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BRANDING VKOZ


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WELCOME In order to complete the curriculum of the degree of Bachelor of

Arts at the University of Applied Sciences Breda, I conducted a

research on corporate events in Rotterdam. The outcome of the research will be detailed advice for marketing communication implements in order to support the new strategy of VKOZ, which

15 JUNE 2018, ROTTERDAM

AUTHOR AMY PIETERSE 131391

GRINDHEUVEL 10 5685AT BEST

backs up the transition from freelancer to entrepreneur. As

marketing is an important aspect of creating a strong brand a big focus will be on marketing communication.

IN COOPERATION WITH

I am highly thankful to my project supervisor Marjolein van

SCHIENCES

Rosmalen for her support, guidance and the opportunity to

conduct the research in name of VKOZ. Her transparency,

NHTV UNIVERSITY OF APPLIED ARCHIMEDESSTRAAT 17 BREDA

enthusiasm and share of knowledge supported me creating this plan. Next to that I would specifically thank De Filmmakelaar for his help finding enterprises for the interviews as well as

introducing me on the event of MKB Rotterdam RIjnmond. Last

but not least, a big thank you to all companies which shared all their needs, wants and experiences on events with me.

VKOZ EVENTS & COMMUNICATIE COOLSINGEL 120 3011AG

ROTTERDAM

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CONTENTS BACKGROUND

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VKOZ

PROBLEM ANALYSIS

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FIRST & PIONEERS PHASE

ROTTERDAM

STARTING-UP VKOZ

REASON FOR RESEARCH

PERIOD OF GROWTH

MANAGEMENT PROBLEM

FROM FREELANCE TO ENTERPRENEUR SECOND & ORGANIZATIONAL PHASE BUILDING A BUSINESS CONCLUSION PROBLEM DEFINITION PROBLEM OBJECTIVE RESEARCH QUESTIONS

RESULTS

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CONCLUSIONS

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WHAT DOES THE BRAND EQUITY OF VKOZ

WHAT DOES THE BRAND EQUITY OF VKOZ

LOOKS-LIKE?

LOOKS-LIKE?

WHAT ARE THE NEEDS AND WANTS

WHAT ARE THE NEEDS AND WANTS

ENTERPRISES RELATED TO CORPORATE

ENTERPRISES RELATED TO CORPORATE

EVENTS?

EVENTS?

WHAT ARE THE HIGLHY VALUED

WHAT ARE THE HIGLHY VALUED

DISTRIBUTION CHANNELS?

DISTRIBUTION CHANNELS? RECOMMENDATIONS & ORGANISATIONAL GOALS

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THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK DISCUSSION OF LITERATURE

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RESEARCH METHODS

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RESEARCH DESIGN / METHODOLOGY

CONCEPTUAL MODEL

MARKETING COMMUNCATION PAGE 66 CRITICAL REFLECTION

PAGE 98

SHORT TERM IMPLEMENTATIONS LONG TERM IMPLEMENTATIONS ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITY BUDGET EVALUATION

BIBLIOGRAPHY

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ASSESSMENT

PAGE 110

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Creating a strong brand around VKOZ This research is conducted to provide VKOZ with more insight into VKOZ as a brand, core competencies

and the needs and wants of corporate enterprises related to corporate events. This research was done in order to create a new strategy which will result in a new client-fit marketing communication plan to

strengthen the visibility and awareness of VKOZ as an expert in corporate event management. A stronger brand awareness will have a positive influence on the growth of VKOZ from a single-person organisation to a business with employees. Within a single-person structure the focus is on the person,

in this case Marjolein van Rosmalen, while during growth this will change to a business-focus. At the moment big companies contact VKOZ as they know and choose Marjolein because of her experience and knowledge wherefore most communication is inbound. Nevertheless, corporate enterprises in all

sizes are wanted to be attracted, wherefore outbound communication is required. Creating a stronger brand around VKOZ with support of a new marketing communication approach, will create more brand

awareness under corporate enterprises which will result to more requests for the organisation of business events.

Everything we need and want is based and influenced by our beliefs and values. With those in mind we

decided what we find important and expect from a specific product or service. Therefore, it is important for a company to know its core competencies and qualities in order to find a connection with the target group and to be able to respond to their needs and wants. In order to create a successful marketing communication plan it is important to know what is going on in field of corporate enterprises and their

events. For example the traditional channels are changing from offline to online. Also the strategies are changing into telling an honest story and share experiences and knowledge. These changes in strategy

and communicating have an influence on the behaviour of people. But how is this influence on corporate enterprises and specifically within the Rotterdam region? What are their needs and wants in regard to an event agency and the organization of an event? Which are the most effective channels to reach the corporate enterprises?

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BACKGROUND In order to get an insight into the reason for this research the context will be discovered. Since the research is out of name of VKOZ some more information on VKOZ and Rotterdam will be provided in order to state the reason for research and management problem.

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VKOZ After fifteen years in the field of business travel and events, Marjolein van Rosmalen started with VKOZ. Within those fifteen years she worked for companies such as ATP and Carlson Wagonlit Travel, with clients

all over the world and in different branches such as Shell and Philips. Next to the work experiences, the

believe arose for personal attention, thinking along with clients and cooperation in order to reach their (strategic) goals. This believe, her qualities and experiences came together in 2010 under the name of VKOZ.

From ‘Vrouwelijke Kijk Op Zaken’ to VKOZ The name VKOZ is short for ‘Vrouwelijke Kijk Op Zaken’, which means the female perspective on businesses.

The name was based on the experience of the owner in general and her experiences in the different working styles and perspectives between men and women. Especially in the beginning the focus was on this

phenomenon, but after a few years and more event requests focussing specifically on that fade out. Nevertheless, the decision needed to be made to continue with the name or not. Over the years Marjolein

van Rosmalen created a broad network, which is familiar with VKOZ and with the change of name lots of

them will get lost. Therefore, was chosen to go along with the abbreviation, but the logo and tagline changed into a more firm and tough logo, with an eye which represents her strong eye for details.

“Surprise, connect and inspire”

The mission of VKOZ is: “Going for the best possible customer experience, so that you reach your goals

without any worries”. This is the guiding principle for everything done and every event organized. VKOZ aims to help thinking for result-oriented solutions and to turn creative ideas into concrete action. The fifteen years of work experience within the management of business and event industry contribute to the owner’s ability of selecting the best freelancers for the project and analysing the company’s assignment, in order to have

the most effective project- and process management. Over the years she specialized herself in project- and interim management in dynamic organizations in different sectors, such as the government and

multinationals, all over the world. A study, teamwork with a diverse range of professionals, and her own experiences contributed to strengthen her strong characteristics, which are needed for VKOZ: managing teams, keep track of the processes, attention for internal communication and details. Based on the event

and wanted outcome a team will be selected out off a diverse range of freelancers, guided by the owner of VKOZ, Marjolein van Rosmalen. A guiding principle for the team is the mentality of Rotterdam; direct,

transparent, hardworking and a hands-on approach. Since VKOZ is located in Rotterdam and most of its clients too, this mentality fits the needs and wants of most of the clients. However, not only in Rotterdam this mentality is highly valued, but all international and national clients respect this work approach. Unique selling points 

Transparent

VKOZ is a small company and therefore easy to have a transparent structure. There are no different managers and departments involved and therefore it is clear who and what to expect. 

Customized team

Since VKOZ works with a broad range of freelancers, per request the best customer-fit team can be selected. 

Co-creation

VKOZ searches for possibilities within the company which could be of use for the event, there is the aim to cooperate with each other. This can be possibilities like use of staff or connections, what will lead to less costs as no external party is needed to be hired.

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Cross-over VKOZ has experiences in different sectors in relation to event management. This contributed to the ability of thinking outside the box and create new ideas.

Four services

VKOZ divided the event process into four categories from concept to event. This breakdown shows that VKOZ is able to also take responsibility for one aspect of the total process, when the company has an employee focussing on the concept already, but missing the knowledge and experience for the execution for example.

“I KNOW MARJOLEIN AS A ENERGETIC AND CREATIVE ENTERPRENEUR, WHO LIKES TO THINK ALONG WITH YOU AND START IMMEDIATELY. SHE SHARES HER THOUGHTS AND DOES WHAT SHE SAYS” Target groups

SANDRA STAD – TEMPO TEAM PROFESSIONALS

At the moment the events and products can be categorized within two main target groups: primair and secundair. Most of the focus is on primairy focus groups as they are, due to big assignments and clients, of high value for VKOZ. Primair

Business field, especially big companies and organizations

Big companies are at the moment the biggest group of clients for VKOZ. Even though, most of the big

companies do have an event department included, they reach out to event agencies for help. For companies freelance event managers are of high value during busy periods or when their own event manager malfunctions for some reason.

Government and governmental organizations

One of the main clients are the government and its organizations. For years VKOZ is part of a project team of organizers or communication. For example the celebration to thank Princess Beatrix for her 33 years of kingship or Rotterdam celebrates the city. Secundair

Social-oriented companies

These companies are concerning the welfare of people, they do something for the society. One of them is Super-Actief, who influences the actual welfare wishes within the society by supporting citizens’ initiatives

in Rotterdam. One of these initiatives is the childrens’ camp, held every summer for children who do not have the opportunity to go on vacation. Due to the big success Super-Actief wanted to expend and VKOZ helped by writing a policy plan, raising funds and design a marketing-communication plan.

Small businesses

Small businesses are businesses with less than 50 employees and therefore most of them do not have a

specific marketing communication or event department. Nevertheless, this is not one of the primary targets at the moment. One example of an event designed for a small business, Music theatre Hollands Diep, who

creates performances with new opera repertoires combined with well-known classical aspects for unique locations (Over ons, sd).

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ROTTERDAM “Make it happen” is the statement of the city of Rotterdam and also the name of the new collaboration of the municipality of the Rotterdam, Harbor company Rotterdam, Erasmus University and Rotterdam Partners

to create an even stronger image national and international. (Rotterdam m. i., 2017) Rotterdam has a population of 638.179 inhabitants, which is expected to grow till almost 700.00 in 2035 (Bus, Jongh, & Kreuger, 2017), and the second largest city in the Netherlands (CBS, 2017).

The importance of the harbor, and the good accessibility of Rotterdam resulted into a good business vigor. The city attracts entrepreneurs, young professionals, expats and (inter)national students. The popularity of

Rotterdam attributed to the city’s more positive image as it was named European City of the Year 2015 by the International Academy of Urbanism, Europe’s capital of Cool by CNN, and ranked at position five in Lonely

Planet’s Best ‘top cities in the world 2016’. (Bas, 2015`) As concluded out of many stories and research within the initiative of the city council ‘A treasure of stories’, Rotterdam is a creative city with lots of energy, new

and innovative ideas for the future. (Het verhaal van de stad, 2017) The city has an innovative cultural climate and is known for its events, what is not only strengthen the image of the city but is also seen as important

for further development of Rotterdam as a leisure city (Rotterdam C. c., 2007). Therefore Rotterdam is seen as an eventful city, as events are included in the city council’s strategies (Richards & Palmer, 2010). This supports the decision for focusing on small and medium enterprises located in Rotterdam, as besides it is the location of the company and its network, events are very much going on in the city and included in lots of company their strategies.

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REASON FOR RESEARCH The reason for this research is that after seven years of operating, Marjolein van Rosmalen came to the point where she needed to decide whether to continue as a freelancer or continue growing with VKOZ by means

of personnel. The owner beliefs that is important to keep developing and is aiming for a better continuity, due to highs and lows in workforce and income. With the change from freelance to entrepreneur, the company will grow from a single-person to a company with personnel, and could accept more requests as

well as there is more time and space to focus on attracting new clients. As opportunities are seen within the corporate industry and more clients within those sectors are aimed for, the communication needed to change from inbound to outbound and based on a strong brand rather than a person. Therefore, a new marketing communication plan is wanted, which will create a stronger position for VKOZ in the market of corporate enterprises as soon as possible.

MANAGEMENT PROBLEM Due to highs and lows in workforce and income more dissemination is aimed for by the owner of VKOZ. Nevertheless, the understanding of how to create a stronger position for VKOZ is not sufficient enough to create a new strategy focusing on growth.

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CREATING A JOB FOR YOURSELF OR

BUILDING A BUSSINES? Further

investigation

on

the

research

problem will increase the understanding of

VKOZ’s situation. This chapter will identify

the problem and ascertain the effects and causes related to the growth VKOZ is aiming

for. What goes along with the transition from

freelancer to entrepreneur? What can influence that growth? This analysis will form the actual problem VKOZ is facing supported by the objective and research questions.

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How develops a business? Which phases do they know? Most of today’s start-ups start as a single-person organization. Nevertheless during the process of growth the owner(s) come to a point where they evaluate the continuity of growing and hire personnel or to decide to stay a single-person organization. This process is also known as from freelancer to entrepreneur; creating jobs for yourself or creating a business. When the decision is made to change into an entrepreneur, the company’s strategies change, as in todays crowded and evolving marketplace, it became important to stand out from competitors. A way to stand out is differentiate in terms of branding and focusing on the company’s core competencies and thus create brand equity and value. Changing from personal- to company-focus has an influence on how the brand is positioned in the market and therefore its strategies and way of communicating to its clients. But who are these clients? What is going on the field of business events and marketing? What are important trends which could have an influence? In order to have a better understanding of the problem and the possibilities to answer these questions an internal and external analysis is of high importance. In 1973 Lievegoed introduced the three development phases of organizations: pioneers phase, organization phase, and the integration phase. Lievegoed assumes that it is important for an organization or company to

have a suitable structure according to the phase they are in. Every phase starts with an evolution and growth, what goes along with structural changes for the organization, and ends with the decision to continue

growing or not (Lievegoed, 1973). At the moment this process of development and growth is starting to occur at VKOZ. After the pioneer phase and starting-up business with VKOZ, more continuity and growth is aimed for wherefore VKOZ is moving to the second and organizational phase.

THE FIRST AND PIONEERS PHASE, STARTING UP VKOZ AND CREATING A JOB

Opportunities are seen for a new product and the owner features the right competencies. In general, most of the companies start as a single-person or micro-business. The most common reason to begin a start-up, is the want for more flexibility or the autonomy to choose their own assignments (White & White, Are you

building a business or creating a job for yourself?, 2018). Marjolein van Rosmalen started VKOZ seven years ago and mainly operated as a freelancer. Over the years she executed a diverse range of events, mostly big

events in the sport, cultural and governmental sector. In general, within a single-person business there is not structure designed for handling requests and for the communication to its (possible) clients.

Nevertheless, VKOZ has a clear structure by means of an annual plan and strategy. Operating as a singleperson business contributes to a more personal contact, more flexibility and transparency to its clients. Competencies and core qualities For starting-up an event agency it is important to have the belonging competencies, qualities and know where you are good at. Important personal qualities for an event manager are: creative, social, good

organisational skills, team spirit, flexible and stress resistant (Paskaleva, 2015). But also experience and knowledge in the field of marketing, finance, operational and project management are required in order to be able to organise an event from beginning till the end. According to Gary Hamel and C.K. Prahalad core

competencies are also important for differentiating from competitors, as they can be used as a strength.

Focussing on the core competencies and qualities will strengthen the image and provide easier access to growth opportunities, because of specialized and already existing knowledge which is difficult to imitate (Hamel & Prahalad, 1993).

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As already stated before during the 20 years of work experience of Marjolein van Rosmalen gained a lot of knowledge and experience in the field of leisure and management and developed skills such as sociability, organizational, flexible, stress resistant and marketer. Period of growth: from freelancer to entrepreneur?

During the growth of a start-up a point rise where boundaries for a single-person are reached, quantitative as well as qualitative. Even though Marjolein van Rosmalen as VKOZ is operating well and there are enough

requests from big organizations, mostly in the sport, cultural and governmental sector, the focus was not on corporate events where her ambition lies as well as she had the aim for reducing risks. For example, a singleperson company is risky in the sense of the continuity of business during illness. But also the amount of

request got too big and a ‘no’ was sometimes needed to be sold, as well as that there was no time to change the strategies for future development. Marjolein believes that it is important for a company to keep

developing and updating strategies according to latest trends, in order to do accomplish that VKOZ is aiming to change from personal-focused to building a business around VKOZ. For example with employees, the work can always continue even though the owner does not have the ability himself. With transiting to an

entrepreneur and building a business with employees this risk can be reduced and a stable environment can be created (Beyeler, 2016; White & White, Are you building a business or creating a job for yourself?, 2018;

Godin, 2008). The main differences between creating a job for yourself (freelance) and building a business (entrepreneur) are:

FREELANCE

ENTREPRENEUR

Money in exchange for time

Use money to build a business

Goal to provide the best service in order to

Goal to make their business achieve growth by

increase the professional value

utilizing all resources and opportunities available

Development of skills and promote professional

Build and promote their business brand

brands Networking actively

Big network and base portfolio

Sometimes not able to accept all requests and

Ability to take on more work and not selling a ‘no’,

need to pass it on to someone else

which will help building relationships

Since 1994 Marjolein van Rosmalen developed a professional resume, a strong portfolio and a big network, which resulted in organising big events for her company VKOZ. As there is the aim for development, more business events, own events and a new strategy for a better continuity, the focus is on corporate enterprises.

