Planning for NFC Lead Retrieval. Not Just Another Stinking Badge.

September 13th, 2011 No comments

Google NFC and what do you get? Lots of info about the Dallas Cowboys. Google “NFC -football” and everything changes: there are 37 million pages of info about Near Field Communication, the specification for simplified wireless transactions coming soon to a smart phone near you. I’m working with the Smart Card Alliance and NFC Forum to launch a big new NFC event next year in San Francisco. Of course the badging system needs to be NFC compatible, and we’re working with an NFC-savvy registration company. What I’m learning is that this technology, if it catches on, could change the economics of registration services at major events. With a “true” NFC badging system, any smartphone becomes a lead retrieval device. That’s great for event planners, right? Imagine everyone at your event, vendors, attendees, and press–scanning each other for networking purposes. If you’re running a registration company, you just had a heart attack, because that eliminates your main source of revenue–lead retrieval devices and services. We had a long discussion with the registration company about how to solve this problem and the answer was “Apps. Maybe.” This will be an interesting project because, if it works out, everything at the conference will be scannable: people, booths, technology demos, posters, food service stations, and who knows what else. I’ll keep you updated.

Sonic Foundry Offers Strategic Planning Tools for Hybrid Events

August 31st, 2011 No comments

Sonic Foundry has long been a webcasting and teleconferencing thought leader, with an institutional understanding of the benefits of hybrid and blended events. For event planners it’s well worth your time to take a trip around their web site, which includes a number of uselful webcasts, whitepapers and case studies. A couple of great webcasts are available for free in their library: Try Strategic Planning for a Successful Hybrid Event which is presented by Victoria Fanning who is the Director of Hybrid and Online Meetings at EDUCAUSE. They’ve got a great slate of hybrid events–way ahead of the curve. If you’re interested in a user-driven webinar model (either as a participant or as a producer) try Hybrid Events: Choose Your Own Adventure. This is a deep dive, with 18 separate potential paths to follow. I see a lot of poorly produced webcasts out there–poorly lighted, bad sound, etc. To you people I recommend Lights, Camera, Action: Fool Proof Tips to Produce the Most Polished Webcasts on the Planet. This webcast includes Q&A with the respected Jan Ozer, contributing editor for Streaming Media and EventDV and blogger for AV Technology.

Chris Anderson, TED Curator, Entrepreneur, Idea Spreader, Etc.

August 19th, 2011 No comments

Few conference programmers can legitimately call themselves “curators.” Chris Anderson can. With a strong background in journalism, publishing and business, Anderson grew Future Publishing in the UK, sold it and moved on to the California tech boom in the 90′s, founding Imagine Media. I remember watching the Imagine empire grow in California during the dot-com boom. They always had great billboards along Highway 101 south of San Francisco. Imagine created Business 2.0 magazine, a seminal journal of the internet explosion, also the popular games website IGN, and over 100 other publications. In 1996, his success allowed him to create the private nonprofit Sapling Foundation, with the goal of tackling tough global issues by leveraging media, technology, entrepreneurship, and ideas. In 2001 got the conference bug, acquired TED and the rest is history. TED is what every business events should be: focused, passionate, and uncompromising about quality content. Plus, it’s mostly free to anyone with a browser. TED’s presenter guidelines, known as the TED commandments, will be useful to anyone recruiting speakers, especially if you’ve got talkers who are burned out or new to the game. There are a lot of ways to follow Chris: On twitter @tedchris, on the TED website, here’s a great interview with Chris on, here’s his Wikipedia page

I Just Blogged About The Most Amazing Press Release Ever Written

January 14th, 2011 No comments

Hot NewsLike you, my inbox and RSS feed is bursting with press releases. Most, I ignore. But I had to stop what I was doing and read The Most Amazing Press Release Ever Written. This release certainly lives up to its aptly descriptive title. According to sources very close to the author of this release, “the science behind this Earth-shattering news release lies in its simplicity–no science, just pure old press release craftsmanship.” Industry wags and mucky-mucks broadly echo this sentiment. According to some, just linking to this press release can greatly increase reader interest in a blog post. “I liked it, so I thought I’d blog about about it,” said I, the author of this blog post. “IMHO, others may be interested in it as well. Only time will tell.”

