Anil Aggarwal Brings Deep Market Knowledge to Another Growing Event

August 18th, 2017 No comments

FollowFridayDuring the last several years, many of my colleagues in the business of producing events have been pessimistic, at best, about the prospects for large new trade shows. Anil Aggarwal is one who has proved them wrong. Anil has leveraged his knowledge of the payments industry and his deep understanding of the commercial trade show business to create and sell two major trade shows, the Prepaid Card Expo, and Money20/20. Now he’s building another empire, Shoptalk, an event that charts the current disruption of the retail and ecommerce markets. Given Anil’s deep understanding of this market, you can expect this conference to deliver on its promised 7500 attendees, this coming spring.

Categories: Follow Friday Tags:

Keep an Eye on Periscope and Other Participant-Driven On-Site Videocasting Tools

August 5th, 2015 No comments

PeriscopeI enjoyed this front-line review on the application of Periscope employed as a real-time marketing tool at an established trade show event. Periscope enables live webcasting from your smart phone. This app, now owned by Twitter, launched in March and they’ve just announced that they’ve signed up over 10 million Periscope accounts. Nipping at the heels of Periscope is Meerkat, which created a lot of buzz at South by Southwest this year. B2B events producers would be advised to keep an eye on these tools that put the power of “presence” into the hands of your clients.

Sally Shankland, Moving On After a Long Journey from MFP

May 29th, 2015 No comments

FollowFridayMany of us who joined Miller Freeman Publications in the late 80′s (Fun fact: there was one fax machine for the entire company) have fond memories of working there. It was like attending grad school for business media, except they paid you. It was a smallish company and you knew everybody and they were open to acquisitions, startups, or any crazy idea you could come up with. One of those acquisitions was Healthcare Media, and National Sales Manager Sally Shankland. Healthcare Media was alway a bit more “professional” than the rest of MFP. Sally exemplified this professionalism and rose through the ranks as planet MFP was slowly sucked into black hole UBM. She joined CMP Healthcare Media in 1996. She moved to UBM in 2007 as CEO of UBM Medica and was named CEO of UBM Connect in 2012. She has also served as Read more…

Categories: Follow Friday Tags:

Important Insight on Presence From a Talking Head

August 20th, 2013 No comments

ByrneDDavid Byrne is a very talented musician who is also thoughtful, and well-spoken. I’ve been reading his Bicycle Diaries, a sprawling autobiographical travelogue loosely tied together by his impressions from bicycling dozens of cities around the world. In the middle of the book, there’s an interesting aside on the importance of “presence” in a digital world: “Paradoxically, as it does get easier and easier to marshal all sorts of services from our phones or laptops and access limitless information, the interest and demand for the stuff that can’t be digitized becomes greater: live performances, face-to-face gatherings, interactions, experiences, Read more…

Categories: Intermediation Tags:

Digital Facility Certification Program: Pilot Program Brings Real-World Success

July 13th, 2013 No comments

MTCCFor hybrid events to take off, common business models and standards are needed. The organization that is leading the charge for common standards the Virtual Edge Institute, fronted by events industry veteran Michael Doyle. Their Digital Event Center certification program, which provides meeting facilities with a uniform readiness review of their readiness review of their infrastructure, employees and partner ecosystem. It’s a good sign for this program that the Metro Toronto Convention Centre (MTCC) has achieved this certification, and has since executed a hybrid event. The event was Dx3, Canada’s largest Read more…

A Working Hybrid Model: To Add Revenue, Just Add Streams

June 4th, 2013 No comments

Hybrid Events are the future, and we’re always happy to hear about business models that work. So we were pleased to stumble on this story about ARRS, a medical imaging society, and Keri Sperry, their Senior Director of Education. They’ve been producing digital events since 2011, and have been adding hybrid revenue streams to a successful live association event. They started by livestreaming just some workshops that were held in conjunction with their annual meeting. Livestream attendance grew from 42 to over 300 in 2012 (on top of over 900 in-person attendees). The virtual registration fee to attend workshops is higher than for physical attendance, but on-site attendees also have to pay for annual meeting registration. So they added another Read more…

Categories: New Models, Tech Tuesday Tags:

Meetings-Oriented Hackathon: Great Move for the Industry

February 26th, 2013 1 comment

Great work by The Chicago Area Chapter of Meeting Professionals International for organizing the first ever (as far as I can tell) hackathon for meeting apps, on Feb 15. The event was held in conjunction with its third annual MPI TechCon, a one-day meetings technology conference. Fifty-eight software developers and designers took part. The products that came out of the hackathon sound great: A touch-screen game for trade show booths that allows suppliers to gather e-mail information and attendees to win prizes; a tool that helps planners communicate with the back of the house, using a voice-to-text service that can translate the message into another language; an app that lets you see the business cards of people who are Read more…

Alan Meckler, Indefatigable Entrepreneur, Event Impresario, and Web Shaper

March 16th, 2012 2 comments

Before there was “The Internet,” there was Alan Meckler, Mecklermedia and Internet World. This trade show and publishing empire enveloped and exploded with the dot-com hysteria that consumed almost everything in the late 90′s. In one of history’s shrewdest examples of “getting out while the getting is good,” $274 million of Penton Media money gave Alan Meckler the fuel he needed to continue playing king-maker to this very day. In the same time period, Penton has gone from new media sweetheart to the of print: bankrupt, downsized, merged, and again, and again. I was privileged to see an Internet World P&L in 1999, and the bottom line was staggering. If the dot-com era had lasted 3 more years, the world would be calling Read more…

A Brief Rant. Virtual Events on Facebook and LinkedIn: Where Are the Apps?

March 6th, 2012 No comments

I call it the Internet Probability Principle: If I can think of something that should exist on the Internet, it usually does. I think of it…I Google it…and there it is. This was my experience with efax services, large-file transfer services, online OCR, and my wife. I looked, and there they were. So, why has no one created a decent virtual event application in Facebook and LinkedIn. Has Google seen this gaping void? Is it seeking to fill the void with Google+ Hangouts. My quick search around the web reveals only a couple of freshman developer attempts. I won’t even post links because what I’ve seen is embarrassing. There is nothing that even pretends to be enterprise-grade. This is based on a very quick look around the web, but that’s usually all it takes. Am I missing something? Come on, Internet!

Categories: Tech Tuesday, Technology Tags:

Thanks for Putting All the Meeting Apps in One Place

September 20th, 2011 No comments

Someone did a smart thing and placed every app that could be of use to a meeting planner on a portal called, simply enough, During my quick visit, I saw hundreds of apps listed, and some of the more popular apps are actually reviewed by meeting planners. Apps are organized in categories that are relevant to meeting professionals, like Air Travel, Meeting Management, Conferences, etc. You can also search for apps by platform, including Android, Blackberry, and iPhone. By joining their “App Alert,” you can be notified when new apps are posted. The site was created by Kirsten Strand, of Invenia Incentives in Vancouver, BC. The site is a very smart promotion for their services, as their offerings are subtlety integrated into the fabric of the site. Looking to develop your own app? Invenia can help. The commercial interruptions are minimal, and I didn’t mind, because the content is so great. Here’s the ultimate compliment: I’m wondering why I didn’t think of this.