Corporate enterprises organize lots of events, from small to big, what will lead to a faster and fluent cash flow. Even though, Marjolein van Rosmalen has enough experience and knowledge to organize smaller

events her portfolio contains mostly very big events and congresses, which could be a reason for the smaller enterprises to hold back. Therefore, it is important to execute the core competencies of VKOZ in the market of corporate enterprises in such way all enterprises no matter the size will get attracted. So, branding your

company is very important while undergoing the transition as clients need to feel connected to the company rather than the manager (White & White, Are you building a business or creating a job for yourself?, 2018). What means for VKOZ there is a switch from personal to business branding, what contains another approach and strategy.

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Competitor analysis In order to strength VKOZ in the business market of Rotterdam it is important to know what competitors are doing. To maximize the awareness of competitive opportunities and threats it is of importance to delineate

the competitive landscape. Which companies are operating there? Are they event production agencies or event organisation bureaus? What is their speciality? VKOZ is an event organisation bureau, what means

that they organise every type of event from the beginning till the end, from the communication till the execution. Therefore, VKOZ has the strength over cross-over as they are familiar with different kinds of events in different sectors, have a broad network and the ability to jump in every step of the process. An

event production agency only organises a specific event with its own products, the communication around it is done by a communication bureau or the client itself.

Also the main focus of VKOZ is business to business events, and is at the moment the only company with

this approach. The other event agencies located in Rotterdam have a different focus, namely on teambuilding and company’s parties. Also in the database of IDEA, a branch society and knowledge organisation, no

organisation like VKOZ can be found in Rotterdam. Nevertheless, a small and clear overview of the competitors is created by using the matrix of Bergen and Peteraf (Bergen & Peteraf, 2002). Since there are no real competitors in Rotterdam at the moment but could rise in the future, the focus is on the potential competitors. They score high on the similarity of recourses, but low on resemblance of the market. They are

important to keep an eye on since the have the recourses to enter the market easily. The competition will be analysed on their technological resources and their approach to the target needs. The targeted needs refer to

“The degree to which a given competitor overlaps with the focal firm in terms of customer needs served”

(Bergen & Peteraf, 2002) The definition is formulated in such way that the supply bias in identifying competitors is eliminated by

means of acknowledging that (uncommon) technologies may also satisfy the customers’ needs. Specifically, the similarity in technological recourses are stated as

“The extent to which a given competitor possesses strategic endowment comparable, in terms of type, to those of the focal competitor” (Bergen & Peteraf, 2002).

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Confronting these two variables a framework for competitor identification will be identified. The competitors will be categorized within the matrix within three categories: substitute competitors, direct competitors, and potential competitors. Substitute competitors serve the same market needs, but with different technologies. On the other hand, the direct competitors are whom that serve the same needs with identical recourses.

TARGETED NEEDS

SUBSTITUE

DIRECT

POTENTIAL

TECHNOLOGICAL RESOURCES

The outcomes and explanation of the competitor’s position can be found in appendix 1. Per category an amount of plusses are given, concluding the result of the overall findings. The maximum of six plusses

represent that the competitor scores very high, on the other hand zero plusses means that is scored very low. Out of the matrix can be concluded that Advance Events and Rotterdam Business Events are the most

important ones for VKOZ to take into consideration, as they have lots of resources as well as score high on the target needs of the clients.

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urrent marketing mix and strategy Besides knowing the competition it is important to know what has been done already in order to be able to have a better understanding of the current strategy of VKOZ and conduct a new suitable marketing approach

related to the development phase it is going through. The current strategy is based on all sectors, which are organising events and created based on experiences and thoughts without the support of research. Product The goals of the client are central and used as the guiding principles for that specific product. The product could be a complete organized event from the beginning till the end or specific stage within the process. VKOZ categorized the process in four categories: concept, management, communication, and production. Concept:

Based on the goal and strategy the story and style of the event will be selected, a program will be designed and a plan of action will be created. In order to create a

concept some elements can be expected: brainstorm sessions, a varied program, Management:

detailed project plan including time schedules and estimated budget.

Get the most out of the budget by creating a support base. VKOZ takes care of the budget and the script in order to check if the goals are reached in the end. Including

in this phase is the coordination of internal and operational processes, overview and Communication:

control of the budget, updates, and a chronological and detailed script.

An experience can be improved by means of good and effective communication.

When do you communicate about the event? How? Where? What is good for as well the customer experience as the brand awareness of the company? VKOZ creates a communication plan and execute this when wanted. This all contains branding of

the event, a communication plan using online and offline channels, photo-and life video report. Production:

The event will be planned as detailed as possible, taking all the possible risks into account so the event will be executed as planned. VKOZ will coordinate the event from the beginning till the end. The production includes a script, coordination of locations suppliers, and logistics, the control of employees and volunteers.

Interim eventmanager: When a project- or event manager is no longer available at a crucial moment within the event, an interim event manager can replace him or her to continue the event .

successfully.

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Price The price differs per client, per request. Every product is based on the needs and wants of the client and is

therefore never the same. Since VKOZ works with a team of freelancers no overhead costs are needed to be paid, and the costs for the client are lower. Place Even though the focus is mostly on clients located within the Rotterdam region, also national and international clients can be found within the network of VKOZ. Promotion

At the moment several channels are used for the promotion of VKOZ online. The most used and important channel at the moment is the renewed website. The website is created in such way that it a platform for all

(event) managers and interested. The website consist of blogs about events, communication, and Rotterdam. Besides the website other online channels are LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. On LinkedIn and

Twitter the articles of the blog are shared and an increase of the network as well as the amount of people redirected to the website are seen. Also a newsletter is send four times a year concerning updates about the leisure industry, Rotterdam, and the company to all the contacts on LinkedIn and email and there is the possibility to write an article for publication on eventbranche.nl two times a year.

8 Years ago established

43 Projects guided

5919800 Visitors made happy 21


THE SECOND & ORGANISATIONAL PHASE: BUILDING BUSINESS WITH VKOZ After Marjolein van Rosmalen decided to transform into an entrepreneur and continue growing, VKOZ will move to the organizational phase. The big change between the pioneer and the organizational phase is that the organization is no longer formed by the owner, but by means of a system with the owner as the manager. This leads to the importance of the management principles Henri Fayol introduced in 1949, such as task

division, responsibility, discipline, unity of direction and orders, etc. (Fayol, 1949). Most entrepreneurs underestimate leading and selecting a team of employees (White & White, Are you building a business or

creating a job for yourself?, 2018). Firstly, the success of the company is in your hands and after the transition it depends on how well you hire and manage workers. Secondly, the network is used to work with the owner and not with an associate. Nevertheless this will not occur at VKOZ as they already have a structured work approach, which can be executed with or without personnel. Furthermore, the previous

work experience of Marjolein van Rosmalen as a manager of a large team support preventing her from unexpected surprises and taking the lead as she knows what to expect.

“Most entrepreneurs underestimate the management of a team of employees� The growth also influences the relationships to the market, as with a single-person business the contact is very personal and with more employees that is getting less and the market can be expended (Lievegoed, 1973). Therefore, systems and strategies will be developed to segment and approach clients. Since there is

the aim for development, more business events, own events and a new strategy for a better continuity, the focus is on corporate enterprises. The reason for that is because they organize lots of events small as well

as big, which will lead to a faster and fluent cash flow. But also there was no communication strategy yet, wherefore most communication was inbound. Therefore, most of the current clients are big companies or

organizations, which reach out to VKOZ by themselves via her network, as they need some help and their own event departments have the knowledge were to look for. As corporate enterprises, especially the small and medium sized, do not reach out to VKOZ themselves, it is decided to focus on them first.

Even though, Marjolein van Rosmalen has enough experience and knowledge to organize smaller events her portfolio contains mostly very big events and congresses, which could be a reason for the smaller

enterprises, with less than 250 employees, to hold back. Therefore, it is important to execute the core

competencies of VKOZ in the market of corporate enterprises in such way they all get attracted. So, branding your company is very important while undergoing the transition as clients need to feel connected to the

company rather than the manager (White & White, Are you building a business or creating a job for yourself?, 2018). Which means for VKOZ there is a switch from personal to business branding, which contains another approach and strategy. .

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Target group

But how does the target group of corporate enterprises, and especially in the Rotterdam region look-like? What is the age range? How and where do they operate? These days people are getting older, people are longer active, and the retirement age increased what reflected the average age of an employee going up to the age of 48. Nevertheless the growth of the smallest and youngest group is increasing quite much, with 14 percent (Koophandel, 2017).

Age of starters 30000 20000 10000 0 0 - 19 years

20 - 24 years

25 - 29 years

30 - 34 years

35 - 39 years

40 - 44 years

2015

45 - 49 years

50 - 54 years

55 - 59 years

60 - 64 years

65+ years

2016

Source: Age of starters (Koophandel, 2017)

This growth of young professionals has an influence on the current marketing approach, which is linked to

traditional marketing. With traditional marketing the marketer has the power and uses company-created content, it is one-size fits all. Considering the upcoming group of young professionals, also known as

generation Y and Z, the structure and strategies needed to change into more modern marketing since they

value personalization, they want to be in control and grew up with the modern technology. They have the newest gadgets and learn about the new channels fast, therefore they are also called the digital natives.

Therefore, the guiding principles for those new structures are sustainability, authenticity and online platforms. Switching from traditional marketing to modern marketing will therefore provide new opportunities for VKOZ to broaden and strengthen the client base

Use of internet on devices

32%

64%

GENERATION X

GENERATION Y

.

81%

46% 48%

0%

10%

20%

30% televisie

40% tablet

50% smartphone

94% 90% 92%

60% laptop

70%

80%

90%

100%

Source: marketing facts, 2017 (Manen, 2017)

But companies are turning into platforms themselves as well, as social responsibility became a set principle of every organization. (Overbosch, 2016) That new set standard goes along with super specialisation while next to that there is the trend of blurring business. As people are very busy these days they want to spend

their time as efficient as possible, which resulted in companies offering services in different fields and the use of cross-channel marketing and co-creation. The businesses respond to this by opening up their workspace for others in order to get in contact with each other and share knowledge, experiences and business. (Specialization VS Super Specialization, 2017)

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rends Trends on international as well as national level can have an influence on the industry VKOZ wants to operate in. Therefore, is started with analysing the trends related to business events. Nevertheless, it is important

to look at the industry of corporate enterprises as the new strategy will be focused on them. A selection is made of the most important trends which could have an impact on the target group and product. The field of business events

Social media

These days we want to be online and in contact with everyone, everywhere and anytime. Because of that,

social media is integrating in our lives more and more. There is a broad range of social media channels; from Snapchat to Facebook and from LinkedIn to Pinterest. The developments within social media go very fast, as they have a broad range of influential factors on its usage or image.

Snapchat Pinterest Google+ Instagram

21% 35% 37% 56%

Twitter YouTube LinkedIn Facebook

80% 81% 83% 89%

Source: The social media platforms businesses value (Mangles, 2017) As can be seen in the graphic Facebook is currently the most used channel by businesses. Even though Facebook has the algorithm to select to most relevant content per user, the range is decreasing. Therefore

a switch arise to companies started advertising on Facebook instead of only posting. Facebook provides lots of opportunities for entrepreneurs for example the function of Facebook-live and 360 degrees photography. This function provides the opportunity for crowd streaming, so when people are not physically available they can still join the meeting or watch it online. (Goossens, 2018) The video is not only a tool to capture the event but also useful for the promotion of the upcoming events. Expected is that videos are important in the pre-, direct-, and post-exposure phase and a basic component of the content strategy as 80 percent rather watch

a movie than reading a blog. (De 5 belangrijkste congres- en event trends voor 2017, 2016) Social media

integrates further within events and congresses, combinations are designed between online and physical elements. (RAI, 2013) .

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Expected is that the use of LinkedIn will increase in 2018. The new features make it a big platform for B2B

community. A section will be launched on its network on business news for example. Within this section a

stream of outside news sources will be mixed with posts written by LinkedIn users. Along with the updated search tool, which makes it easy to both communicate with targeted accounts and find key individuals. (Hilla, 2017) According to a study of marketer the younger people will switch more often from Facebook till new visual social media channels like Instagram and Snapchat (eMarketer, 2017).

Privacy law

The European GDRP and the Dutch AGV are getting implemented from May 2018 onwards. By means of stricter requirements on data processing, the process of retargeting on Facebook for example, is getting

more difficult. Also the use of an email-address within a database or mailing list of the followers on social media is getting more difficult. (Kager, 2017)

Personalization

Seen as the overall umbrella of marketing for 2018 is personalization. Social media contributed to an

overload of content presented to its users, wherefore custom-made marketing is getting more important in order to distinguish from other companies. Millennials for example are known for the interest in relevant

campaigns: personalized and segmented content with a meaning, instead of the traditional forms of

advertising. A good marketing approach could be account based marketing as not only the home page of the website is implemented but also customer-fits campaigns through all channels by means of for example a

personalized landing page and programming. (Labots, Geus, & Griffioen, 2017) (Alibhai, 2017) (Berg, 2017) This also influences the boundaries between the speaker(s) and the guests. According to Vivi de Regt and

Will Curran there is a change in the set-up of a congress. There is the preference for smaller workshops and

sessions during a program, which is based on the needs and wants of the participants. (De 5 belangrijkste congres- en event trends voor 2017, 2016) (Curran, 2017)

Fiscal labour costs

Since the first of January 2015 in the Netherlands the free reimbursement was replaced for the fiscal labour costs regulation. This regulation states that a maximum of 1,2 percent of the gross salary of employees can be spend without taxes on extra reimbursements like a company outing, a Christmas gift, business diners,

etc. When spend more the company needs to pay a tax of 80 of the extra spend money. (Belastingdienst, 2017) Therefore business events are used for presentations, teambuilding, meetings and trainings, etc. (De invloed van de WKR op zakelijke evenementen, 2015)

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The field of corporate enterprises

Share expertise The new privacy law within Europe will result in more inbound marketing, attracting the market by sharing knowledge. The easiest way of inbound marketing is sharing articles of others on LinkedIn, but the most

ultimate and efficient form is to write new articles yourself. Answering the questions and problems by means of a blog, the market will be attracted to the company via Google. (Hall, 2017)

Unique stories, storytelling These days ‘real’ products are highly valued. People want to buy products of companies where they feel

connected with. They want to understand where the company stands for, why and by who the company was founded. They want to hear the real and honest stories. But also media is looking for companies with stories. They are seeking for experts with stories and experiences. Storytelling is therefore a good way for an

organization to share the ideas, opinions, goals, knowledge and experiences. (10 marketing strategieën voor kleine of startende bedrijven, 2017) (Chylinski, 2012)

.

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randing Within the organisational phase a switch will be made from personal- to business branding, since the focus is no longer on the qualities and competencies of Marjolein van Rosmalen but on VKOZ. As Jesse Gosse stated a brand is the way the customer perceived you and involves every aspect of a client’s experience,

from the website to your logo, advertising, social media posts, etc. (Gosse, 2016). Branding can help setting the business DNA, setting expectations, generating referrals, adding value, and creating emotional

connection among possible clients and is supported by marketing as a communication tool (Strategy, 2017). Since VKOZ is transitioning to a brand-focus it is important to increase the strength of VKOZ as a brand,

which can be done by increasing the brand value and equity among the corporate enterprises in Rotterdam. What is brand value and brand equity exactly? What does it contain? Brand value According to Kevin Lane Keller brand value is financially based and represents the net present value of a

company, so what the brand is worth to management and shareholders. Brand value can be used as a motivation for estimating the value of a brand more precisely and for accounting purposes (Keller K. L., 1993).

However, for this research the financial value of VKOZ is not important as the focus is on attracting more clients for business events. Thus, the focus is on the client and their needs and wants in combination with the core competencies and qualities of VKOZ. A method helpful for explaining clients’ needs is Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, which describes the motivations of people for doing things (Maslow, 1943). (Customer based) Brand equity In 1991 David Aaker introduced a range of set assets namely, brand visibility, brand associations, and customer’s loyalty in 1991 (Aaker D. A., 1991). These are seen as the main components for building brand equity. Brand equity is about the value of the brand on a client and demonstrates that a brand is not just an aid to generate short-term sales. It is also a strategic support to a business strategy, which will add longterm value to an organization. As stated previously, the focus of VKOZ is on creating a valuable brand, which will attract new and potential clients. Therefore, these assets could be interesting for increasing the overall value of VKOZ.

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Brand visibility Brand visibility is about the credibility and awareness a company has according to a particular

customer need (Aaker D. A., 1991). When a customer, a possible client of VKOZ, starts with his research for a product or service, it is wanted that your brand comes to mind or can be found easily.

A brand can be visible online as offline, but where is target group? These days using online recourses is getting much more important than offline, as a big group within the small and medium enterprises is part of the millennial generation. Therefore, it is important for VKOZ to make sure they are present at the right channels and in the right way. 

Brand associations Brand associations involve every positive or negative feeling towards the brand (Aaker D. , 2016). According to Keller by identifying with a brand, a feeling of affiliation can improve the relationship

between a client and a brand. This is part of the goal of VKOZ: creating new relationships between VKOZ and corporate enterprises. A way to create this could be via marketing programs, which transfer information about the brand to the clients, what can done online as well as offline (Keller K. L., 2001). 