Categories: Hot News Tags:

Virtual Event Platform Providers Get Hybrid Religion

December 27th, 2010 4 comments

This year, I’ve noticed many of the major virtual events platform providers have begun to tout the benefits of the hybrid model. It started last December, with this blog entry from Dennis Shiao, Client Services Executive for InXpo, proclaiming 2010 the “Year of the Hybrid Event.” It hasn’t happened, but we’ve still got four days to go—maybe there will be an explosion of hybrid event activity later this week.

Looking ahead to next year, in a Business News Daily year-ender, Sharat Sharan, President and CEO of ON24, doubles down on Shiao’s expired prediction: “In today’s cost-conscious business environment, demand for hybrid events—a physical event with a virtual extension before, during or after the physical event takes place—will continue Read more…

In the Times: This Year’s Take on Virtual Events. Comdex in the Ether.

December 3rd, 2010 No comments

NewYorkTimeslogo379x64Once or twice a year, one of the big media wags does a think piece on Virtual Events and this week it was the New York Times. Technology articles like this should include an index of previous articles on the same subject, like this one from 2007 I found in the Washington Post. Then we could have the fun of going back to read all the predictions that don’t pan out.

The Times article avoids the kind of hyperbole that we used to see back in the day, and the author was smart to speak with Michael Doyle at the Virtual Edge Institute, who wisely explains that virtual events need to be part of an ongoing (perpetual) social experience. The IBM example in the article is interesting, but these vendor-driven attempts at creating Read more…

Categories: New Models Tags:

In Marketplace365, Performance-Based Marketing Meets Virtual Events

August 2nd, 2010 No comments

Marketplace365It has been interesting to see the “virtual event” platforms forge closer and stronger ties with the gatekeepers of content, including media firms, consultants, and (in some cases) vendors. On24, Webex, and Unisfair have all pushed further in this direction. Now, Onstream Media has launched new virtual event platform (Marketplace365) that is pushing the partnership paradigm further, allowing a producer to start virtual events for free and pay only as they generate revenue.

At B2BPresence we believe that the Google AdSense “pay-for-performance” approach will eventually clone and adapt itself to every marketing ecosystem. Marketplace365 has opened the door for performance-based marketing in virtual events, and competitors will Read more…

To Save Money, Don’t Overlook Craigslist

December 10th, 2009 No comments

craigslistThis upcoming year, any time I have a basic easily outsourced task, I’m going to look to Craigslist first. What used to be a good second option resource for business services is now a brimming cornucopia of high-quality, low-cost resources. Case in point: I needed a photographer for a basic promotional job this week. A short post on Craigslist brought 30 (THIRTY!) responses within two hours, including some photographers with exceptional portfolios. Some of this may be a function of the economy. As with anything that seems to good to be true, there are caveats: You have to be explicit and unwavering in pricing. Anyone offering services should have at least a basic web site that doesn’t look “hinkey.” Talk to the provider by phone before committing to anything. For tasks that are more than a day in length, engage the provider for a brief period at first–if it works out you can usually extend the engagement.

Categories: Tips Tags:

A New Generation of Leads

November 24th, 2009 No comments

RBII’ve worked in a lot of different business media environments. Almost every organization that I’ve encountered is loathe to be associated with the “low class” function of lead generation. Traditionally, business media organizations, especially editors, want to be thought of as expert commentators on high-level issues of their day, and the iconic apex of their art form was the long form feature article–a linear, generalized, impersonal information experience that will eventually go the way of the radio play. The dirty mechanics of generating customers and sales always took place outside of the tent.
I’ve always been fascinated with the dirty mechanics, including lead gen, indexing functions (like directories or buyers guides), and community building (all building blocks for successful Read more…

Twitter: A Series of Tubes

November 3rd, 2009 No comments

twitterAs poor Senator Ted Stevens once told us, “the Internet is not something that you just dump something on. It’s not a big truck. It’s a series of tubes.” And then the laughter started.
I’m going to defend the Senator’s metaphor: The Internet is developing an underlying infrastructure (plumbing) that will support an impressive sprawl of new information communities. Chief among these is Twitter. Upon launch, Twitter in and of itself was easy to understand and caught on quickly but quickly earned the disdain of all of my busy colleagues, who saw it only as another place to try and avoid Kutcheresque gossipolemic. But with its open structure and immediacy, Twitter is emerging as an important piece of plumbing for enterprise messaging. I’ve seen more and more Tweetup references in conference coverage Read more…