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Jason Thomas
CTSM Candidate
Portfolio

Director, Event Marketing
Laureate Education, Inc.
4108438433 | Jason.thomas@laureate.net

Table of Contents
VitalStatistics........................................................................................................................................................3
CandidateProfile..............................................................................................................................................3
CompanyProfile................................................................................................................................................5
Overview...............................................................................................................................................................7
EventSchedule/MeasureableEventObjectives.................................................................................................8
EventSchedule..................................................................................................................................................8
MeasurableEventObjectives.........................................................................................................................11
ManagementofEventDesignandProduction...................................................................................................16
ManagementofIntegratedMarketingCommunications...................................................................................19
ManagementofResultsReporting.....................................................................................................................24
Conclusion...........................................................................................................................................................27
References..........................................................................................................................................................29

Vital Statistics

Candidate Profile

Ireceivedmyfirstintroductiontotradeshowswhileatmyfirstrealjob,ShimadzuScientific
Instruments,Inc.asaninterninthemarketingdepartment.Ibeganworkingwithmymanager,
theMarketingCommunicationsManager,whowasalsoinchargeofthe75tradeshowsthe
companyattendedeachyear.IwassointriguedbyfacetofacemarketingchannelsthatIwas
hooked.IquicklyrealizedIhadaknackforprocessandthinkingthroughthedetailsofanevent
andhoweachrelatestotheattendeeexperience.Over10yearsago,mymanagerandIbegan
topursueourCTSMcertificationtogether.Throughouttheyears,Ihaveworkedtowardsthe
goalofachievingmycertification.ThisportfoliorepresentstheculminationofagoalIhavehad
formanyyears.
Mypassionhasshiftedfromtradeshowstoeventmarketing.Throughoutmycareer,Ihave
heldpositionswhereIhavehaddirectresponsibilityforeventmarketing.Theideaof
developinganeventwherepreviouslyonedidnotexist,fromthegroundup,isexhilarating.
EachpositionIhaveacceptedthroughmycareerhasaffordedmeadifferentandunique
perspectiveofmarketingandeventmanagement.Multipleindustriesandroleshavegivenme
awellroundedknowledgebase.
Thereareverylimitedformaltrainingoptionsfortradeshoworeventprofessionals.Icurrently
holdanAssociatesDegreeinBusinessAdministration.IamalsoaCertifiedEmailMarketing
Professional.Alongtheway,Ihavetakenmanysmallercoursesandtrainingprogramsfrom
variedseminarsandtrainingprograms.Ihavefoundthatcertificationprogramsaremore
usefulandofferamoretargetedskillsetthantraditionaleducation.Certificationprograms,
suchastheCTSM,aretheidealwaythatworksformetolearnandapplywhatIhavelearnedin
afastandrelevantway.
MycurrentpositionisDirectorofEventsMarketingwithinourLeadDevelopmentMarketing
Department.IhavegrownthispositionconsiderablyinmysixyearcareerwithLaureate
Education,Inc.Whatstartedasasideprojecthasevolvedintoafullybudgetedandsupported
marketingchannel.Myroleiscurrentlyleaderofthissmallteamwhoisresponsibleforall
prospectiveconversioninformationsessionsandonlineevents.Icoordinateamultifunctional
team,responsibleforallaspectsofdevelopingandimplementinganyeventweproduce.

Ioverseetheentireprocess,fromstrategyandplanningthroughexecutionandpostevent
reporting.Onanygivenday,Icanbereviewingthecontractsforanindividualeventto
analyzingquarterlytrends.Beingaccountableforallaspects,endtoend,reallyallowsmeto
usemyvisionandholisticinsightoneveryelementofoureventsprogram.Additionally,Ialso
helpalignthechannelwithoverallcompanygoalsandmarketingdepartmentobjectives.While
thisroleleavesmelittletimetoperformthetasksneededtoproduceanevent,Idoteach,
monitor,andapprovetheworkthateverymemberofmyteamdoes.Session301
IntroductiontoEventMarketing,pointstothereasonmyrolesexistsbyaskingthequestion
Doeseveryoneunderstandthebigpicture?Thissinglequestionsummarizestheneedfor
someoneinmypositionaswellastheroleIassumequitenicely.