Customer’s loyalty According to Ranade loyalty can be defined as “A customer continuing to believe that your organization’s product/service offer is their best option. It best fulfils their value proposition whatever that may be. They take that offer whenever faced with that purchasing decision. A

customer wants to do business with you and does (Ranade, 2012)”. In order to build a strong network

it is important for VKOZ that clients become loyal and share their experience with others, word-ofmouth advertisement is still the most common offline advertisement tool (Generation Y, 2018).

Even though David Aaker stated that brand equity is of high importance, it should be taken into consideration that it is hard to measure as it is based on values, ideas, and opinions of the clients. However, the customer based brand equity model by Keller can be interesting as it provides a theoretical framework for

understanding the building of brand equity (Keller K. L., 2001). The pyramid consists of four layers: brand

identity and core competencies, brand meaning, consumer response, and brand resonance. Even though the

model is mainly focused on consumer to business, it is also applicable for business-to-business. Even though the model provides a clear structure and understanding of brand equity it does not completely build it. A

major supporting tool for that is through marketing activities. A product may give intangible and tangible benefits, which can be manipulated by marketing programs. Additionally, using different distribution channels in a marketing program can also maximize the brand awareness. Conclusion The growth of VKOZ to the organisational phase and becoming an entrepreneur goes along with the aim for more requests for corporate events, a spread workforce and income, a better continuity and reducing the

risks of being a single-person company. Overall the basic requirements for the transition from freelancer to entrepreneur can be ticked off, such as a broad network, experience in management and a strong motivation for future developments. However, for the next step it is important to look what exactly the core

competencies and qualities of VKOZ as a company are? What are the unique selling-points according to corporate enterprises? What need to be changed in strategy and communication to attract those enterprises

for business events? When the core qualities of VKOZ and corporate enterprises are identified based on their

needs and wants, the right market movement by means of a marketing communication plan can be created. The SDP model can help providing a systematic overview for the process of market movement according to Knoot (Knoot, 2018).

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Problem definition The main question based on the analysis of the management problem is:

How can the brand of VKOZ be strengthened and a customer-fit created within the market of corporate enterprises? Research objective This research aims to gain insight into the needs and wants of corporate enterprises regarding business

events in order to create a suitable strategy and communication plan for the transition from freelancer to entrepreneur, so from Marjolein van Rosmalen to a strong represented VKOZ. Research questions 

What does the brand equity of VKOZ look-like?



What are the needs and wants of businesses regarding corporate events?



What are the highly valued distribution channels according to corporate enterprises?

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THEORETI

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CAL FRAMEWORK The theoretical will provide an overview of all theories and models which support the study on how a stronger brand around VKOZ can

be created. Finally out of all theories a conceptual model is created to structure further research.

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The theoretical framework will provide input for the research questions as the theories concern aspects

related to branding and positioning of VKOZ and the needs and wants of corporate enterprises. The theories and models will be explained in such way it becomes clear why they will support finding the answers the two

research questions. The last research questions about the most valuable channel for distributing information according to the target will not be supported by means of a specific model or theory but tested during interviews with companies in the Rotterdam region, as it is an individual opinion for everyone. All theories will be combined in a conceptual model, which provides an overall guideline for the research.

For this thesis the “Rotterdam region� will be defined as: The Rotterdam city region before it merged the

first of January 2015 within the Rotterdam-The Hague metropolitan area. This area includes the area around Rotterdam, with 15 municipalities and 1.2 million inhabitants. The covered municipalities are Barendrecht, Capelle aan de Ijssel, Albrandswaard, Brielle, Krimpen aan den Ijssel, Hellevoetsluis, Maassluis, Lansingerland, Ridderkerk, Nissewaar, Schiedam, Rotterdam, Westvoorne, and Vlaardingen.

Overall process and guidance, the SDP model The SDP model is an instrument and modern marketing tool which helps identify target groups and

formulate the correct market strategy. The model is developed in practice and therefore no exact author can be pointed out. The structural way of thinking from segmentation, to finally a position strategy will result in

a client based approach which will help prioritise propositions whereby value can be added to (personalised) communication.

In order to create a valuable position for VKOZ with a client-fit, it is important to know the target group and its needs and wants. Therefore, there is a strong connection between segmentation, the target market and

positioning. During the orientation the general demographics and trends in relation to the target group, which are companies located in the Rotterdam region, where defined. In order to gain better insights more specific research will be done on the needs and wants and the top 5 companies who organise events in

Rotterdam, which will answer the second research question on needs and wants. This information and the outcomes of the first research question on the brand equity of VKOZ, will be evaluated, compared in order to create a new positioning strategy which will be the basis for the marketing communication plan.

Source the SDP model (Muilwijk, 2009).

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Segmentation and determing the target market.

Since there is the aim of VKOZ to focus on corporate enterprises the selection has been made on forehand. Nevertheless, it is still important to look at the criteria and select the most interesting and useful ones. Therefore, out of the top ten branches which organise events a top five of Rotterdam will be created in

order to focus on the most important ones. Possible segmenation criteria for business- to business could be: 

Demographics; position, operating-sector, etc.



Usage variables: product types, etc.



Behavioural: loyalty, searching, etc.

Positioning

When the segments and target group are defined a suitable positioning is needed to be applied. The positioning should respond to the segmentation in order to create a positive identity (Muilwijk, 2009). The positioning strategy will guide as a basis for the plans followed and actions taken, in this case creating a marketing communication plan for researching corporate enterprises.

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The brand equity of VKOZ In order to answer the main question: “How can the brand of VKOZ be strengthened and customer-fit with the market of corporate enterprises created?” it is important to have an idea of how the brand equity of

VKOZ looks-like at the moment. Since the focus was on Majolein van Rosmalen rather than on VKOZ research is needed to be done on the current image and performance of VKOZ. These outcomes will be comparted with the needs and wants, to see how VKOZ should be positioned and which competencies

should be focused on. The theory and model created by Keller provides a clear and complete overview of the different elements of brand equity. By guidance of this model VKOZ can evaluate the current brand value

and use this as a tool for the process in the future. The core competencies will support analysing and creating a client-fit image for VKOZ, as they provide a better understanding of VKOZ’s strengths and weaknesses.

When there is a solid understanding of the strong characteristics of VKOZ a stronger differentiation from competitors can be created. Brand equity model by Keller

The brand equity model maps the process of building a (strong) network and could be used as a guiding tool for creating a strong brand around VKOZ. The model differentiate brand value in six different dimensions: brand salience, brand imagery, brand performance, consumer feelings, consumer judgements, and brand resonance.

Source: Building customer-based brand equity (Keller K. L., 2001)

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Brand salience

The first phase while building a brand is the identity: who am I? Where do I stand for? What do I want to bring across? With a good identity the client knows where to place the brand and company by means of communication and product. The stronger and more clear the identity, the easier for clients to connect and

recognize. It is important to first research who is VKOZ and what it want to bring across. The identity will be based on the norms, values and beliefs and reflects how VKOZ wants to been seen by others. A strong identity is the basis for building a brand.

Brand imagery and brand performance

The image of brand represents the opinions and ideas people have about your brand. To refer to the

psychosocial needs of the client. This can be influence directly, experience with the product or service, or indirectly, advertising. When the brand image and its strengths of VKOZ are mapped and the target group

are precisely defined a new strategy for positioning VKOZ will be created which will be supported by a marketing communication plan in order to have a positive influence on (possible) clients. Next to that, the

brand performance is of high importance. A strong brand performance starts with a product or service which fits the needs and wants of the target group. The identity and communication of the company and its products set a certain expectation. With brand performance it is the challenge to go beyond those

expectations. In order to increase the overall value of the brand both aspects needed to be actively managed, as finally all associations come together.

Consumer feelings and Consumer judgements

When there is a strong image and performance the way people feel and think of a brand can be further

responded to. As a result of the previous phase judgement, evaluation, and forming an attitude regarding the brand will be formed. Since the previous phases has a focus on VKOZ and what it contains and is wanted

to been seen it is for further development important to look more in-depth into the target group. Here fore, two dimensions are important: feelings (emotions) and judgements (rational). Judgement refers to the

opinions people have about the brand based on three criteria: trustworthy, superiority, and quality. However,

feelings contain an emotional reaction of the client. The feelings arise with a brand are based on the factors: fun, safety, warmth, excitement, self-respect and, social acceptation. Those two elements together will

provide a deeper insight into the behavior of the corporate enterprises and their needs and wants regarding business events and event agencies, which will contribute to creating a client-fit with the marketing communication plan.

Brand resonance

Finally, when the brand is positively judged, emotional as well as rational, a solid base is created for customer loyalty. When a relationship between two parties is agreed upon, there can be spoken of loyalty. Loyalty can be measured based on four components: behavioral loyalty (re-purchasements), emotional commitment, active brand involvement, and brand community. Brand resonance represents the ultimate relationship

between a company and a client and important to maintain, which is the ultimate and final goal of VKOZ for the future (Keller K. L., 2001).

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Brand identity prism by Kapferer The model helps building enduring and strong identities which reflect their core values. It divides six facets

of a brand identity: personality, physics, culture, relation, self-image, and reflection. Those six facets are split-up in two dimensions: the image of the sender versus the image of the receiver and externalization versus internalization (Verhage, 2013). A recognizable identity is important for differentiate from competitor, and reaching the target group on a subconscious and subtle level. According to Kapferer these facets will come into effect when a brand, as VKOZ, communicates with the audience.

Physique

Source: The brand identity prism (Verhage, 2013)

A set of the physical features, which conjured in a person’s mind when thinking off the brand. Think of the color red which is often associated with Coca-Cola. For VKOZ the logo with an eye could be easy recognizable for people.

Culture

The origin, the culture of a company is the basis for everything conducted: communication, products,

services, behavior, etc. It forms the direct link between the brand and the organization. The culture includes a variety of elements: norms and values, expectations, goals, mission, vision and work environment. Defining the exact culture of VKOZ will help understanding the basis of VKOZ, the guiding principles.

Personality

The character of VKOZ, the way of communication and behavior is a big aspect of forming the identity.

Personality is important to achieve differentiation and is based on culture: the norms and values. In order to express VKOZ’s personality a specific attitude, tone, colors or writing style will be used for all communication touchpoints: mails, website, blogs, social platforms and so -+on (Verhage, 2013).

Relationship

Important for a brand is to build a relationship with clients, since that will results in loyalty. For VKOZ it is important to create a network around VKOZ and build relations based on the values of VKOZ rather than Marjolein herself.

Reflection

A brand should reflect the identity of the target market in order to create a connection between the buyer

and the brand. In order to prevent a disconnection the needs and wants of corporate enterprises will be researched to create a good reflection in the end.

Self - image

The feeling a person has after he or she bought the product. For example buying a particular brand will make you feel special. This occurs especially in luxury products such as cars, watches which rare.

Since a new marketing communication plan will be written, the facets can be important to look at.

Nevertheless, since a new target group is wanted to be attracted the focus is on the internal dimension and the picture of the sender, as there is no reflection for example possible yet. Therefore, the two facets focused on are personality and culture.

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Core competency model by Hamel and Prahalad As already discussed earlier, for branding and differentiating from competitors it is important to focus on core competencies and qualities in order to take advantage of their uniqueness and power. As the company

features existing and specialized knowledge which is hard to replicate, the company gets easy access to new markets and (future) developments. As Marjolein van Rosmalen has lots of experience in the field of leisure

and management and beliefs that it is important for a company to keep developing, this method fits and will help creating a stronger brand around VKOZ. In order to make sure development can be maintained and core qualities can be owned, the core competence model can be used.

Source: The core competence model (Prahalad & Hamel, 1997).

In general the model comprises four different core competencies: resources, capabilities, competitive advantage and strategy. In order to acquire more core competencies for VKOZ, the matrix will be used in which the competences are combined with new or existing markets: 

Fill in the blanks

Which competences are useful in the existing markets to strengthen the position of the company? 

White spaces

For new markets it is important to stay close to the ‘core business and formulate clear goals. Based on that it will become clear which competencies are needed for the future and how they could be developed. 

Premier plus ten

A strategic point of view on placing a new and strong core quality within an existing market. 

Mega opportunities

A big opportunity, with high results but possible risks as the company operates within an unfamiliar market. Nevertheless, it could have a big benefit as competencies will be improved and the reaching markets expanded (Hamel & Prahalad, 1993).

Since VKOZ is familiar with the market of corporate events and wants to focus on a new competency, which completely fits the target group ‘premier plus ten’ fits the process the best. Research will reveal what the

target group is seeking for and values the most, which can be used as a guideline for finding the competency.

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The needs and wants of (potential) clients When it is clear how VKOZ looks-like at the moment and how they are currently operating in relation to

marketing and brand development, the needs and wants of (potential) clients can be researched. It is important to have an understanding of what they need, value and expect of an event agency in order to create suitable marketing strategy. Hierarchy of needs by Maslow Every individual is motivated by its needs to do something and therefore it is important for VKOZ to find out their needs and motivations in order to be able to respond to them. The Hierarchy of needs by Abraham

Maslow helps explaining how these needs motivate us. Someone’s needs are formed based on three factors:   

The people in our surrounding The individual himself

The society a person lives in

The humans’ needs are explained in more detail within the pyramid of Maslow. Maslow states that there is the motivation for achieving certain needs and some have priority over others. Everyone needs physical survival first and is therefore the bottom of the pyramid and set as a basic need. Someone will for look for

physical needs such as safe, shelter and food before seeking for social contact. When all these needs are

found, recognition and self-confidence are wanted to experience. Finally, a person will realize his own ideals and goals, also known as self-actualization (Maslow, 1943).

Source: Hierarchy of needs (Maslow, 1943).

For the branding of VKOZ a better picture of the target group is wanted, wherefore it is important to look at their needs. Due to the fact that an event is not a primary need, the physiological aspect is not of importance as well as love and belonging. Nevertheless, safety is important in several ways as the client want to be

certain that the event manager is capable of organising a successful event as well as they need to feel ‘safe’ in order to do business. That will be supported by esteem, where respect is an important issue, as well as self-actualization which could be ticked off when co-creation is aimed for, for example.

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The Value Proposition Canvas In 2012, Alexander Osterwalder and his team created a new version of the value proposition canvas based on the business model canvas, which is drawn on Peter Drucker’s theories of the firm and Michael Porter’s

value chain maps. In order to create a better customer-fit between a company and their products and the

needs and wants of the (potential) clients, which is the goal of VKOZ. The model starts with defining the

tasks of the client and the goals they want to reach. Next to that, you will select the so called ‘pains’ and ‘gains’, which can refer to the needs and wants of the target group. Finally, these results will be translated to the company’s own products and services. This model can be supported by the core competency model

of Prahalad and Hamal, as there is the focus on the company and its strengths and uniqueness’s. Whereas

the Value Proposition Canvas focusses on the client. Combining both theories will result in a strong brand of VKOZ as matches can be created between VKOZ its characterises and competencies and the corporate enterprises.

Source: The value proposition canvas (Osterwalder, Pigneur, Bernarda, & Smith, 2014)

The pains: The pains describe negative emotions, undesired situations, costs, and risks the customer has experienced. Possible questions could be: -

What’s keeping your customer awake? Concerns, worries, issues, etc.? What barriers are keeping your customer away?

The gains: -

What does your customer expect?

-

What would make your customers’ job easier?

(Osterwalder, 2012)

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The conceptual model

The conceptual model shows the different stages the branding of VKOZ in order to create an efficient

strategy and communication plan for reaching corporate enterprises for business events. The basis of the

model, the dark squares are about the branding of VKOZ and can be referred to while researching the first question; what is the current brand equity of VKOZ. In order to create a strong brand and know what to

improve, an impression of the current situation is wanted. Starting with the identification of VKOZ based on brand salience, where VKOZ will be identified based on the core competecies within ‘premier plus ten’

according to Hamel and Prahalad. Which means the focus on placing a new competency in an extisting market. Due to the corporate network and experience the market of corporate enterprises is not new for VKOZ, only it is important to find out where is exactly seeked for in order to choose a new and outstanding

competency VKOZ contains and which will differentiate VKOZ from competitors. Since brand salience is all about identity, the two facets culture and personality of Kapferer’s brand identity prism will support as a

guidline for defining the indentity of VKOZ. The culture, the origin of VKOZ is the basis for everything conducted as it reflects the norms and values as well as it has on influence on a character, the personality.

But also the brand performance and brand imaginary contribute to the complete overview of branding VKOZ as the look at the visibilty and products. Those two components can be influencend by means of advertising and the selection of products. These first three components of Keller’s brand equity model will create the

first and basic opinion people have with a brand. However, this can be strenghtened and improved by looking at the target market more detailed according to their needs, wants and values which will provide an answer

to the research question on the corporate enterprises and their needs ans wants. While the decision is made for corporate enterprises they will be further defined and segmented by means of creating a top 5 of branches which organise the most events. This can be done by looking at consumer judgement and feeling.

This is also where the motivation of clients based on Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, comes in as they have an

influence on the emotions and feelings of a person as well as the pains and gains of Osterwalder which focus

on their needs and wants where the final decions are based on. Finally, the right position in the market will be defined, and a communication plan will be designed based on all outcomes. This marketing

communication plan will focus on approaching the target group as efficient as possible in order to strenghten the brand VKOZ, the problem definition of this research and so called main question. In a later stage, when a

good connection between VKOZ and its clients is created, positive associations arise and clients will become loyal. This will support the goal to reduce the high and lows in workforce and income and create a good balance what can be done through organzing more business events, which will results in having a spread income and a fluent transition to a small company instead of a single-person.

