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Meet Joe Marzano, Martius Group

By M+E Staff

As a CEO of an event management company and former business executive, Joe Marzano estimates that he’s attended over 1,000 events and meetings all over the world. “But I can count on one hand the good ones,” he says.

This industry insider spent seven years as a CMO, marketing and planning events for top executives. “I got a sense of what worked,” he says. Marzano saw an opportunity to create what he terms “engaging experiences,” and was inspired by a story he had heard about a businessman who extended a personal invitation to the founder of a major retail company to go on a private backwoods fishing trip. That one-week trip resulted in a 25-year business relationship between the two corporate giants. “Invite people out without an agenda and you earn their trust and the right to do more with them,” Marzano says.

As a former culinary college president and accomplished cook raised on a Pennsylvania farm, Marzano looks for ways to bring people together. “Not everyone likes adventure or riding horses, but everyone loves food,” he says. Marzano founded Martius Group in the spring of 2014. He creates culinary events for corporate clients that go far beyond tastings and demonstrations. The company has designed day, weekend or weeklong events for CEO-level coaching and advising. A trip he designed for a corporate group of eight to the Amalfi Coast had attendees learning to make cheese, visiting olive groves and farms, and making pizza in Rome with local experts. “It was a way for this group to come together and share unforgettable experiences,” Marzano says.

Marzano meets with prospective clients in order to design an experience built around what the client wants. “What are you looking for? Do you have relationships with high-net-worth clients that need to be maintained? Are you looking for a strategic solution to keeping employees happy, or are you looking for a reward/recognition program?” he says. Depending on the client’s needs, this Pennsylvania native determines the proper fit. “I’m not looking to organize an afternoon of fun,” he says. Instead, he focuses on a fully baked concept that delivers results. Sounds like a recipe for success.

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