Friday, April 18, 2008

OTC Precog

Precognition – “precog” – is knowledge in advance of an event, especially by extrasensory perception.

I can’t see much further through a brick wall than the next fella. But last night, at the American Marketing Association Houston second annual pre-Offshore Technology Conference networker, I wondered if anyone could see lightning far off on the watery horizon.

Here’s the price of oil holding at US$115 a barrel and attendance at this Mixer was down compared to last year.

This is no fault of its excellent hosts and sponsors: It was a good time at a good venue. However, to justify this post, I ought to be able to find something reasonably profound to say about all this.

What I learned is that every person I spoke with has had a different business experience through the first quarter of this year. Some people have been struggling and this is in a market that feeds off the Energy Sector, which continues its growth. To be clear, no one I met last night had to testify about his or her “obscene profits” before the US Congress – obviously I am hanging with the wrong crowd.

Here’s the deal about OTC .08: One of the world’s largest trade shows, it opens at Reliant Center here on 5 May. It’s the Houston version of the Texas State Fair, Ringling Brothers Circus and a Bob-the-Builder Convention rolled into one huge event, with more than 70,000 “offshore E&P professionals” and more that 2,000 exhibiting companies.

That lightning you see on the horizon? I sense that’s the sparking of opportunity, precognition of fresh business for marketers. The truth is out there. Get your rear ends down to Reliant Center when the OTC doors open.

All the official OTC hotels are sold out, but if you’re serious, you can stay here with us. And thanks to the hosts and sponsors for last night’s get-together. (The AMA’s Sherri Scott caught me with my enthusiasm showing…again. I have got to be careful around that woman!) Have a great weekend.

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