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RESEARCH METHODS More insight into the target group, corporate enterprises and especially located

within the Rotterdam region, is needed. Per research questions will be clarified how the needed data will be collected by means of either desk research, field research or

a combination of both. This, in order to look from different perspectives, get to the

deeper and honest stories, and compare if the things they said they do are actually done.

Besides the research specific for answering the research questions more precise information is needed on the specific branches which organise events in order to provide an overall idea of how corporate enterprises are represented within the Rotterdam region.

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What does the brand equity of VKOZ look-like? To map how the brand equity of VKOZ looks-like at the moment, the first three elements of the Brand Equity model will be deployed as a guiding tool, since they focus on the brand identity. They will be supported by

‘premier plus ten’ of the Core Competency model and the culture and personality out of the brand identity prism. As explained within the theoretical framework on page 34, the brand equity model of Keller provides

an overview of the different elements brand equity supported by the core competencies of Prahalad and Hamel, which focus on the core qualities and competencies in order to differentiate from competitors. But also the components culture and personality of the brand identity prism of Kapferer can be used to analyse

the brand. In order to be able to answer this question desk research as well as interviews are used. Via desk research will be clear how VKOZ is currently visible. How does VKOZ communicate with its target group and

how and where is VKOZ represented online? Also studies on social media profiles will be researched in order to create the most effective profiles for VKOZ. These outcomes will be compared with the needs and wants of the interviewees, potential clients and branch experts, in order to create a strong brand around VKOZ. Research method Desk research will be used to gain an extensive insight into social media and how to create the best business accounts and finally supported by the evaluation of the current accounts of VKOZ. The outcomes will be

compared with the outcomes of the interviews. The interviews will be held with corporate enterprises who can be potential clients and with branch experts. The interviews with corporate enterprises will have the

focus on their needs and wants in relation to business events and event agencies while the focus with branch experts will be on their opinion and experiences.

What are the needs and wants regarding the organisation of business events of corporate enterprises? In order to find out the needs and wants of corporate businesses the Value Proposition Canvas and the hierarchy of needs will be used as guiding tools and filled in. As can be read within the theoretical framework on page 39, the Value Proposition Canvas will help structuring the pains and gains in order to fill in the

products and services and Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs will provide an insight in the motivations of clients. Since needs and wants are personal opinions and ideas and therefore subjective subjects, the information is not possible to gather via desk research. Therefore interviews are scheduled with several companies and branch experts. The target group At the moment most of VKOZ its clients are big companies and organisations, who reach out to VKOZ

themselves via her network. Since a growth is wanted VKOZ is aiming to attract more clients within the corporate industry, wherefore the communication needs to change from inbound to outbound. Since a

survey within 400 potential clients within Rotterdam is not realistic within the time-set and it is the first contact moment with new and potential clients, VKOZ values a personal approach. Therefore there is decided on semi-structured interviews. Research method The interviews will be held with seven corporate enterprises located in Rotterdam and divided amongst the top five branches which organise events and with a variety from small till big and already organising events or in the future. Next to that two branch experts will be interviewed: MKB Rotterdam and IDEA. This all, in order to research the topic from different perspectives.

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INTERVIEWED COMPANIES DE WONINGWACHTER – MARCEL DE KRUYFF

VARO ENERGY B.V. – MICHAEL BEKKERS

ROBECO – SENA & CONNY

BAM – MONIQUE DUBBELD

DATAMATCH – RICHARD DE JONG

TRANSPORT AND LOGISTICS *CONFIDENTIAL

DHL – PIET DE KRAMER

EXPERTS IDEA – MAARTEN SCHRAM MKB ROTTERDAM RIJNMOND – JACK KRIEK

For the interviews the order and way of asking questions is not important as well as the item list of semistructured interviews can be improved during the research when noticed something should be added or asked differently.

When after desk research it is clear who are VKOZ its potential clients exactly, a special campaign will be set up to call to companies in Rotterdam who organize events to participate in this research. The campaign will focus on the benefits for all parties involved, as entrepreneurs and companies are always busy with “what is in it for them?” Next to the increase of response the first and professional impression is also of high

importance as it could be the first contact with possible clients. The campaign consists of a small introductionary article on the website and social accounts of VKOZ. Next to that, flyers will be designed which will be provided to contacts during diverse network events. More about the campaign can be found in

appendix 1. In order to analyze the collected information, at least three of the interviews will be transcribed in details and of the other extensive summaries are made and coded afterwards by means of the folio method (Sciences, 2016; Markteffect, 2018). The summaries and transcripts can be found in appendix 2. The folio works with themes and its belonging quotes and sayings. These themes are related to the

theoretical framework and the conceptual model, as those provide the basis for the asked questions. The residuary interviews will be summarized based on the themes of the transcriptions.

What are the highly valued distribution channels according to corporate enterprises? No specific theory or model will be used to find out what are the most valued distribution channel. The

interviews will be used to gather an insight into the used and most valued distribution channels of the target group. This will be supported by desk research by means of studies on social media.

45


Operationalisation scheme The operationalisation scheme will help defining the measurements of the theories of the conceptual model. The theories

and outcomes are not directly measurable, though they can be indicated by several elements. The operationalisation scheme will therefore be a guideline for the interviews and meetings. Theory

Supporting theory

SDP

Attributes

Supporting attributes

Segmentation

model

and define target

Topic

Elements

Question

Background

Origin

Introduce yourself:

market

Background, function, etc. Introduce the

company/organization Age

How long operates they

Product

What are you selling? Are

company?

you satisfied?

Strong points of Events Keller’s

The value

equity

canvas

brand

proposition

Gains

Brand salience

Identity

organization?

Are you organizing events? Why?

What do you value? Co-creation?

model

Pains

Brand

performance

Expectations

What do you expect from an event agency?

Transparency, etc.? Wherefore do you hire an event agency? What is missing out of experience? Bottlenecks?

Maslow’s

hierarchy of needs

Brand imagery

Psychosocial needs Attention

Advertising

Where do you search?

Affection

What do you value on a

Acceptance

personal or formal

Appreciation

company’s account? A approach?

Where do you seek for? What kind of information do you want? Are the portfolio and

background important? Rotterdam?

46


Consumer

Safety

judgement

Superiority

(rational)

Consumer

Trustworthy quality

Esteem

Respect, warmth

Self –

Excitement, creativity,

actualisation

social acceptation, fun,

Loyalty,

Networking?

feeling (emotions)

Brand resonance

goals

commitment, involvement, brand

community

Ethics In order to avoid issues about the information out of the interviews, interviewees will be fully informed on the intention of

the research and content of the interview. Besides that, interviewees will be informed that they are allowed to skip questions if they feel uncomfortable or have specific confidentiality policies. In order to take care of those ethics and confidentiality a form will be composed, which every interviewee need to approve on tape. By this, the interviewee as well as the interviewer are aware of the set agreements.

47


“IT

TH

48


RESULTS

T IS ALL ABOUT

HE POWER OF REPETITION” MARCEL DE KRUYFF

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The world is getting more digitalized, everything and everyone is connected with each other through the internet. Since the digitalization a stronger aim for personal contact arose, online as well as offline.

Worldwide live communication is getting more and more important within the companies’ their marketing mix, especially within America. Nevertheless, according to the research of LiveCom Alliance a growth within Europe and especially in the Netherlands (42%) is expected as well (Alliance, 2017).

Live communication or events are seen as the key to creating more brand awareness, engagement, lead generation and brand preference. A strategic marketing tool where everything comes together: personality,

content, offline and online (Office, 2017). According to the research of The Oval Office the top branches which make use of live communication are: 1. Automotive 2. FMCG 3. ICT

4. Retail

5. Services 6. Constructions

7. Transport and Logistics 8. Industry 9. Pharma (Office, 2017) Based on the division of companies in Rotterdam out of information by de Kamer van Koophandel a new and suitable top is created, which is as followed: 1. Retail and FMCG 2. ICT

3. Services 4. Constructions

5. Transport and logistics Decided is to remove Automotive out of the top due to the fact that they are not relatively represented in Rotterdam. In the city of Rotterdam lots of small garages cannot be exactly verified wherefore the quantities

can be seen as unreliable. Next to that is decided to combine retail and fast moving customer goods (FMCG) as the boundaries between those two categories are vague and often seen as one branch.

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What is the current brand equity of VKOZ? Started with the identification of VKOZ will be looked at the brand salience, brand performance and brand imaginary according to the Brand Equity Model of Keller. It is important to have an idea of the current

performance and image of VKOZ in order to create a stronger network and brand for the future. Core competencies will support branding and differentiating as they focus on the core qualities and competencies of company, which are hard to replicate. Brand salience Brand salience is all about the identity; who am I? What is driving force behind VKOZ? If there is a clear and

recognisable identity people can connect to it. The brand identity prism by Kapferer helps building strong identities reflecting their values. Looking from the perspective of VKOZ culture and personality are of high importance. Culture The origin, the culture of a company is the basis for everything conducted: communication, products,

services, behaviour, etc. It forms the direct link between the brand and the organisation. The culture includes a variety of elements: norms and values, expectations, goals, mission, vision and work environment.

VKOZ believes in personal attention, co-creation in order to reach the strategic end goals together. This is also what they value and use as a guiding principle for everything they create. Next to that VKOZ likes to share their passion, knowledge and experiences. Therefore the website and other accounts are used to share inspiration: articles with tips and tricks, attention for new initiatives and developments, and a platform for event professionals. But also offline, with an open workspace for freelancers, entrepreneurs and interns where they can share knowledge and help each other. Personality The character of VKOZ, the way of communication and behaviour is a big aspect of forming the identity.

Personality is important to achieve differentiation and is based on culture: the norms and values. VKOZ highly values personal contact and co-creation, therefore an open, informal business writing style suits the best. Business writing is… 

… making use of shorter sentences

… using simpler structures

… an active voice

(O'Hara, 2014) In forms of behaviour VKOZ is open to everybody’s ideas and opinions, which can be seen in the discussions and comments on social media accounts. VKOZ also believes that together you can reach much more and therefore you need to help each other. Therefore lots of posts are liked and shared, but during personal

meetings tips are given which could help the other one with his or her work/project or people are connected to each other.

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“YOU HAVE TO

UNDERSTAND MY BUSINESS AND I SHOULD

UNDERSTAND YOURS. WHEN WE UNDERSTAND

EACH OTHER WE WILL REACH SOMETHING" MARCEL DE KRUYFF

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Core competencies Those characteristics go along with competencies and qualities, which are important for organizations to focus on according to Prahalad and Hamel (Prahalad & Hamel, 1997). When focussing on their competencies

and qualities and out of this drawn strengths, a company can differentiate from another as they are hard to replicate. Due to the aim of VKOZ for more corporate events, there is no focus on a completely new market

but on a new competence which suits the corporate market bests called ‘premier plus ten’. These days live communication and events are seen as a tool to reach strategic goals, which is confirmed by the director of

branch organisation IDEA too. VKOZ works with lots of passion and contains a work-approach which has a focus on co-creation and personal contact. These characteristics are typical VKOZ but also has a strong customer-fit with potential clients as together will be decided how the wanted goals can be reached. Also

the personal approach and co-creation is highly valued amongst companies as lots of them base their decision on the feeling they have after the first conversation. As Marcel de Kruyff of the Woningwachter

stated: “You have to understand my business and I should understand yours and if we do understand each other you will reach something”. Brand performance and brand imaginary Brand performance and imaginary is about the value-fit with the customers’ needs on psychological and social level as well as the product or service itself. This can be done directly, from customers their own

experience; or indirectly, with marketing (Keller K. L., 2001). Currently VKOZ has a broad network and portfolio: internationally and nationally and specifically in Rotterdam. As been researched earlier within the

competitor analysis on page 19, no real competitors on corporate events were found. Again during later research this got supported by Maarten (director of IDEA), as he highlighted: “Competition in Rotterdam: I

already told Marjolein that I have the idea that, it seems there are not much corporate event managers. People from Rotterdam, the image of Rotterdam, is of course a quite an interesting and outstanding image which could be used for the style of the company”. Most of the event agencies are focussing on companies’

parties and teambuilding. Since there was no specific target group defined for the marketing communication of VKOZ on forehand, everything communicated was not supported by research but out of own experiences.

Therefore everything about the event industry and Rotterdam could be of value for advertising. Exact needs and want of corporate enterprises will be discussed within the next paragraph.

All these components come together in everything communicated by VKOZ. The first impression, most of the time your personal page, is of high importance. A company should have a strong corporate story, a recognisable logo and appealing (cover) photo. Through a personal and authentic story potential clients can

be connected by means of emotions, as according to Nanneke van Drunen it turned out that people rather

do business with people than with companies (Drunen, 2018). This story can be seen as a guiding principle for everything communicated combined with a logo, all based on the personality and culture of the company.

53


What are the needs and wants of businesses regarding corporate events? In order to obtain the knowledge required, the analysis of the needs and wants of corporate enterprises will be based on ten interviews. The interviews will be coded according to the following items: organisation, developments, pains, gains, and research. Themes based on Keller’s Brand Equity Model and certain aspects of the Value Proposition Canvas and Maslow�s Hierarchy of Needs will be used to interpret and analyse the obtained data.

Thematic analysis; The Folio Analysis Theme:

Theme:

Theme:

Theme:

Time (4x)

Personal approach (7x)

Content-focused (3x)

Internal (10x)

Knowlegde (5x)

Strategic translation goals

Marketing

Help particular phases

(3x)

communication (2x)

(10x)

Passion (3x)

Focus from alleviation

Preferred partners (3x)

Pains

Costs (2x)

Gains

Developments

Organisation

to strategic thinking (1x) No industry events

Rotterdam (5x)

Specialism (2x)

Compliance

Creation of urgency (1x)

Term event (3x)

Creative thinking (3x)

Complete alleviation (1x)

Compliance agreement

Transparency (10x)

From big to small (1x)

Routine (2x)

close by (1x) agreement (2x)

(2x)

Co-creation (8x) Creative / innovative (4x) Communication (5x) Flexibility ( 2x) Aware of trends (1x)

The Folio Analysis is based on the outcomes of the conducted interviews and the codes identified during the analysis of the transcripts and extensive summaries. The themes are constructed out of aspects of the

conceptual model. Finally, it will represent the important aspects of corporate enterprises in Rotterdam and their needs and wants according to an event manager or event agency.

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Pains

Looking at the so called pains which reflects the negative emotions, the undesired situations and risks it can be seen that the biggest problems are the lack of knowledge and time. However, branch experts state that

the importance of time is and will continue to be overshadowed by the lack of knowledge. Due to the development of events as a strategic tool, companies are seeking for bureaus which are good in the translations of the goals and objectives into a creative idea. However the companies do like organising

events themselves, they do not have enough time and knowledge to deepen their insights into current developments, trends and designing an event from A to Z. Some companies also stated that they value help during the creative process. Sometimes they miss out on own creative and innovative ideas to keep

surprising their guests or just would like to have some new perspectives on their ideas, especially within big companies. This creativity difficulty has somewhat to do with the compliance regulations, which complicates

the organisation of business-to-business events. Companies are not allowed to invite businesses and clients for an all-in event, as they need to contain an objective attitude. Therefore the main headline is on the

content, which should be innovative, appealing and outstanding in such way businesses want to participate in the event, the event managers needs to create a so called ‘urgency’.

Gains

In term of expectations of the enterprises to an event agency, the opinions are very inline. There is a very high value for transparency and co-creation. All companies and branch experts interviewed pointed out

immediately that transparency, openness, is the most important aspect of a bureau. They want to know

what they get, how everything is going, and what can be expected of the bureau. This goes along with the aim for good communication and co-creation. The enterprises would like a personal approach, where all

opinions are valued and taken into consideration and with frequent updates on the how the process is going. The reason for that according to most of the companies is that they do not want any surprises in the end,

surprises which could have been taken into consideration or even be avoided. Supporting that by the ‘click’ lots of enterprises find important to feel. They want to feel the passion and have the trust in the event manager.

Developments

Corporate events are taken more and more seriously these days. The focus is more or sometimes even

completely on the content, since events are included within the marketing strategies. Events are seen as an informal way to maintain a good contact with customers, employees or other businesses and put something

in motion. Therefore the marketing communication is seen as important, due to the fact that people should be aware of the event organised in order to make it a success. Also the compliance regulation is a cause as

already mentioned before. Next to that some confusion was pointed out about the term ‘event’. Some companies, especially the bigger ones, highlighted to use different terms instead of event, since people still think of a party or something they have to buy a ticket for as they often associate it immediately with a

festival. Corporate events contain so much more and therefore companies decide to call it by the type of event like a seminar, kick-off, etc. or live communication.

The organisation of events

All companies interviewed organised the events themselves. Within the small and medium enterprises most of the time the marketing department is responsible for the events, whether in big companies there is a

special event department. The most common reason for the internal organisation is the budget, as a lot of

the organisation of an event can be done by themselves. Therefore no complete alleviation is wanted, but an expert for a specific aspect of the process could be of help according to the interviewees. The bigger

companies also pointed out to work with preferred partners, due to the frequently need an agreement was set-up.