Vision ExecutiveDirector MaryLouiseWrabley
Coordination Director JasonThomas
Email
Specialist
PhilChorney
Webinar Sr.Manager
MichelleWilkinson
CollegeExperts
Marcomms
SubjectMatter
Experts Guest
Speakers
F2FEvent Manager ChristinaCantu
Rep BethFoster
Rep AlRamos
Rep KristinBetz
Rep Mariadel
Kostuch
Rep PatFord
GuestSpeakers
Planners
AmityAldrich

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separateenrollmentadvisorsitesinColumbia,MD,Tempe,AZ,SanAntonio,TX,LosAngeles,
CA.IresideinourcorporateheadquartersinBaltimore.
WaldenUniversityoccupiesthehighereducationmarketsector.Ourdiversedegreeprogram
offeringsallowustoalsosupportmanyseparatemarkets.Waldeniscomprisedoffive
separatecolleges:
RichardW.RileyCollegeofEducationandLeadership
CollegeofManagementandTechnology
CollegeofHealthSciences
CollegeofSocialandBehavioralSciences
CollegeofUndergraduateStudies
Waldensaccredited,highqualitylearningexperiencebeginswiththeuniquewaywedevelop
ourprograms.Eachprogramisdevelopedincollaborationwithindustryexpertsandhigher
educationexpertstoensureourdegreeprogramsarerelevantintodaysworld.Ourlearning
modelcentersaroundlearnittoday,applyittomorrowlearningobjectives.Thisprocess
allowsourstudentstomakeanimmediateimpact,intheirorganization,career,and
community.
WaldenUniversitysmissionisasfollows:Walden,anaccreditedonlineuniversity,offers
degreeprogramsthatfocusonrelevantskillstobeusedimmediatelyintheworkplaceandin
yourcommunity.Ouronlinedegreeprogramsreflectourmissionofpromotingpositivesocial
change.Ourmissionofsocialchangeisevidentineverythingwedo.
Ourlistofcompetitorsisgrowingeachmonth.Astraditionalbrickandmortaruniversities
expandtheirdegreeportfoliostoincludeonlineclasses,theyencroachonourestablished
marketshareandreach.OurprimarycompetitorsarePhoenixUniversityandCapella
University.Myeventmarketingchannelisuniqueandakeydifferentiatoramongour
competitors.Sincewedonothaveacustomerstorefront,Ihavetocreatethisineveryevent
weproduce.Weoffertheabilityforanonlinestudenttostayconnectedandfeelapartofa
community.

Overview

Thisportfoliowillreviewthesummationoffouryearsofeventsthatconsistoftheoutputfor
myteam;theEventsMarketingTeam,withintheLeadDevelopmentDepartmentinMarketing.
Ihavechosentoincludetheentireyearlyeventprograminthisportfoliobecausethesumof
theevents,andtheirsuccess,mostaccuratelydepictshowIhaveappliedtheteachingsofthe
CertifiedTradeShowMarketer(CTSM)programtomywork.Theindividualeventsallhavethe
sameobjectivesandgoals.Becausetheprogramhasculminatinggoals,itseemsonly
appropriatetoreviewtheentireprogramsevolution.
MyfocusforthisportfoliowillbereviewingthemajoradjustmentsandenhancementsthatI
havemadetotheprogram.Thesechangeshavemademajorincreasesinbothefficiencyofthe
programaswellashelpingtheprogramexceeditsbudgetedgoals.Iwillbefocusingonthe
informationsession,oreventportionofthisplan.Informationsessionsareactualfacetoface
events,andmostrelevanttothisportfolio,andalignmostcloselywiththeteachingsofthe
CTSMprogram.
TheprogramconsistsofInformationSessionsandWebinarsthatuseourprospectivedatabase
asanaudience.Wehavehostedavaryingnumberofeventsthroughouttheyears,usuallyin
the400eventsayearrange.ThenumberandsizeofeventsissomethingthatIhaveworked
hardtobalancefromabudget/resource/performanceperspective.Alleventsarehostedinthe
UnitedStates.Theseinformationsessionsandwebinarsaretargetedatprospectswhohave
expressedinterestinattendingWaldenUniversity.Thepresentationtopicsattempttomove
prospectsthroughtheirconversionlifecycle;ultimatelyendingwiththeprospectenrollingin
ouruniversity.Informationsessionsaregeographicallytargetedeventsthatarehostedinareas
withsufficientdensityofprospects.Eventscanconsistofahotelbased,classroomstylesetup,
orarestaurant,dinnerstylemeeting.Wewilldelveintomoredetailabouttheseeventsinlater
sections.Thosedetailsarepertinenttothisportfolioastheyareelementsthathaveevolved
frommyCTSMteachings.

