget or wants a special deal this one time as they will make it up to us on the next project.

I have lost count of the hundreds of times this has happened to me.

So many years ago, while suffering another of these Friday night “Oh my God I need it here yesterday” episodes, I took a step back and thought through what was actually happening.

I asked myself a series of questions…

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The Middle East is growing up

By | Blog, Business support | 2 Comments

There was a time, a few years ago, when the get-rich-quick tales from Dubai were true.  You could go out there, have a Ferrari within a year, and get a penthouse and a boat the year after.

Those times are gone.

They are gone because all that was built on credit.  They are gone because Dubai, as part of the UAE, has grown-up.

They are even introducing VAT in 2018, but personal and corporate income will remain tax-free for the time being.

Because it’s matured, the opportunities are still there but they are more of a long-game than a quick win.

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There’s no such thing as big data…

By | Blog, Data analysis | No Comments

…if you work in the hospitality and events industry.

Big data became something of a buzzword in 2016 but the term is overused and generic when in fact it has quite a specific meaning.  According to Wikipedia, big data is ‘a term for data sets that are so large or complex that traditional data processing applications are inadequate to deal with them.’

You don’t have big data.  What you have is lots of data, which presents its’ own challenges and opportunities but it is not ‘big data’.  You’ll have data on your finances, on your customers and their behaviour, on your social media, pipeline, forecasts, the performance of your team.  Everything is measured and measurable, if you use the right metrics, and it all creates data.

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Grown-Up Solutions to launch in the Middle East

By | Blog, Business support, Data analysis, Project management | No Comments

Grown-Up Solutions will be opening an office in Dubai in November to better serve our existing client base and to support new business opportunities in the UK and Middle East.

Launched in the UK in 2014, we have worked with a range of clients including a Premiership football club where we introduced processes that increased hospitality sales volume by 14% and spend per head by 26%.

The Grown-Ups have also acted as intermediaries for merger and acquisition discussions, carrying out due-diligence work and representing one party as local agent.

The company is currently working with a celebrity chef, ensuring the behind-the-scenes management structure is in place to support his future career.

As Director Mike Smith explains, ‘With my background in the Middle East it’s a natural extension to establish a presence in Dubai.  The event and hospitality sector is already used to working internationally but with Brexit coming up there is an increasing opportunity for businesses in this sector to explore new opportunities and trade links.  Opening the new office will enable us to offer enhanced services to our existing clients as well as giving us the opportunity to support new clients in the region.’

Zero-hour contracts are not a bad thing

By | Blog, Business support | One Comment

There has been a lot of coverage in the press recently around zero-hour contracts, most of it negative.  We hear how they are used by business to exploit their workforce, how they lead to uncertainty over pay and distort employment figures.  There are even calls for them to be banned.

I’m going to stick my neck out here and make a clear statement.  Zero-hour contracts, in themselves, are not a bad thing.  It is their misuse that causes the problems.

Let’s look at the pros and cons.

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Living Wage – good or bad for our industry?

By | Blog, Business support

Following the Living Wage announcement in the Budget yesterday there have been mixed reactions from the Events and Hospitality industries.  Ufi Ibrahim from the British Hospitality Association has been quoted in both trade press and national media which are interpreting her comments as negative.  Ufi is disappointed that the Chancellor made his announcement without consulting our industry but can we really expect the Government to ask our opinion every time they make a change, especially when there is a political point-scoring opportunity at stake? Read More

Surviving Brexit

By | Blog, Business support

Brexit.  It’s not just a word, it’s a ‘thing’.  It’s a movement, a belief, a challenge, an opportunity.  It’s also definitely happening.

Exactly what it means for our industry, and for the country as a whole, will become clear over the coming months.  I personally believe we will prosper.  Yes, there will be some short term pain.  Yes, there will be some political mudslinging.  But yes, we can do this.  We will do this.  We will be better, stronger, more competitive, more prosperous, more influential. Read More

Sustainability – make it count

By | Blog, Business support

Sustainability is getting a lot of coverage in the trade press at the moment but I can’t help but think that we are putting a sticking plaster on a broken leg.  Re-usable cups, LED festoon and disposable catering serviceware are all positive but are they really addressing the bigger picture? Read More