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What are the highly valued distribution channels according to corporate enterprises? Desk research The IDC white paper, Social buying meets social selling: how trusted networks improve the purchase

experience, notes that 75% of the business-to-business buyers use social media during their decisionmaking process (Schaub, 2014). Therefore, as the research of Online Success stated, content marketing

cannot be forgotten in current business-to-business strategies. As the research showed 79 percent focusses on content marketing followed by search engine optimalisation (71%) and social media (58%) (Succes, 2017). A good profile starts with a strong brand story, recognisable logo and appealing cover photo. The most social media channels used by business-to-business marketers are LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube, Pinterest, and Instagram. Since 63% of marketers ranked LinkedIn the highest as most effective platform, the development of their reputation increased rapidly.

Source: SproutSocial (Jackson, 2018)

Most companies are on LinkedIn because of the generation of leads. However, the companies on Facebook,

Instagram, and others realize the importance of branding on social media instead of leads. Every social media platform has his own pros and ways of optimal usage, therefore each platform needs to be look at separately.

LinkedIn HubSpot found that LinkedIn’s traffic generates the highest visitor-to-lead conversion rate, with 2,74% which is almost tripled the rate of both Facebook (0.77%) and Twitter (0,69%) (Corliss, 2017). LinkedIn provides next to the corporate story the opportunity to add specialisms you know people are looking for,

which is a good opportunity for the search engine optimalisation. Another option launched last year, video, is one of the top priorities amongst B2B marketers according to the conducted research of LinkedIn. The

reason for this is that 90% of the responding users said that ‘product’ videos help in the decision-making process (Kolowich, 16 video marketing statistics to inform your q4 strategy, 2017) as well as a social video generates 1200% more shares than images and text (Public, 2017). An image says more than words and moving images even more and provides opportunities for creativity and storytelling as a story can be told.

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Beside video, most activity on LinkedIn will be: publishing updates, articles, or interact with others. CoSchedule analysed its own data with lots of other studies on the best times posting on social media and

compiled it into one infographic (Ellering, 2018). The best time to post on LinkedIn is before and after work and during the workweek, especially in the morning as it turned out that business people read LinkedIn in the morning as a kind of newspaper. Preferably post on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, while the most clicks and shares happen on Tuesdays. The timing: 

Tuesday

10.00h – 11.00h

Tuesday / Wednesday / Thursday

07.30h – 08.30h 12.00h

17.00h – 18.00h

Facebook A broadly used platform at home and at work. According to the research of Facebook, the medium amount of time spent on Facebook is 74% higher than others as well as their engagement with a variety of content.

Both LinkedIn and Facebook are platform based on interactions, however according to Statista Facebook

reported 1.45 billion active users in 2018, while LinkedIn reports 260 million active users (Statista, Most popular social networks worldwide as of April 2018, ranked by number of active users (in millions), 2018). Nevertheless Facebook is most of the time seen as more ‘fun’ and LinkedIn as more professional. The best

time to post on Facebook is between 13.00h – 16.00h, late into the weekends and week. In general most click troughs and shares are increase posting at: 13.00h, 15.00h, and 21.00h. Saturday and Sunday

Thursday and Friday

12.00h – 13.00h

Wednesday

15.00h

13.00h – 16.00h

Nevertheless, the best days for publishing on Facebook are on Thursday and Friday, as than the engagement is the highest. On Friday people seem to be happier, wherefore upbeat and funny content will have a better

audience-fit. In order to expand range it is recommended to join groups, follow influencers and participate in discussions with others.

Twitter Twitter is mostly seen as ‘something to read during down times’. Nevertheless with 500 million tweets send

per day, Twitter is considered to be one of the largest news sources. (Aslam, 2017) Important for a company profile on Twitter is the name, profile photo, header image and the bio. These four elements create the image

of your company, it’s the first impression they get. The best time to tweet for business-to-business is mostly during the workweek, though some branches might have higher audiences on the weekend. The exact times are:

Monday – Friday

12.00h – 15.00h and 17.00h

Wednesday noon

17.00h – 18.00h

The most click troughs are between 17.00h and 18.00h and at 15.00h (Ellering, 2018).

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Instagram A mobile platform that tend to use the network all day long, a platform where companies can behave more like people and less like a business. A platform were engaging with the audience will take place through

visual content like illustrations, photos, GIFs and videos. Hereby creating customer-relations can be built in another way than the other platforms. In 2017 there were more than 25 million company profiles on

Instagram and it was expected to grow even more (Statista, number of active Instagram business profiles from September 2016 to November 2017, 2017).There are different strategies which are successfully used by leading business-to-business accounts: 

Embrace user-generated content

The leads want unique and authentic content which shows your work culture, ideas and products. Realistic and real-time content helps forming a connection rather than extremely professionallooking content which can be seen as very formal, since people are searching for the click with their selves. The launched option in 2016, live streaming, is unfiltered and therefore completely you. 

Show the related values with customers

Visual storytelling can be used to tell interesting stories, which gets the people to engage with you. 

Use hashtags for interaction, get involved in the niche

If you take the time for engaging with others they would do the same with you. 

Physical products

The survey of Instagram amongst its users showed that 60% of the people discovers new products on Instagram (Instagram, 2018). (Kononenko, 2017) For VKOZ embracing user generated content provides a good opportunity for expanding the range in visibility, as you get visible for all followers of the other user as well. The more followers the other page has, the higher the opportunity for new own followers or at least recognition. Also the new algorithm from June

onward focusses on interests, so the more you post and with frequently used hashtags the more content of VKOZ will appear.

The best time for posting on Instagram is throughout the week and between 20.00h and 21.00h, while

posting between 15.00h and 16.00h is recommended to avoid. This is because Instagram is mostly used before or after work, wherefore it is better to post during off-work hours. 

Monday and Thursday

expect 15.00h – 16.00h

Videos any day

09.00h – 20.00h

Experiment with

(Ellering, 2018)

14.00h / 17.00h and Wednesday at 19.00h

58


Interviews Next to desk research, information of interviews is needed in order to find out if which channels the target group of VKOZ is using and if that can be compared with the outcomes of previous conducted studies and research.

Thematic analysis; The Folio Analysis Theme:

Theme:

Research

Important for research

Network 10

Related portfolio 6

Google 2

Open – transparent 4

Reviews (positive) 4

Costs 1

Website 2

Knowledge/ expertise 3

(dachser)

Instagram 2

Mysterious aspect 1

Social in general 2

Partners 1

LinkedIn 2

Quality mark 1

Personal 2

Event locations 1 Twitter 1 Blog 1

Location 1

Research methods used by enterprises

Analysing the research methods the enterprises use in order to find an event agency one method stand out immediately, the network. All interviewees start their search with contacting their network. Most of them

start with their search online on websites and social accounts in order to finally compare or check the options given by the network. When the search takes place online the most used are the website and social accounts. Amongst the social accounts Instagram and LinkedIn are mentioned as the most common. Especially Instagram is used for gaining inspiration and getting new and innovative ideas.

Important for enterprises their research

But what are, according to the interviewed companies, important aspects to look for during their search? For all companies the most important aspect was the portfolio. Companies would like to see what kind of experience the event bureau has and if that has some overlap with their own events or ideas. Also the portfolio provides an insight into what the event bureau is capable of and a small impression of their

creativity. Next to that, transparency is also highly valued by means of online communication. The website and other platforms should provide a clear and open insight into the company, what can be expected and what their expertise is. The expertise can also be shown by means of a blog or knowledge articles written by the company, however this is not as important as the portfolio.

59


60


CONCLUSIONS The purpose of the research was to investigate how the brand of VKOZ can be

strengthened with a better customer-fit with the market of the corporate enterprises. Qualitative methods are used by means of interviews to gain deeper

insight into the needs, wants and valued distribution channels by corporate enterprises. The brand equity of VKOZ and more insight into distribution channels are supported by desk research.

61


What does the brand equity of VKOZ look-like? To start off with the identity of VKOZ; who is VKOZ and what is the driving force behind it? According to Kapferer the identity is based on culture and personality. VKOZ believes in a personal approach and working

together to the end goal, which is a guiding principle for everything they do and publish. Merging that with their passion for the event industry and especially corporate, their accounts and website will be used as

platforms for inspiration. This combined with the way of communicating and behaving, the character of VKOZ

will form the way people see VKOZ. VKOZ aims to be open for everyone’s ideas and opinions which should be visible on the platforms by means of engagement in conversations, sharing, etc. Due to the aimed

transition of VKOZ from freelancer to entrepreneur it is important that VKOZ is profiled as a brand instead of the focus on Marjolein herself. A new corporate story, the logo as profile picture with a relating cover

photo should be the start of building a brand around VKOZ. Also the focus on the core competencies should be pointed out within the new strategy. The core competencies are based on the qualities of VKOZ compared with the needs and wants of the target group: co-creation, strategic thinking and openness.

What are the needs and wants of businesses regarding corporate events? The second research question is: what are the needs and wants of enterprises regarding corporate events? Based on the findings, the needs of enterprises can be derived. The most important reason for companies

to hire an event agency is the lack of own knowledge. Firstly and still important, the most common reason was lack of time, but due to the development of events as strategic tools, the strategic mind-set and knowledge became more important. As the director of branch organisation IDEA stated: First the strategic translation: like what is their goal the client wants to reach? Thereafter an agency is, if I am correct, also capable of taking care of a flawless production. But that is not the first argument of getting the client

involved, by highlighting the value of your agency, anymore”. This development along with the compliance regulation influences the focus of the event to content. Especially for the bigger companies a kind of, by

Robeco so called urgency, is needed to be created: “The urgency to get somewhere. Now you try with a sort of small program, acuminated what is really relevant for an X amount of clients. In fact you allured them with

that”. This requires creative and innovative thinking, which is partly therefore highly valued by companies. One of the strengths of VKOZ is the passion and experience with corporate events and businesses and therefore it can be concluded that strategic thinking is a core competency where should be focussed on.

Next to that co-creation is mentioned as very important, “Knowledge is power. You have to understand my

business and I should understand yours and if we do understand each other you will reach something” – Marcel de Kruyff from Woningwachter. Since almost all companies organise the events themselves, mostly because of the budget, no complete alleviation is needed but some help during specific phase of the process is wanted. In order to be able to translate the objectives of a company into an event and completely

understand what is wanted from you as event manager, good communication and cooperation is key.

Another reason out of the perspective of the companies is to avoid risks and surprises, as a representative of a large transport and logistics company stated: “That I am aware of everything that is going to happen and do not have any surprises on the day itself”. As coherence factor to that is transparency. All people

interviewed value and expect transparency of the event agency, as they want to know what to expect: “I find

it very important that a company is open and transparent, as I want to know who I am doing business with”.

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VKOZ as an agency from Rotterdam is by half of the people mentioned as valuable. Some because of the fact that they have their own origin in Rotterdam and want to stick to that, others they believe it is easier to

switch and getting things arranged as the network and suppliers are close by, but also because some of

them appreciate the work- and communication approach which is stated to be more direct. “I think that you switch faster, as well as I think that the mentality here is different from for example Brabant” – Monique (BAM). As research showed that there is not real competition yet for VKOZ in Rotterdam and the outstanding image the city has, this could be an opportunity for VKOZ to reach the target group in the city.

What are the highly valued distribution channels according to corporate enterprises? Clearly, the most important channel was the network. All companies will start with their research asking help within their network. It can be concluded that reasons for this could be reliable and thrust worthy verification and experience and the personal approach which is wanted, companies want to feel the ‘click’ and have the trust that everything will be arranged properly, as Michael Bekkers from Varo Energy stated: “When you

speak with someone more open, honestly and if there is a click there is simplicity”. Also Maarten Schram,

director of Branch organisation IDEA agreed upon this statement. A strong network around the brand VKOZ could increase the brand awareness, since more people know about you. Combining this offline advantage with a suitable marketing communication strategy focused on online platforms due to the digitalization of the world, the visibility will be developed as Marcel de Kruyff said: “The power of repeating. You must be

seen by others”. Analysing the outcomes about the most effective social media channels of desk research with the interviews it is overall a match. However, in the study of Content Marketing all platforms are

included used worldwide. For example, google+ is not such a big platform within the Netherlands. Therefore the final platforms next to the website will be LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, which will provide

a diverse cluster of platforms; from visual- to content-focused. For instance, Instagram is mostly used by companies as an informal platform to bond with people and share ideas, while people use them just for

inspiration: “Instagram is a nice source for inspiration, but would not make the final choice” – Representative of Transport and logistics company.

But content do they value on the accounts? Overall a more informal and personal way of communication is mentioned as pleasing. The companies want to be able to feel the connection, similarities and believe your

story, a way of accomplish this is feeling is an open and transparent way of communication. Furthermore, the portfolio is the first and meaningful component people look at. They want to compare the experience

with their own ideas as a kind of reference in terms of capability as Piet de Kramer of DHL said: “At the website you will find examples of the events they have done and based on that you make an appointment”. Currently, there is no real quality mark within the event industry, which could provide more confidentiality

and an easier way of searching for a trustworthy agency. Nevertheless, the event industry organisations IDEA and CLC Vecta are working on it. Furthermore, the indication of knowledge and expertise by means of a blog for example, are influencing factors.

63


DESIGN IS THE SILENT AMBASSADOR OF YOUR BRAND PAUL RAND

64


Recommendations and organizational goals

Based on the conclusions the following recommendations are proposed. These recommendations will contribute to the development of VKOZ as a brand by means of a new marketing communication plan with the focus on corporate enterprises. Optimalisation of profiles To start off creating a strong brand around VKOZ by means of a new communication strategy, the first step

is optimising the platforms used. The platforms are the basis for the communication and the first impression someone gets off the company. Currently, the corporate story has more the focus on the qualities of Marjolein and is not somewhat specified to a certain target group. Since there is the aim for more corporate

events, the content published should be appealing for them. Next to that a content strategy will be created, which will provide an overview when to post what and where. Also main themes will be assigned to certain periods in order to structure the posting process. Focus on core competencies Currently, the unique selling points and the core competencies of VKOZ are not highlighted that well on the

website or other platforms. Also the unique selling points set before just out of own thoughts are slightly

different than what the business value. Nevertheless, the competencies of VKOZ features the aspects needed and wished for by the target group. Therefore, it is recommended to highlight the core competencies in order to attract the readers’ attention by means of value-fit. Invest in membership MKB Rotterdam Since the network turned out to be the start of the research for an event agency, the network of VKOZ is

needed to expand even more. Therefore, an active networking approach is recommended. The biggest

network organisation in Rotterdam is MKB Rotterdam Rijnmond. Field research showed that within this organization there is an open atmosphere and all people are willing to help each other. The organization

contains lots of members, but still no event agency, which provides great opportunities for VKOZ. When the membership is experienced as pleasing, it can be decided to become an ambassador who maintains the

contact with thirty members, which creates closer and inner circles whereby stronger bonds can be created. Keep on track of development of quality mark

These days sponsors, suppliers and organisers have a wish for set agreements and guidelines due to the increase of events. Within the Netherlands two organisations are seen as leading and are busy creating a

quality mark, these are CLC Vecta and iDEA. Since it is a long term investment and the wish is upcoming, it is recommended to keep an eye on the development and follow the process. In the meanwhile compare both organisations in order to find out the differences.

Active and targeted communication on website and social

At the moment there is no marketing communication strategy for a specific target group in mind. Also the communication is inbound and should be changed into outbound, the target group should be actively attracted. A good and efficient strategy goes along with expanding the range. With being active the people keep seeing the brand and start to recognize it, which is the strength of repetition.

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MARKETING COM PLA

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OMMUNICATION LAN

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TARGET GROUP

Corporate enterprises located within the Rotterdam Region

GOAL

To be leading in corporate event management in Rotterdam within five years.

STRATEGY

To grow within five years into a strong brand where

people associate VKOZ with quality corporate events that reach strategic goals by use of a personal approach.

OBJECTIVE Creating a new client-fit marketing communication plan to strengthen the visibility and awareness of VKOZ as an expert in corporate event management.

TACTIC

Selecting the most effective marketing communication instruments for online as well as offline channels, based on the needs, wants and used tools of corporate enterprises.

Online

Offline

LinkedIn

Partnerships

Instagram

Advertisement

Website Facebook Twitter

Network Quality mark

Printed matter

Advertisement

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Nowadays it is important for a brand to have a strong basis, a corporate story. A story where people can

relate themselves with, which will create a bond. The reason for this is because of the need for a personal approach, as people want to be involved in the process and feel a connection. But not only in the story behind the company, also a personal and transparent approach is very important these days. The

companies want to be involved in the process and receive regular updates, so they know what is going on and have no unexpected surprises in the end. Since VKOZ works with lots of passion and a personal

approach as VKOZ believes in co-creation to reach the (strategic) goals here is a perfect fit. This can already been seen on the website, which is used as a platform for experts, students and all other people interested in the field of event management and Rotterdam by means of a blog.

Since VKOZ is undergoing the transition from freelancer to entrepreneur, the corporate story should no

longer focus on Marjolein van Rosmalen but on VKOZ and its belonging norms and values which will be use as guiding principles. Next to the corporate story, the personality represented by the look-and-feel, will be used in order to create a strong overall visibility for VKOZ on all platforms, which refers to the power of repetition. The more you are seen and people read about you, the better they will remember you. The

online platforms are, next to an increase in the visibility, a strong follow-up for word-of mouth advertising. All questioned companies start with their search within their network. The most important reason for that is the reliability and verification of experiences and stories. The platforms are used to check the portfolio

and expertise, wherefore a challenge arise for VKOZ as the portfolio contains big events which could be a reason for companies with smaller events to hold back. This due to the fact that the companies are looking for similarities with their own events, wishes and creative and innovative ideas, which fit their wishes and company’s DNA. Next to the website, social accounts are checked by the companies as well. The most used social accounts mentioned in the interviews were LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram. Even though Instagram is not that

popular amongst businesses yet, there are some opportunities to strengthen the brand of VKOZ. Since the interviewees stated to use Instagram for inspiration, it can be seen as a platform to awake people’s interest and let them get in touch with VKOZ. The owners of Instagram also stated that Instagram is a good platform for creating more brand awareness, which is followed-up by Facebook. Facebook is often used for generating more leads, and click troughs to the website.

