If You Build It, You Must Build Well.

10 Feb 2010, Posted by Jennifer Iannolo in news & buzz

It’s been a rough day. I’ve spent months working with my team on the Sex on a Plate event concept, trying to bring it to life in a way that was compelling, satiating, and generally a blast. All the pieces seemed to fit together nicely, so I decided to try my hand in NYC first. It’s my backyard, I have dear friends at the Roger Smith Hotel, and it seemed feasible to pull this off as a launch to my series of Sex on a Plate events. Ambitiously (perhaps overly so), I thought we could offer a compelling alternative on one of the most Hallmark romantic holidays of them all.

I was mistaken. Even with a crackerjack team, a talented chef and a price of $85 for 7+ exquisite courses with wines and tequila, we couldn’t sell enough tickets, so today we had to cancel the Valentine’s Day event. Interestingly, there are, at this moment, other cities wanting Sex on a Plate, ready to put the pieces in motion.

So what went wrong in NYC? Well, I think it might have been a perfect convergence of not enough lead time to market between Christmas and Valentine’s Day, a non-existent advertising budget, not enough outreach, and too much else going on here that day. A perfect storm of fail.

I’ll consider it my tuition. The next one will be planned much more carefully, with more lead time and a lot more momentum. If you build it, they will come — but only if you build it well.

And so we will begin again. I know the concept is a worthy one, as enough of you have said so — sometimes very loudly! — that I believe you. And you believe in what I’m doing here, which is more important — and why I refuse to let this idea fizzle away. Instead it will be refined, re-mixed and relaunched.

Thank you for being a part of my rollercoaster ride. You make it worthwhile. Stay tuned.