Event Schedule / Measureable Event Objectives

Event Schedule

Oureventscheduleplanningprocesshasevolvedovertheyears.Whatpreviouslywasavery
shorttimeframeforeventschedulinghasgrownintoafullyearstrategicdevelopment
initiative.Ourmoreinvolvedandlongerplanningcyclegivesusmorestrategiclatitudeandfar
longerleadtimestomarketourevents.Eventsarenowstrategicallyplannedutilizingawealth
ofhistoricalknowledgeandresearch.Session20111SelectingtheRightShows:TheCritical
Decision,ELC#1(StepOne:backgroundAnalysis),wasinstrumentalinguidingmetodecide
whatresearchinformationIneededtomakevalideventselectiondecisions.Sinceanindustry
specificmarketingeventdatabasedoesnotexist,Ihadtodevelopmyown.Thissessionwas
instrumentalinhelpingmedesignmyresearchrequesttoourBusinessIntelligenceteam.We
performedamultiphasedspatialanalysisreportutilizingEsriIncorporatedstapestryand
geographicalinformationsystem(GIS)data.Thisinformationgaveusaclearpicture,downto
theDesignatedMarketArea(DMA)levelofwhatourpenetrationandmarketpotentialwasin
allDMAsacrosstheUnitedStates.Thisresearchgaveusourareasofneed.Thefigurebelow
depictsagraphicaloutputfromouranalysis.

Resource Recommendations Based on


Market Performance and Potential
No Activities in the Past
BAU
Not Recommended
Re-evaluate to invest in more resources
Re-evaluate to reduce resources
0 4 8 2
Decimal Degrees

Onemajorelementthatwasincludedinourresearchprojectalsoincludedourrichhistorical
informationfrompasteventperformance.Thispastperformancehelpedtorefineour
conclusions.
ThefinaloutputofourspatialanalysisincludedalistofourtopDMAs.Thenextstepsincluded
alengthyplanningprocesswhereweevaluatedthefollowingitemstocometoafinaldateand
locationschedule:
Availablebudget
Availableresources
Travelfeasibility
DMArecommendationadherence
o TargetswithintheDMA
Lastly,welookedatourreturnontimespent.Itisimportanttoustospendtimeoneventsand
eventypesthatproducethebestreturnonourfiniteresources.Anyeventsoreventtypesthat
donotshowapositivereturnareeliminatedfromfutureschedules.Thisgivesustheflexibility
totestneweventtypeswithoutwastingtimeonlowerproducingevents.
ThefinalplanningprocessoutputconsistsofaMicrosoftVisiocalendardocumentthatputs
venueplacestoactualdates.Thisdocumentbecomesthefoundationforouractual
implementationprocesses.ThisVisiocalendarallowsustorefineourbudgetandforstaffto
plantheirtravelaccordingly.Anexcerptisdepictedbelow.

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Aprimoisanenterprisemarketingmanagementsystemthatwascustomimplementedformy
company.AllofoureventsarelistedusingAprimo.Thissystemnowbecomesthecentral
systemthatkeepsallofthedifferentteammemberscoordinatedandontask.Iamfortunate
thatinapreviousrolewithWaldenasMarketingOperationsManager,Iwasoneofthethree
architectsoftheAprimoinstallationanddevelopment.Myadvancedandintimateknowledge
ofthesystemaffordsmetheabilitytoadaptthesystemtomyteamsneeds.Aprimobecomes
thefoundationofourtrackingandreporting.Planningofthismagnitudewouldnotbepossible
withoutthissystem.Aprimosforcemultiplyingabilitieswillbecomefurtherevidentinlater
sections.

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Measurable Event Objectives

Session20311TheNutsandBoltsofBudgetingforResults,ELC#6(UsingTemplatestoTrack
andManageBudget)gavemelotsofideastoenhanceourbudgetingprocess.Ourbudgeting
processnotonlycalculatesactualfundingfortheeventplan,butalsoourbudgetperformance
goals.Aneventprogramofthissizeandscalerequiresaveryformulaicandmethodicalbudget
process.Utilizinghistoricalperformanceandactualcosts,weareabletocalculateaverage
performanceandaveragecostspereventtype.Thisbasedatagivesmetheinsighttobuilda
GoalScenario&Assumptionsmodel.Plannedeventscalculatedbyaveragecostand
performancebuildmyyearlybudgetautomatically.
Wehaveamultitudeofeventtypesatourdisposal.Throughtesting,wehavebeenableto
developothereventtypesthatareaseffective,andinsomecasesmoreeffective.The
combinationandfrequencyofeventtypeshelpsuspenetrateourtargetdemographicsmore
thoroughly.BelowisasummaryofthedifferenteventtypesthatIwillreferenceinmy
budgetingandobjectivesanalysis.Asstatedearlier,Iwillonlycovertheeventformatsthatare
facetofaceinnature.

