|CHICAGO- January, 7, 1999 -- "We produce the visual metaphor
at the heart of the business agenda," says Sally Schwartz, Chicago event
Although slick messages are bombarding executives and consumers from every direction, the fine art of business entertaining at Chicago's Paint Me a Party Productions, Inc. has retained the unique qualities of graciousness and personality, producing executive events both domestically and around the world.
Sally Schwartz, a veteran of the event and meeting planning industry, observes that business and social events can break through media clutter with memorable experiences based upon vivid visual elements.
Over the years, her company, Paint Me a Party Productions Inc., has developed a client list to include a who's who of business with such companies as Andersen Consulting, Hewlett-Packard, Eastman-Kodak, Jim Beam, Pfizer, Hallmark and Kirkland Ellis.
"Our most unique and successful events are those where we literally immerse the guests in an environment which seduces them, opens them up to being `sold' and hits them right in their hearts where emotions live--with a combination of senses, memories, and spirit," says Schwartz, president and creative director. "Corporate America used to be stuffier. Now companies want to create real experiences. Time and money are always at a premium and people have so many stimuli vying for their attention. If you can't cut through the clutter, forget about it."
Schwartz observes that, "People want to be connected, not just to information,
but to one another. They seek out experiences. Business entertainment had
better be challenging and offer fresh stimulation for guests." Today, she
says, companies require sophisticated
Many event planners struggle with the new availability of resources, previously available only in their little black books. From lighting specialists to party-oriented florists, potential clients locate services more easily from telephone books, the Internet and other directories. The missing element?
"Creativity! " says Schwartz. According to a recent industry survey published by Sales Marketing Management Magazine, 92% of sales and marketing professionals agree that creativity, more than any other factor will be critical to business success in the next century.
Years ago, when Schwartz was cutting her "marketing" teeth at an ad agency, she saw potential for specialization in sales and marketing-oriented event production and management. With a ream of letterhead and a financial jump-start from her parents, Schwartz was armed with the basics to get her fledgling business off-and-running.
"My parents sprang for start-up funds since they had planned to pay
law or biz- school tuition, and I was more likely to find success, and
maybe a nice husband, via this route," says Schwartz. "Our whimsical name,
Paint Me A Party, was chosen because it captures the
Recent masterpiece events have included creating the concept and "set" for the Anti-Defamation League's Crystal Globe Award Presentation to Italian filmmaker Roberto Benigni, saluting his illumination of the human condition in his recent film "Life is Beautiful".
"When guests entered the ballroom that evening, they gasped at the beauty
of the room, which was designed to resemble an elegant dinner scene in
the film," said Schwartz. "Elaborate lighting illuminated the attendees
and included them as an important part of
"We recently orchestrated an executive visit to the Jim Beam Brands Distillery in Kentucky for top Turkish food and wine journalists. The guests learned about new `small batch bourbons,' enjoyed a wonderful Southern-style luncheon at the home of Beam's grandson, visited Churchill Downs, site of the Kentucky Derby, and souvenir-shopped for their kids in an American mega-mall," said Schwartz. "They returned home with a unique understanding of the products, company work ethic and the American South that cannot be duplicated by jumping on and off planes or dictated by a travel brochure."
|Also See:||Ritz-Carlton Ranks Above the Rest in J.D. Power and Associates Second Annual Meeting Planner Study for Hotel Industry / July 1998|
|Planning a Dinner Party for Thousands? It's No Problem for ARAMARK at the Houston Astrodome / Sept 1998|