Since no real competition for VKOZ is seen, focussing on corporate enterprises will be a good opportunity for repositioning VKOZ during its current period of growth. VKOZ its values, competencies, experience and expertise match with the needs and wants of corporate enterprises. However, this is not seen in current marketing communication tools yet wherefore a new communication plan is needed with the focus on

online channels. When the right communication tools are used, the corporate enterprises will be attracted,

bonds will be created and the brand equity around VKOZ will be strengthened. Finally, this will lead to more (smaller) events throughout the year, which will result in a more stable balance between the work force

and income. This will reduce the risks and create a better continuity for VKOZ what will positively contribute to VKOZ’s period of growth.

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SHORT TERM IMPLEMENTATIONS In order to create a strong brand around VKOZ the

communication and visibility should all be in line in order to create a strong basis. Currently, the used channels are not in line by means of visuals, colour and writing style. Therefore it is important to start with optimalisation of existing channels and

create accounts for the new channels, all with the same lookand-feel so the people will recognise VKOZ more easily. The

corporate design of all documents and channels will support and based on the expert status VKOZ wants to project. The design will be as followed: The logo The logo consists of an eye which represents the strong eye for

details. This characteristic is highly valued in the field of event management and it typifies the owner of VKOZ. The letter type Chosen is for a solid letter type based on the Dutch apothegm ‘It stands as house // Het staat als een huis’. The basis for the usage of this apothegm is that you build an event from the

bottom. Finally, the decision is made Titillium Web. Titillium Web is a clean letter type with solid letters and numbers, but not that

familiar amongst people. Since VKOZ wants to be outstanding and differentiate from competitors this should be taken into consideration in every decision made. The colours

According to a research conducted by Xerox was stated that a colour can increase brand recognition by 80 percent (Xerox

Corporation and International communications research, 2003). VKOZ wants to operate in the industry of corporate enterprises

wherefore clean use of colours is the best fit. Next to that the focus is wanted to be on the portfolio and share of expertise,

which stands out now by means of colourful visuals. The chosen colours are a mix of so called neutral colours (black, grey and

white) and one cool colour (a mix of blue and turquoise). The neutral colours will provide a great background in design and downs the use of the bold colours.

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o

Black - formality, classy

Within the corporate industry a more formal and structured work approach is used. Even though VKOZ as well as the interviewed companies value a personal approach and personality

it will be seen as, compared to the informal agencies focusing on teambuilding for example, a formal approach with a personal touch. o

Grey – Security, reliability, intelligence

The conducted interviews turned out that people want to have a kind of ‘safe’ feeling. They want to feel the trust in terms of capability of an event agency, that he or she will do their job according to their wishes and DNA without unexpected surprises. o

White – clean, purity, goodness

VKOZ finds it important to be open, pure and transparent. Do what you promise and know what you can expect. This is for example done by means of good and regular communication throughout the whole process. o

Blue, turquoise – protection, loyalty, and trust

Events quite big expenditures and therefore seen as a ‘luxury product’, which means that they are not essential but highly desired. Since it is mostly quite a big expenditure, it is important

that people trust you as an event agency and have faith in your capabilities. However when people do trust an event agency they tend to become loyal as they have good experiences and are sure of a good outcome. (Zorzini, 2012) The writing style As already discussed earlier VKOZ values a personal approach but with a formal touch. Therefore an open and informal way of business style suits VKOZ the best. This means that the writing is ‘active’: the sentences are shorter, simple structures and an active voice. The communicating language is Dutch, since the focus is on companies located in the Rotterdam Region.

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The optimisation of the website The new website was released last year, with the purpose to create a platform where knowledge, experiences and inspiration on events and Rotterdam can be shared. The website generated much more

incoming traffic and has efficient SEO, as the position on Google raised to position 1. Nevertheless it is important to keep updating, improving and posting new content in order to keep that position. April was a

very busy month and the focus was therefore less on being online, which reflected the position on Google

which dropped temporarily to position 3. Even though the new website gained more leads, there is still space for improvements to make it even better.

The home page The home page is the first thing the visitor sees. Therefore it is important that the first impression is good

and the wanted feeling is created, as you can never change a first impression. In order to avoid misunderstandings and give immediately the wanted impression some changes are recommended: 

Services: concept – project management– communication – production

The first word could raise some confusion. What does a concept contain? What does it exactly mean? For event managers the concept in the beginning of the process is clear, but for people who are not

familiar with it the word could mean a lot of things. Therefore, concept development would avoid misunderstandings along with the small explanatory one liner. 

Add the core competencies, the unique selling points of VKOZ. These are now missing at the home page and are hidden away somewhere in other pages.

The guidance of the website should be as easy as possible. A search engine is therefore an easy and

valuable tool for visitors to find the needed information without any effort. The search bar is now at in the footer at the bottom of the page, hidden between lots of information. Displacement of the search bar till the top of the home page will make it easier for the visitor. 

Call to action should be added to triggers the people to do something as well as it is clear where to

go/click for action when they want to get in contact which makes it easier for them. Change the call to action on the home page based on what is going on. For example, when the whitepaper just came out refer to that. 

Change the selection of the three events displayed as examples out of the categories sport, culture and corporate into three examples which can refer to a business event. Hereby the interest of the corporate clients for the portfolio will be triggered already.

NOTE: written terms

all

articles

and are

SEO

already

published by VKOZ

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Page: about VKOZ The story about VKOZ and its origin is now very focused on Marjolein herself. Since VKOZ is undergoing the transition from freelancer to entrepreneur, the focus should be on VKOZ rather than Marjolein. What does VKOZ stands for? For every event a customized team

VKOZ is an all-round event and communication bureau which believes in co-creation: working to an end goal together. Every event is unique and seeks for a customised solution for reaching the goals, whether this is

for a product launch, exchange of knowledge or to thank employees for the past year. With broad knowledge

and expertise in the event industry and reliable freelancers and partners we select to best possible team for your event. We create an unforgettable event! From idea to event

VKOZ strives for success of your event. Therefore, we think along with the strategic goals of your company and pay lots of attention to communication. The reason for this is as Marjolein always states: “Everything the client wants can be organised, however people should know about it to make it a success”. This is the reason why VKOZ divided the process from an idea to an event into four phases: concept development,

project management, communication and production. You can choose for a total approach or only what applies to you. Read also: The events of VKOZ, surprising, bonding and inspiring How it all started

Marjolein van Rosmalen started in 2010 with VKOZ after a career of 15 years in the business travel and event industry. She worked for international companies such as ATP and Carlson Wagonlit Travel, with

clients in differrent branches within the small and medium enterprises, government and multinationals. Here she specialised herself in project- and interim event manager. Also her believe in personal attention,

strategic thinking and collaboration for reaching (strategic) goals grew. That believe in combination with her

qualities such as leading teams, bringing structure, keep the overview and eye for details came together amongst the name VKOZ. Our passion and expertise, we love to share it

Besides working on a large diversity of events, the team of VKOZ likes to share their passion, knowledge and experiences in the field of events, the city Rotterdam and the corporate market. Therefore the website and

social media channels are meant to share inspiration: articles with tips and tricks, attention for new initiatives and developments and a platform for event professionals. But also offline VKOZ is constantly in

development with an inspiring work space at the Coolsingel, where a team of freelancers, professionals, but

also interns are working together and make use of each other’s talents. Everyone VKOZ works with stands for: craftsmanship, collaboration, innovation, hands-on approach, unburdening and results. In this way VKOZ keeps surprising their clients and visitors with new and outstanding concepts and ideas. Read also: How does VKOZ makes an unforgettable moment of your event?

“Getting together is the start; staying together is progress; working together is success” – Henry Ford VKOZ looks forward to work together on your success Visit us at the Coolsingel and meet VKOZ See: https://www.vkoz.nl/waar-staat-vkoz-eigenlijk-voor/

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Page: what kind of events organises VKOZ The page is a sum-up of the reasons why someone should organise an event and which events VKOZ organises. The personal approach and structure was not that convenient and therefore it is recommended to update this page by means of text and structured layout. Refer to current developments and write in an active an appealing manner for businesses.

Events of VKOZ: surprising, bonding and inspiring

The world is digitalizing which results in a stronger aim for humane and personal contact, which also has an

influence on the corporate enterprises. In all sectors the marketing budgets grow and the amount of events and live communication increases. In 2013 this percentage was around 11 percent while in 2016 it more than quadrupled till 51 percent.

An event is seen as a powerful communication tool to both employees, as partners and clients. An event can be used to change people’s mind-set in a surprising way and involve them personally, it goes beyond the event itself. Besides that there are more diverse benefits of an event, as an event… •... is interactive

• … is personalized and targeted

• … provides attention and is unique • … contributes to strategic goals

• … fits the current personalization and festival trend Your goal is central in the whole process and we think out of the perspective of the visitors. Organising an event always goes along with a certain aim. There can be lots of different motives for the organisation of an event, from simple to complex with diverse objectives. The most common goals are: • Share knowledge or information

• Maintain and improvement of internal and external relations • Motiving or rewarding staff

• Strengthen the image or expand the brand awareness • Profitable or fundraising

Which events do we organise?

Often events or live communication are divided in diverse categories, but it is not always immediately clear where

your events belong. The boundaries fade because of diverse objectives an event can have and therefore it could be a mix of for example corporate and cultural. In short, it pays off to look out with broad perspective to your event and objectives

SPORTIVE

CORPORATE

CULTURAL

Sport is an active way to connect

In general corporate events can

Culture is broad concept and all

people and sharing of (unique)

be divided into internal and

experiences. So there are amongst

external, think of:

others:

Public event

Congresses and fairs

(inter)national sport

Openings and kick-offs

tournaments

Product presentations

Relation- and sponsor

Relation events and

events 

have

something

to

do

with

nationality, faith, wishes and needs of people. Think of:

events are divergent. They could

parties

Performances and exhibitions

Festivals and concerts

Cultural manifestations

Readings and openings

Teambuilding See https://www.vkoz.nl/wat-voor-evenementen-organiseert-vkoz/

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The optimisation of existing social networks and creating new ones For all channels there are some actions needed in order to make sure that they are all in line by means of look-and-feel. The profile picture should be exchanged for the recognisable logo of VKOZ, a new cover photo with an appealing statement of VKOZ will be designed and a new strong corporate story will be written based on the complete brand story published on the website.

The new short corporate story:

VKOZ is a Rotterdam event and communication agency that believes in co-creation: working together to reach a goal. Every event is unique and craving for a customized solution to reach their goals, whether this is a product launch, sharing knowledge or thanking your staff for the past year. With lots of knowledge and

expertise of the event branch, reliable freelancers and partners we select for every event the best team. We are going for the best possible customer experiences, so you reach your target without any worries. We make an unforgettable moment of your event!

Our passion and knowledge, we love to share it with you Visit us at the Coolsingel and meet VKOZ Call, mail, or follow us on social

The new cover photo

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LinkedIn Next to the optimisations for all accounts LinkedIn provides the opportunity to add specialisms. These

specialisms could add extra characteristics which are not mentioned in the corporate story as well as it increases the SEO on LinkedIn and Google. The specialisms are a combination of personal characteristics, competencies and functions. The specialisms are as followed:

Live communication · passionate · inventive · corporate and mixed events · strategic oriented · project management · event marketing

Facebook Within the new strategy Facebook will be added as well. Before there was a Facebook-account but nothing was done with it. For Facebook it is important that the target group is actively followed and VKOZ is engaged in related groups. Important for Facebook is that the shared articles and tips and tricks originally from the

website, are nicely introduced with an attractive text and visual. Also is recommended to ‘boost’ interesting and highly valued articles to make sure they get visible in the timelines of people interested. Boosting, means that you pay an amount of money to expand your range, since Facebook works with selections. Since Facebook provides lots of possibilities, some more difficult than the other, Facebook Blueprint can help as their online training for advertisements are provided.

Also creating a so called ‘Canvas’ on Facebook, which will help arising the interest amongst (potential) clients. A canvas is a tool available for mobile versions, which makes use of full-screen inspiring video’s and pictures to create multi-media stories, without using the standard advertisements within the time lines. People can interactively experience your story by means of tilting for viewing panoramic images, swipe trough images via a carousel, zoom in into details, etc. An example of a canvas for VKOZ can be found in appendix 3.

Twitter Twitter is all about the latest news and updates, therefore it is important that VKOZ checks the account every day and is actively involved. VKOZ publishes own articles based on the new updates on the website with again an attractive and appealing introduction, so the attention of the reader will be grabbed. Also important new features of others will be shared and retweeted.

Instagram Instagram is new platform added and is all about visual content. I recommended to test Instagram for one

year and then evaluate the process and benefits, as Instagram for businesses is still in development and the popularity within the Netherlands growing. For the Instagram page user-generated content would be a great opportunity for interesting visuals of events and Rotterdam on the account as well as interaction will be

created between followers and it leads followers of the original picture to the page of VKOZ. Next to that own visuals related to the written blogs can be published as well as live updates on what is going on at VKOZ

and its events. Recommended is to use on app and filter for all pictures so there is a consistency in lookand-feel all over the page, since all pictures are presented next and under each other. The filter should fit the corporate design of VKOZ so: black, white, greyish, and petrol/blue.

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Content strategy A schedule will be created per week, which visualizes what should be done and when with the focus on sharing knowledge and expertise. As research showed for all platform there are set times and days a post is the most effective, therefore the scheduled is based on that. The calendar also provides opportunities for pro-active client approach as all holidays and other special days are presented, such as the day of the

secretaries, the beach opening, start of the congress preparations, etc. The complete overview can be found in appendix 4. Based on the complete overview a weekly schedule can be created, which sets what to post when and where.

CONTENT AGENDA WEEK 4 TO 10 JUNE

MONTH OF THE ARCHITECTURE

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

World environment day

WEBSITE

Publish article

construction &

architecture and events

LINKEDIN

08.30h intro

12.00h share

sustainability on

article construction

events and link to

events of Monday

article ‘7 trends in event and

businesses” TWITTER

15.00h share article

Link to HAKA event

1200h copy LinkedIn

15.00h slogan

17.00h share

15.00h share

Rotterdam

Rotterdam

article locations in

about events and sustainability

FACEBOOK

15.00h copy LinkedIn

article of a

15.00h did you know….

organisation FE. Open Roof Days

15.00h share

article locations in Rotterdam

13.00h share article of a

Rotterdam

15.00h did you know…

organisation FE. Open Roof Days

INSTAGRAM

1500h post photo with link to article

15.00h photo incl.

19.00h visual with

16.00h tip/visual

sustainability

Rotterdam (user-

festival”

quote on

unique location in generated)

‘We love space

(use photo of festival)

10.00h tip for

weekend ZigZag City plus an

interesting fact (use photo of festival)

Note! The SEO terms are important for not only LinkedIn but for all online channels, as they affect the online visibility of VKOZ. The following words cover all aspects of VKOZ and can be used in all publications:

Interim event management · live communication · organization bureau · corporate and mixed events · event marketing · strategic oriented

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Pro-active potential client approach Next to the passive approach by sending content also a pro-active potential client approach will strengthen VKOZ and its network. Nevertheless, due to all regulations such as compliance for example this is getting more and more difficult. Even though a few options are presented: 

Surprise companies and organisations with your own ideas without them asking for it. When you

help people at a certain point when they do not expect it, you surprise them and leave a very good (first) impression which will likely to stay in mind.

A good opportunity is a new contact out of the interviews and the network events of MKB Rotterdam Rijnmond, called Datamatch. This company is an expert in collecting big data and the entire registration around it, so also ticket registration during events. Nevertheless the owner of

Datamatch is not aware of all the opportunities and possibilities for them within the event industry. Providing an overview for the invitation process for example, could give him an impression of what he can do with it and the related benefits as well as he sees what VKOZ is capable of and a possible partnership can arise. 

Sending a nice and personalized message after a meeting. For example during the events of MKB

Rotterdam Rijnmond new companies and people will be met, which could be a potential client. When a nice conversation took place send a personal email or message elsewhere as a reminder. Show

your interest in the company and maybe reflect on it with the point mentioned before, depending on the conversation. Sending a postcard will let stand VKOZ in the jungle of emails in this digital age. 

