Con-Tech’s return to the DEF Forum North America this year was met with great enthusiasm and success. We are thankful to all the participants and supporters who met with us at this industrious and important show. Meeting new contacts, sharing information about our business and re-connecting with former customers made the ROI for this event well worth it and confirmed the importance of being present, particularly in markets where growth opportunities exist.
Con-Tech Executive Vice President Rob Evans, III has been watching the DEF packaging market with great interest and sees enormous potential for Con-Tech and others in packaging. He spoke with fellow industry leaders at the conference, on the golf course, over meals and shares his success and experience at the 2019 DEF Forum in this Q&A.
Was there a strong turnout for this event?
The 2019 DEF Forum saw an excellent group of industry leaders in attendance, resulting in a great turnout.
Who were the people in the DEF industry represented at the forum?
It was an interesting mix of company owners, managers, purchasing directors, CEOs, and executives in attendance. Taking the time to meet industry leaders, learn their names, shake their hands and listen to them discuss their businesses, needs, and challenges once again proved to be invaluable. These opportunities to connect and provide solutions or suggestions can mean the difference between doing business and changing a company’s success or having no sales leads or ideas on how to move forward in a growing market.
How would someone make a strong connection with other industry leaders at such an event?
Of course, it’s essential to spend time doing some research on the event and those who plan to attend. Check out the list of secured exhibitors and make a list of who to stop and see. If possible, connect with other leaders via social media or email ahead of time and make an appointment to discuss business solutions and share ideas. Be creative and open to different strategies. I enjoy golfing and saw there were opportunities to play with other leaders and made a point of playing golf with a couple of guys from a potential DEF company in Tennessee, Clear Fuel, who we hadn’t done any business with. We had a really nice time on the course and had lots of opportunities to discuss business.
What is the most important takeaway from attending this conference?
The DEF industry is growing at a very fast rate and despite being a very new industry, it is very well established. The need for DEF fluid in diesel engines only became necessary a little over a decade ago, and the development of so many companies moving into this field is pretty impressive.
What was the response to Con-Tech’s presence?
I spoke with a lot of people who weren’t aware that we were supplying DEF products, so it was a great opportunity to help inform a large portion of the industry about what Con-Tech can offer.
What advice would you give to someone new in the industry?
It’s hugely important to take every opportunity possible to meet with people in an industry your company does business in, particularly one which you want to grow. I am beyond pleased with this very informative session; it gave a good overview of the industry and its growth potential. I came home with potential leads and opportunities, met new colleagues and shared our company’s strengths with many people who now want to know more about our business.