When potential clients are followed actively on social the posts can be based on what is going on within a certain company. For example, a big office celebrates its 25 years jubilee in a year of half a

year, some post related to such an event can be published and shared in order to grab the reader’s attention. Advertisements Businesses are always looking for affordable advertisements, they want to get as much as possible out of a small budget. Therefore a good way is to use free publicity. Being mentioned in an industry letter, (local)

newspapers, on blogs, forums, and in social media can be a big win as you can expose to a broader range of customers. According to a study of Nielsen, articles from credible sites and authors lifted the brand

acquaintance with 88 percent more than paid advertising (Cheng, Brisson, & Hay, 2014). When a business is regularly quoted, the expert status will increase as people think that you are an expert out of natural assumption. Nevertheless you cannot control free publicity, in order to have a little influence you can write a strong press release with news value, which you can send to different sites and editorial offices. As a member of branch organisation eventbranche.nl VKOZ has opportunity to publish two press releases per year on their website, newsletter and they decide if it will be published in their quarterly magazine. In order to increase the awareness amongst other experts, but also event departments within companies these opportunity could be of high value. Publish in October for example an article on the new whitepaper written

by VKOZ on the needs and wants of corporate enterprises regarding events (in Rotterdam). This article can also be send to other sites such as: eventplanner.nl, events.nl, and congreswereld.nl Another publication option is within the magazine of MKB Rotterdam. Once in a while they publish an article of two pages on members of MKB who start cooperating together. Since VKOZ is setting-up a partnership with De Filmmakelaar this could be a good opportunity to bring VKOZ into the light. VKOZ is a new member

and therefore not many members know about it yet. So this article will create more awareness amongst all members, which you can meet the next network event.

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“EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION IS 20% WHAT YOU KNOW AND 80% HOW YOU FEEL ABOUT WHAT YOU KNOW” JIM ROHN

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Expend portfolio As research showed, the portfolio is of high importance for the enterprises. They like to see what kind of

events have been organised already and compare that to their own ideas and wishes in order to form an idea of the company’s capability to fulfil their needs. Due to the total career of Marjolein van Rosmalen and her

big network amongst big organisations the portfolio of VKOZ contains big events in diverse branches, such as sport and cultural. In order to prove to the capability of (smaller) corporate events inspiration events can

be used which will provide the opportunity to trigger them with outstanding ideas which fit their needs and wants. Based on the content strategy an introductionary article, ‘Corporate events, what are they exactly?’ and four types of corporate events are chosen and worked out. Nevertheless these are concepts for inspiration wherefore no exact details are given in order to keep the ideas within VKOZ and for its clients.

Corporate events, what are they exactly?

These days’ corporate events are no longer just for bringing people together at a nice location with food and drinks to bring a message. Nowadays, corporate enterprises see events as an important ‘live’ strategic communication tool to reach the goals and objectives. According the IPA Bellwether Report on quarter four of 2017, the event budget raised again for the seventeenth quarter in a row with 5,5 percent and is expected

to continue growing (Markit Economics, 2017). An event is seen as a powerful communication tool for as well business-to-business, as business-to-consumer and business-to employees. Due to the different target groups and goals it is important the select the most effective type of a corporate event. In general corporate events are divided amongst four categories: brand events, internal events, relation events and knowledge events. Brand events These days the boundaries between marketing and communication are faded, wherefore we should be impact and effect driven. The customers should be central in the marketing as well as a strong customer

experiences is important to create, in order for rise the interest of people and create loyalty. For example when you launch a product, think big! Make use of the press, influencers in order to create awareness and

maybe even fans. A good way for your product launch could be a trade fair as is further explained in: Be an

inspiration for others, just because you are different. Internal events

The most common reason for an internal event is the motivation and rewarding of employees. An internal event has an informal atmosphere as the employees need to feel relaxed, open by means of an ideal mix between fun, entertainment and content. Before, internal events were mostly seen as a party to reward

employees, but currently the value of events is seen as a strong option to combine formal content with fun.

However, it could also be a good tool for (re-)creating commitment after a reorganisation. More inspiration

can be read in ‘About U’ Relation events

On top of the marketing communication tools is the maintenance of strong business relations. Therefore

these events are organised with the goal to highlight the value of appreciated relations and maintain contact. A relation event is characterized by its informal aspects, however there should be a good balance between

pampering and influencing. Depending on the goal of the meeting it can also be possible to invite the partners

or families of the relations. Most of the time relation events take place at an already existing event, but how can you give that your own ‘business’ touch? See ‘An experience is special, but you make it unique’. Knowledge events

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Knowledge events

The most important goal for symposia, congresses, workshops and seminars is the transfer of knowledge. This can be one- or two-sided, however these days interaction is highly valued. The type of knowledge event and the name is based on the scenario which fits the target group:

Symposia

A short, one-day meeting with the focus on one theme, where by means of a forum discussion

reciprocal knowledge will be exchanged. The visitors of a symposia have, mostly, an academic background or are experts in that specific field.

Congress

A (few days) meeting where one theme is supported by authorative speakers and parallel activities. Most of the time the target group forms an international circle. 7

Workshop

A one-day work meeting for small groups. A workshop is focused on the transfer of skills and explanation and demonstration of services and products.

Seminar

A seminar is a study meeting of one days whereby receiving information and possibility for asking questions are central. Mostly, the size of a seminar is quiet small and the participants are interested in the knowledge of the experts.

These days an experience empowers the transfer of knowledge. This can be created by a surprising setting, an interactive element, etc. Read also Meet & Learn for more inspiration

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BE AN INSPIRATION FOR OTHERS, JUST BECAUSE YOU ARE DIFFERENT What

Trade fair

Where

Event hall

Target group B2C Goal

Brand awareness

Added value Improvement internal

of

and

external relations

A new product developed and ready to surprise the market? A trade far is the perfect way to inform customers and let them taste your ‘new’ products or services. It is for customers the ideal way to speak with different experts in

order to be able to compare them with each other. Unfortunately, a trade fair is often associated with monotonic, 2d and an ad hoc matter. Though, with the right approach and creative mind-set a trade fair can strengthen the

supply and demand. Personal contact and the perfect presentation are indispensable! Creating a unique stent makes sure that you get the attention and differentiate from others. Make sure that your stent is photogenic, interactive and innovative so the customers start talking about you and your stent: 

Make sure that your stent is appealing for photos which can be share on social media. For example, usage of projection on walls, floors, and ceilings which let the visitors experience a completely different environment for a while.

Match your stent to a photo competition by means of hashtags on social media.

People love to be involved in experiences wherefore you should let them do things. Make sure that your

stent is more than just an information desk, by use of virtual reality, a game, or display your product in creative ways where they also might have the possibility to try it. 

Attract attention and provoke all senses by means of sound, lights, smell, feel, etc.

Would you like to organise a trade fair yourself? For your product launch or other suppliers? In principle the same tips count as mentioned above for your stent, only you have than the opportunity to bring it to an even higher level

and create a diversity of experiences. For example, the lightening can be expended by creation of music show with projections or different areas can be created with all their own audio-visual journey of your product or company.

At the same time your own fair provides a good opportunity to invite your employees and relations the night before for an exclusive premiere.

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ABOUT U What

Internal event

Where

Special location

Target group B2E Goal

motivation and rewarding of employees

Added value Strengthen internal

the

organisation

An internal event is known for its informal atmosphere; the guests should feel welcome and involved. An internal event and its process can be used to start changes within your company. For example, after a reorganisation it is of importance that everyone is accommodated with the right information and let them be involved with the organisation. A surprising and fun way of doing this is by responding to the current festival trend.

Start the preparatory phase with an innovation lab, where teams formed out of different department and/or companies will create an idea for an aspect of the festival together. All those ideas will be pitched and the

management together with other employees will vote for the best idea, which will be executed during the event. Using the innovation lab, engagement and interests will be awaken. After all, it is all about solidarity. Next to the idea of the employees more facilities and activities are present, based on the theme ‘ABOUT U’: 

A big panel in the centre of the field, where a cartoonist will display remarks, ideas, points of attention and fun facts of the company in a story by means of drawing a cartoon strip. The cartoonist can also be involved on forehand with the brainstorms and pitches, so he has talking points and ideas for during the event.

A unique, fun, inspiring background for a funny sketch of yourself or with co-workers.

Food trucks: invest in activities rather than catering wherefore food trucks are the perfect solution. A

diversity of trucks will form a nice décor and it provides a big diversity on food and drinks, in short: something for everyone. 

Promote activity and liveliness by means of actors, interactive hostesses with snacks and drinks, and a mobile band/DJ/singers/etc.

Create diverse cosy areas where people can sit and chat, like campfires, lounge-area’s with Fatboys and hammocks

83


MEET & LEARN What

Congress

Where

Unique location

Target group B2B Goal

Transfer

knowledge

Added value Improve the expert status, image.

A congress is about the transfer of knowledge to others and strengthen the expert status. Besides the speakers, also the location, production and catering are of high importance. Though, congresses are often associated with boring and traditional and due to the compliance agreements it is important to change that. The communication on forehand is very important to attract as much visitors as possible in order to make your event a success. By means of creating a so called urgency and curiosity, people would like to be present. Nevertheless, it is of importance that it is not too long and interaction takes place. This can be reached via: 

A compiled day’s chairmen who connects the show, asks critical and unexpected questions and all in a humorous way.

Create a varied program with education and fun: inspiring speaker with entertainment like a band, actors, etc. Also make use of hall changes.

Make use of an event app to strengthen the interaction: people can vote during speeches and it provides the visitors the possibility to connect with each other.

Facilitate the possibility for visitors to network and meet each other, for example by creating seating areas which can be used during diverse moments in the program.

Finish your event with a reception, a humoristic summary of the day or an award show where a stage for some guests will be created to put them in the spotlight.

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AN EXPERIENCES IS SPECIAL, YOU MAKE IT UNIQUE What

Relation event

Where

Diverse events

Target group B2B Goal

Strengthen

internal and

external relations Added value Strenght the image

As a company you are always busy with maintaining relationships. You are busy with provoking (potential) clients in order to impress them and connect them to your company. Joining an existing event like ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament or CHIO, is a good way to thank your relations in a unique and informal way and bring them in contact with each other. However, nothing can be changed on the event itself wherefore it is of importance to promote your company in other different ways. Think of:   

An own event brochure

Exclusive transport to the location, for example a horse carriage which brings you to CHIO

Live report by a reporter. The reporter will do a live report during the activity in a humoristic way: he asks critical questions, start discussions and create footage, which can be send to the guests the day after as a follow-up. At the same time he can also do live updates for your social media channels.

A led-screen. Come up with an interactive game whereby the event as well as the visitors are actively involved. The led-screen will provide the live statistics and statutes.

Besides join an existing event, you can also chose to respond to the concept of an event. Think of the International Film Festival Rotterdam, which provides a unique opportunity to invite your clients during this period on a unique location in Rotterdam to show there your company’s movie: relations and stories from the past till now.

You cash in on the concept and its acquaintance of the event. This can also be used on social media by taking up the communication of the event. Another interesting event in Rotterdam is the World Harbour Days, rent your own boat or location next to the water and create your own event with an amazing view and atmosphere.

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LONG TERM IMPLEMENTATIONS Quality mark At the moment there is not a leading quality mark for event agencies within the Netherlands yet. However, it could be of high value for corporate enterprises for their future events, as a good and reliable quality mark

is automatically associated with trustworthy. It is also a way to select a reliable event agency, since at the moment there are many organizations which present themselves as an event agency but they do not offer

services needed for the corporate enterprises. Therefore, the interviewed companies enquire within their network first for a suitable event agency, since there is not one central data base with qualified event agencies.

Currently, two organizations, IDEA and CLC Vecta, are setting up a quality mark for event agencies. Even though they have the same goal, they have different qualifications within their audit.

The audit IDEA

CLC Vecta

3 years of entrepreneurship in a branch related

Size of the company is of no importance

environment or 1 year of entrepreneurship after at least 2 years as a manager with another event bureau

Gross income minimum of â‚Ź75.000,- and a maximum of

Professionals and companies organising, accommodating

â‚Ź200.000,-

and facilitating of fairs, congresses, incentives, events

A minimum of 5 clients

Having a valid and covering liability insurance policy

and entertainment

Having a valid and covering liability insurance policy Possibility to offer the IDEA event insurance to clients

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Benefits and costs IDEA

CLC Vecta

IDEA branch quality mark

CLC Vecta quality label

Possibility to visit meetings

15 – 20 CLC Vecta knowledge and network events

Knowledge- and network platform

Whitepapers and help due to (new) regulations

Education program

Membership of MKB Nederland

Advocacy through active lobby

Own online company page

Having a valid and covering liability insurance policy

Possibility for publishing vacancies and news on your company

Possibility to offer the IDEA event insurance to clients

Possibility to offer the CLC Vecta event insurance to clients

Costs for a small agency €1175,-

Access to a broad range of fairs, events and knowledge sessions of members and partners

Entry fee of €500,-

Costs for a one-man business is €560,-

Costs of the audit €250,-

Optional costs for license CLC Vecta event insurance €300,-

International alliances

Focused on the Dutch market

Conclusions

Both organisations are known with the branch, but do not add enough value for investment at the moment. The audit of CLC Vecta is very simple and therefore everyone involved in the field of events can be a member

wherefore you can ask yourself what is worth the quality mark than? IDEA on the other hand has very strict

screening, but are not known by the corporate enterprises as a quality mark yet. Therefore, there is no added value for event agencies at the moment, weighing the costs with the benefits. However, IDEA has potential to get a strong quality mark because of their international alliances and is an important organization for VKOZ to keep track on their future developments.

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Networking

Network organisation - MKB Rotterdam Rijnmond

A membership of MKB Rotterdam Rijnmond costs €325, - per year but includes different events, workshops, and opportunities. They have a diverse range of events; from small to big and from serious to fun, but all easy approachable. All entrepreneurs and companies have the mentality of Rotterdam, everything straight to the point. Besides offline there is also an online network community. A personal profile can be made with

effective terms for the search engines. The online community exists for just one year and will be promoted soon within the range of members from MKB.

Ambassador

MKB Rotterdam contains of 30 ambassadors who maintain contact with 30 member of the society each. By

this inner and closer circles are created which leads to even stronger cooperation’s and network. In order to become an ambassador you need to be an active member. You will get your own personal badge, your own

events and are allowed to attend special ‘partner’ meetings, which are on a higher level and with more influence.

Partners

A partner pays around €3000,-. When you are a member you will become a preferred supplier, you are

stronger represented by means of marketing communication; visible on invitations, magazines, website, etc. When you become a partner you will get an introduction page in the magazine and at the next meeting you will be officially welcomed and introduced on stage with an official press release. There is also the possibility

to be part of the platform ledenvoordeel.nl wherefore a special proposition can be thought of as a special offer for the members of MKB Rotterdam.

Firstly it is recommended to become a ‘normal’ member of MKB Rotterdam Rijnmond in order to find out in

a year if it fits VKOZ. In the past some other network events were visited, which did not fit the culture of VKOZ and therefore was decided to not sign up for a membership. Within the trial period of one year can be

figured out if there are more opportunities for VKOZ as Jack Kriek, the sales manager, pointed out that some knowledge and experience on events is wanted. Printed matter In this digitalizing world where making contact with others worldwide is very easy, it is important to stand out in the crowd. Next to that personal contact is highly valued rather than mass media, which can provide

some opportunities for printed matters such as a brochure or sending a card instead of an e-mail which disappears in the jungle of mails. The marketing budgets are focussing more and more on online wherefore this could provide a good opportunity for differentiation.

Brochure

A brochure is a good opportunity to have on paper what your qualities are and what you can do for the other, it is tactile and tangible without needing an internet connection.

Postcard

Sending a message after the first meeting or for a special occasion can be done easily via an online platform, but due to the personalization trend and the value of VKOZ for a personal approach sending a written postcard can improve the image of VKOZ as well as it stands out.

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89


Partnerships

The digitalization and increased use of big data makes it easy these days to find each other. This provides

the basis for the shared economy we live in now. Enterprises start creating collaborations for exchange of knowledge, expertise and network. Also for VKOZ creating partnerships will have lots of benefits, such as expending its corporate network within Rotterdam, strengthen weaknesses like direct sales and providing

to opportunity for creating a physical product to show. Due to the diverse benefits of a partnership two different types of partners are categorized: partners with additional favour and network and partners with a physical and concrete product. Nevertheless for all partners it is important to have the same norms and values, target group, goal and a two-sided idea of the partnership.

Partners with additional favour and network

In order to expend the network of VKOZ further in Rotterdam it is good to select partners which have a broad

network and knowledge. In order to think out of the box and create awareness in other branches reciprocity is very important. The difference in branch and industry determine the think- and work approach of a person. Here fore, you can transfer each other’s knowledge and expertise in order to learn from each other. A good

partner can be Eric van der Velden of De Filmmakelaar. Eric is one of the thirty ambassadors of MKB Rotterdam Rijnmond and has lots of experience in the field of sales. Because of this he created a very broad network amongst enterprises in Rotterdam. Besides, his valuable network his knowledge on direct sales can

be very meaningful for VKOZ. Since the passion of Marjolein is on marketing communication, which is not for Eric, they can help each other by sharing ideas and experiences.

Another possible partner can be Richard de Jong of Datamatch. Datamatch is a company focussed on gathering big data for marketing purposes, for all branches but mostly restaurants, hotels and retail.

However, lately some request come for event registration. Due to the fact that he has hardly none experience and knowledge VKOZ could help him with advice and he can give the leads to VKOZ. Of course both parties can strengthen each other’s network.

Partners with physical products

Since VKOZ offers services and no concrete products it is not possible to show the product and capabilities in real life to (potential) clients. Therefore it is recommended to find a partner with a physical product in the same industry, but a different branch so a problem discovered with the partner’s product and experienced

by all event managers can be brought under attention in a creative matter. When the attention is gathered it provides the opportunity for the partner to explain his businesses and get rid of the vagueness as well as

it is an opportunity for VKOZ to show their creativity and strategic thinking with a tangible product. Possibly it will be a partner in the audio-visual or event decoration branch. The idea is to create a stent together on a trade fair to get attention of the corporate enterprises in such way they are triggered, a discussion started and the problem solved.

Rules of conduct

For all partnerships some rules of conduct are needed to be created in order to have clarity and avoiding

confusion. Starting with the common goal, which can be translated into a shared marketing communication plan. Next to that the norms, values, vision and way of communication to the world are defined. It is

important to have in line how you communicate about each other to others, such as being mentioned on the website, a possible press release and presentation to the network. 90


CRITERIA Similarity in norms and values

Personal approach · transparent · passionate · strategic thinking

No competitor but a supplement Same goals and target group Cross-pollination

Different background/branch which influences the way of thinking

Reciprocity

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Intern online marketing and social media Education:

Third year HBO

Duration:

5 to 6 months

From:

Hours per week:

August / September onwards 24 hours (3 days per week)

About the internship:

An intern of VKOZ gets lots of freedom for creativity and initiative. You will be responsible for the marketing communication and social media. Your main focus will be on managing the content calendar by writing new

content for publications and maintaining the social platforms in order to build strong collaborations with influencers on platforms such as Instagram. The goal of your tasks is to increase the brand awareness of VKOZ. Next to that you keep track of trends, competitors and other brands and how they do their profiling and you think along with new concepts and marketing communication options. Requirements  

Following a HBO study in for example, communication You have affinity with the event industry

You are a self-starter

Good skills in writing

Creative mind

Photoshop skills are a pre

92


Roles and responsibility From June onwards, the implementations will be implemented. Firstly, this responsibility will be in hands of Marjolein herself. Since the basis for the marketing communication is set into action now, it is important to keep on track and bring it to a next level by being actively busy on all platforms

with the content calendar as a guiding tool. Due to the fact that not much space within the agenda

of Marjolein is left, I recommend to apply for a communication intern for three days a week who will have the focus on the marketing communication. The job title should be as followed: Online marketing and social media Intern. Next to the personal responsible for the publications and content it would be nice if some unique

and strong visuals are created out of name of VKOZ. Also one look-and-feel for everything send and created out of name of VKOZ such as flyers, banners, tenders, project plans, etc. would increase the recognisability. Since VKOZ is always open for new ideas, believes in the value of renewing and

wants to provide place for all kinds of talent, this opportunity will be attractive and provide place for students and young professionals to expand their portfolio. In order to bring the vacancy under attention a small social media campaign can be set up as well as schools can be reached out to.

93


BUDGET

€0

€325

€960

PUBLICITY

NETWORK

SOCIAL

The budgets calculated are based on half a year, due to the planned evaluation at the end of December. After the evaluations changes can be made, especially on the short term implementations wherefore the budget gets

irrelevant. Next to that memberships for one year such as MKB Rotterdam Rijnmond are paid at once and are therefore calculated with the whole amount. Short term implementations In general, the short term implementations themselves are for free. However, the decision is made for quality over quantity wherefore a communication intern who focusses on everything communicated and a copywriter for the

press release for free publicity are recommended. Also a budget of €60,00 is available for boosting advertisements on Facebook. This means a budget of €10,00 per months, which is based on the content strategy in which one main topic is chosen per month. After the evaluation it can be decided to increase the budget when it is a success, decrease the budget or to continue. Long term implementations

The long term implementations cover most of total costs. Starting with the membership of MKB Rotterdam

Rijnmond. After attending a few events on invitation of one of the ambassadors of the organisation an impression of the value and format was created. The atmosphere was relaxed, informal and everybody was willing to help each

other. This was also one of the results of the conducted research as all companies interviewed, start their search within their network. Next to that there are the printed matters such as the postcard and the brochure and finally

the partnerships. As already discussed before there are two types of partners: for their network and for their physical product. The first group is based on the shared economy we are in right now as the network, knowledge

and expertise will be exchanged. The other partner provides the opportunity for VKOZ to show what it is capable of by means of concept which can be experienced real-life at a fair. The costs for the stent, decoration and merchandise are for both parties and are therefore split in two.

94


SHORT TERM

Quality mark

Website Adjustments by web designer

€195,00

3h á €65,00 p/h

Social Media Personnel; intern

LONG TERM

€900,00

3 days p/w for 6months á

Not applicable

MKB Rotterdam Rijnmond Membership for 1 year

€325,00

€150,00 p/m

Platforms

€0,00

Optional; boosting adverts

€60,00

€10,00 p/m

Advertisements Personnel; copywriter

€225,00

3h á €75,00 p/h

Platform

€0,00

Printed matter Brochure 100 pieces

€100,00

Postcards 75 pieces

€30,00

Free publicity

Partnerships Partners; network

€0,00

Shared economy; exchange

Partners; physical products Fair;

€697,50 €447,50

EventSummit á €895,00

Decoration & Merchandise

€250,00

á €500,00

TOTAL: €2532,50 95excl. tax


JULY 2018

EVALUATION INBETWEEN

Keep track on developments, only in case of alarming results take action

START WITH IMPLEMTATIONS

OKTOBER 2018

Google · social media · website

DECEMBER 2018

HALFWAY EVALUATION

Bend moment for small changes in the marketing communication plan Google · social media · website

EVALUATION MKB ROTTERDAM

Evaluate the last year and the value of the membership in order to decide to continue, take it to a next level or step out.

APRIL 2019

MKB Rotterdam Rijnmond

JUNE 2019

YEARLY EVALUATION - END

Measurements for the final conclusion in order to create a plan and content agenda for next year. Also look into the developments of quality mark by IDEA Google · social media · website · printed matters · IDEA

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EVALUATION From July onwards is stared with the implementations and the content calendar. Even though, most recommendations are for at least one year it is important to keep track on the efficiency. Evaluation can take

place during or afterwards. The results will be used for the beginning of an improved marketing communication plan for the next year in order to increase the efficiency. The efficiency is based on the set goals like expanding

the range of social media by more users and leads. The online channels will be evaluated after every half a year, in order to see if another approach might be needed or the budget should be spend differently. The big

implementations such as the membership of MKB Rotterdam will be evaluated one month before the end, so it can be decided on time to step out or continue and maybe even look for the option to become an ambassador or partner. Due to different channels there are different methods for measurements. However, in the beginning of July when the implementations started a baseline measurement should be conducted in order to be able to compare the results after implementation.

MEASUREMENTS LINKEDIN

FACEBOOK

INSTAGRAM

LinkedIn Analytics

Facebook analytics

Instagram Insights

‘Create more followers and visitors’ 

Visitors

Updates

Follower

‘Expand range of followers and reaches’

‘Create a successful account for inspiration’

Page views

Impressions

Reach

Reach

Track of likes and

Website clicks

shares

Profile views

followers

TWITTER

WEBSITE

EXTRA

Twitter analytics

Vevida (host)

Google analytics – clicktroughs

‘’Increase the engagements”

‘Good website performance’

Impressions

Where come from

Engagements

interaction

Google

and effective SEO's MKB Rotterdam Rijnmond

Own experience of expanding network Brochure & postcards

Feedback of enterprises and own observations

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98


CRITICAL REFLECTION

99


Graduating, the end of my study. A study which supported my interest in the field of leisure by means of knowledge

and theories and challenged me learn the English language. Over the years I have developed English, gain experience in the field of leisure and gained more knowledge wherefore I was able to choose a graduation

assignment which fits my interest specifically. While writing the proposal I had already some ideas about the design of my research, mainly because this research is linked to my ambitions, corporate events and the field I wanted to

gain more insight in, marketing. I wanted to get into contact with companies which organise event already of have it in their future plans as well as some branch experts to look on the topic on different perspectives. However, I underestimated the effort and time it costs to find companies willing to conduct an interview with you. Already in

the first week I figured out that it took a lot of time to find out who was responsible for the events within the company and a lot ‘no’s were sold, as they were mainly to busy. Therefore I knew I needed to change my approach of direct contact into something else.

Shared building, fifteen companies in different branches

During the graduation assignment I worked at the office of VKOZ, which is located in a shared office building with fourteen other companies. VKOZ provides flex offices for her freelancers, branch experts and interns. The reason

for this because VKOZ believes in the power of co-creation and collaboration and we can all learn from each other, what really was the case for me during my graduation. With all a different background and expertise I got feedback

and opinions out of different perspectives what was very meaningful for my work as well as expanding general knowledge. When I noticed the approach for searching companies for my interviews was not that efficient I started

involving my research into the informal conversations I had with some of them as well as with people from the other companies. This approach got me further as I created a bond with two people what resulted in their

willingness to help me. One already got big contacts at the event department of Robeco and the other turned to be

one of the ambassadors of MKB Rotterdam and invited me over to two of their meeting so I could get into contact with companies in an informal way first. This was a turning point in my research, but also had an influence on my

knowledge of marketing. I got into contact with lots of different people and had interesting conversations about their jobs, some interesting for my interviews and willing to help, other helped with some expertise and knowledge on marketing.

Marketing: not only for the communication plan

Further in the process I got more aware of the importance of marketing communication, not only for strengthen your brand but also for events themselves. You can organize the most amazing events, but if nobody knows about

it they will not show up and the event will not be the success it could be. Even though, I had some basic knowledge I noticed during the process my knowledge specifically on increasing brand awareness and online marketing was

not enough yet. Wherefore, I had to schedule extra time to read more studies, articles and theories to get an even better understanding. Not only for my graduation assignment, but also for my personal development as a marketer

for the future. Even though I have developed myself as a marketer I would like to gain even more experiences, wherefore I am scheduling meetings with

100


Getting to know your target group One big and important aspect for creating a marketing communication plan is to understand your target group.

Even though I did knew already that it was important, it got confirmed again. Nevertheless, I have learned that it is sometimes hard to gather the information via the official methods such as surveys and interviews. I can imagine that especially looking out of the perspective of a company it can be difficult to find respondents for an interview.

As a students you have sometimes the benefit that they feel with you as they were a student themselves once too. So really need have a strong and unique research to convince them, because every entrepreneur is busy with what

is in it for me? Therefore I was paying attention to other methods outside the standard curriculum of school and I noticed that during informal conversations at for example a network event I could get information out of the stories they tell me as norms and values are not only reflected on events but everything they do. ACTIVE, the Imagineering principle

The main goal of my research was to strengthen the brand around VKOZ in the market corporate enterprises in

Rotterdam (Appreciative). During my graduation co-creation was the leading principle. In the beginning since I

needed to bond with others in order to find interviewee’s as they could help me themselves or knew someone who could help me, but also in a later stage since I have gained an insight into marketing communication and the needs

and wants of corporate enterprises wherefore I could help advising my boss, but also other companies with the information gathered. Also throughout the graduation period I have worked together with Marjolein van Rosmalen in order to create the best possible result.

Since Marjolein van Rosmalen and therefore VKOZ wants to grow from a freelancer to an entrepreneur, more brand awareness amongst corporate enterprises is needed to be created. The conclusions and recommendations on the

needs and wants of those enterprises provided new insights. These insight are the basis for the new marketing

communication plan which will support the transition VKOZ wants to undergo. These insight transform the approach of VKOZ into corporate based. For writing the conclusions and recommendations the needs and wants of corporate enterprises based on their values are combined with the values and core competencies of Marjolein and

VKOZ in order to create a plan which fit both parties. In order to find these values the questions on the item-list were value-based.

Even though the two aspects of the principle left, imaginative and experience focused are less presented due to the focus on norms and values during the research, they did came to light. The implementations are written with

creativity in mind, one more than the other, in order to trigger and inspire the enterprises in such way they will

remember VKOZ. For example, the partnership with a company with a concrete product such as audio-visual, in order to create an innovative and inspiring stent to trigger the visitor by means of an unexpected and outstanding experience which appeals to one of their struggles as an event manager.

101


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ASSESS

110


SSMENT

111


Graduation assignment Leisure Management NHTV 2017-2018 Assessment and feedback form for client/company supervisor

Name student:

Amy Pieterse

ID-code student:

131391

Name of client company:

VKOZ

Name of company supervisor:

Marjolein van Rosmalen

Start and end date of graduation:

19 February – 15 June

Date of appraisal interview 1:

24 April 2018

A. Interim assessment graduation assignment after 9 weeks: Based on what was agreed by student and client, the student meets the requirements:

Not (yet) applicable

Above expectations

satisfactorily

To a certain extent

Not at all

1

Graduation assignment Extent to what extent the client’s problem has been solved

X

Approach assignment suits client’s problem

X

Methods chosen support solution of client’s problem

X

Results research component provides new information

X

Ideas and advice/recommendations are realistic

X

Ideas and advice/recommendations are innovative

X

Ideas and advice/recommendations are implementable

X

Report/ presentation

X

Additional information (please indicate one aspect that is good and one that should be improved) : Amy has a clear project plan/planning and informs regularly about the process. She knows the background and the current organisation of VKOZ very well. Amy works hard, meticulously and structured, is motivated and keeps agreements.

Improvement NHTV: because of the unclear guidelines of the graduation assignment, Amy has to spend more time on the procedures of NHTV (instead of working on the assignment for VKOZ).

112


B. Interim assessment professional product after 9 weeks: Based on what was agreed by student and client, the student meets the requirements:

Working independence

X

Critical attitude

X

Professional attitude

X

Creation of (internal) support

X

Contact between colleagues

X

Ability to fit in (the corporate culture)

X

Availability/ flexibility

X

Not (yet) applicable

Above expectations

satisfactorily

To a certain extent

Not at all

2

Additional information (please indicate one aspect that is good and one that should be improved) : Amy represents VKOZ very well, thinks along and is creative. In addition, she is reliable and a pleasant employee. Improvement: Amy has a lot of talent and skills, which she could have more confidence in.

Above expectations

satisfactorily

To a certain extent

Not at all

3

Personal objectives Students shows his/her development on the following 3 to 5 personal goals1: 1.Building up confidence as a young professional

X

2.Paying attention of work - life balance

X

3.Improving networking skills

X

Additional information (please indicate one aspect that is good and one that should be improved):

Completed after 9 weeks by :Name: Marjolein van Rosmalen

Signature:

Date: 24 April 2018

113


Graduation assignment Leisure Management NHTV 2017-2018 Assessment and feedback form for client/company supervisor

Name student:

Amy Pieterse

ID-code student:

131391

Name of client company:

VKOZ

Name of company supervisor:

Marjolein van Rosmalen

Start and end date of graduation:

19 February – 15 June

Date of appraisal interview 1:

5

June 2018

A. Interim assessment graduation assignment after 18 weeks: Not (yet) applicable

satisfactorily

To a certain extentt

Not at all

1

Above expectations

Based on what was agreed by student and client, the student meets the requirements:

Graduation assignment Extent to what extent the client’s problem has been solved

X

Approach assignment suits client’s problem

X

Methods chosen support solution of client’s problem

X

Results research component provides new information

X

Ideas and advice/recommendations are realistic

X

Ideas and advice/recommendations are innovative

X

Ideas and advice/recommendations are implementable

X

Report/ presentation

X

Additional information (please indicate one aspect that is good and one that should be improved) : In a short time Amy has acquired (specialized) knowledge of VKOZ, the event industry and marketing & communication. Which is well translated in her graduation assignment, where she makes connections and draws conclusions. Including an extended and practical implementation plan for VKOZ. Furthermore Amy has a good eye for (graphic) design and a creative (and curious) mind, which makes a great sparring partner and an added value for VKOZ.

114


B. Interim assessment professional product after 18 weeks: Based on what was agreed by student and client, the student meets the requirements:

Working independence

X

Critical attitude

X

Professional attitude

X

Creation of (internal) support

X

Contact between colleagues

X

Ability to fit in (the corporate culture)

X

Availability/ flexibility

X

Not (yet) applicable

Above expectations

satisfactorily

To a certain extentt

Not at all

2

Additional information (please indicate one aspect that is good and one that should be improved) : Amy has enthusiastically embraced and professionally represented VKOZ. She is very dedicated and she has a lot of perseverance. Her self-confidence has grown, which had a positive effect on showing her full potential. She also had to juggle the guidelines of NHTV on the one hand and the practical matters and wishes of VKOZ on the other hand, which proved flexibility and problem solving.

Above expectations

satisfactorily

To a certain extentt

Not at all

3

Personal objectives Students shows his/her development on the following 3 to 5 personal goals2: 1.Building up confidence as a young professional

X

2.Paying attention of work - life balance

X

3.Improving networking skills

X

Additional information (please indicate one aspect that is good and one that should be improved) :

Amy has developed herself further into a young professional. She represented VKOZ and herself at different network events, fairs, and the office and business relations of VKOZ. Amy takes pride in her work and likes to deliver quality. It is a challenge not to be too much of a perfectionist, but she can use her excellent time management skills to balance work and life.

Completed after 18 weeks by: Name: Marjolein van Rosmalen

Signature:

Date: 5 June 2018

115


116

Graduation Assignment Amy Pieterse  

This research is conducted to provide VKOZ with more insight into VKOZ as a brand, core competencies and the needs and wants of corporate en...

Graduation Assignment Amy Pieterse  

This research is conducted to provide VKOZ with more insight into VKOZ as a brand, core competencies and the needs and wants of corporate en...

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