12

Dinner/FieldRecruitmentDinner
Thisformatisourmosteffective.Weeitherhosttheeventourselvesor
enlistthehelpoflocalFieldRecruiters.Theircontactscanhelpincreasethe
attendancerateby510%.Additionally,theycanextendourreachintoareas
wetypicallywouldfindcostprohibitivetotravelto.
Dinnereventsareavariationofadinnermeeting.Attendeesaretreatedto
dinnerwhileviewingapresentation.Therunofshowisorchestratedinsuch
awaythatthefoodserviceandpresentationworkinharmonytoprogress
theeventalongandfacilitiatedifferentneedsthroughouttheevening.The
additionofdinnerincreasesourattendancerateoveratraditional
informationsessionby50%.
InfoSession/FieldRecruitmentInfoSession
Thistraditionaleventformatiswhatmostuniversitiesperform;aclassroom
settingwithminimalextras.
Wehaveupgradedthetraditionalinfosessionbeyondfoodandbeverage
basics,includingmoresubstantialfoodandadditionalbranding.
Whilelowerattended,thisformatstillhasmeritinneworuntested
demographicswherealowercostortrialrunisnecessary.
EnrollmentAdvisor(EA)Session
Thismoreinvolvedeventformatinvolvesalargereventstaff.Inadditionto
myrepresentatives,wealsoincludeEnrollmentAdvisors,whicharethe
equivalanttoinsidesalespersons.Sinceoursalesprocesstypicallydoesnot
involvemeetingone'sEnrollmentAdvisor,ingeographicareaswherethis
formatispossible,itisanattractiveandeffectivealternative.
Theeventisruninaoneononeappointmentstyleeventwithashort
overviewpresentation.Attendeeshavetheopportunitytomeetwithan
EnrollmentAdvisorandworkwithrepresentatives.
Therichexperiencesandknowledgeanattendeeleaveswithmakethis
eventahighenrollmentconversionevent.

13

Eacheventtypehasanaveragecosttohosttheevent.
Session Type Average of Activity
Cost
Dinner $3,500
Field Recruitment Dinner $3,500
EA Session $1,500
Info Session $900
Field Recruitment Info Session $900

Wehaveaseparatelineitemthatweusefortrackingshippingbyeachevent
Session Type Average of Activity
Cost
Dinner $350.00
Field Recruitment Dinner $350.00
EA Session $350.00
Info Session $350.00
Field Recruitment Info Session $350.00

Weaddanextralineitemforadditionalaudiovisualcoststhatcouldberequiredateachevent
site.
Session Type Average of Activity
Cost
Dinner $150.00
Field Recruitment Dinner $150.00
EA Session $150.00
Info Session $150.00
Field Recruitment Info Session $150.00

Averageattendanceisthebasisforcalculatingourperformanceforeachevent.Wetrack
multipleperformanceobjectivesforeachevent,aswellasanoverallrollup.Bymultiplyingour
projectedattendancepereventbyourperformancemetrics,wecaneasilyprojecteachevents
potentialgoals.Eachofthesemetricsaretrackedbyreviewingoureventattendeesthroughout
theircustomerlifecyclewiththeuniversity.

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16

Management of Event Design and Production

Previouseventsetupwasextremelylimited.Eachrepresentativewouldtravelwithabanner
standandonetablerunnerinadditiontohisorherlaptopandLCDprojector.Inmyopinion,
thiswasextremelylimited.Traditionalinformationsessionsincludedcheeseandcrackersand
basicbeverages.Ifeltthatthissignificantlydeviatedfromattendeesexpectations.Session
31110HowtoGrowYourBrand:IncorporatingBrandMarketingintoyourExhibitProgram,
ELC#2(Howtopositionexhibitmarketingwithinthegreaterrealoforganizationwidebrand
management)callsforconsistency.Iwantedtoensurethatwhetheranattendeecametoone
orfiveevents,theywitnessedthesamebrandstandards.Akeycomponentofoursuccessasa
universityreliesonourprospectsandstudentsmakingtheirwaythroughthebrandassociation
processthroughtoloyalty.Thisloyaltyleadstoprospectreferrals.Oureventsstrivetotake
ourattendeesthroughtheprocessandprovideananchorpointforourprospectsandstudents
toreferotherprospects.Sinceoureventscouldbethefirstinteractionaprospecthaswithour
university,orbeacontinuingengagementpoint,theyhavetobeconsistentatalltimes.
Theprimarypurposesoftheseeventsaretopresentinformationtotheaudienceonatopic
thatisrelevanttotheprospect.Theenvironmentshouldbeconducivetothisobjective.Every
elementofthisenvironmentaldesignisbuiltsothatitreinforcestheobjectives.Becauseofthe
multitudeofroomlayouts,itwasnecessarytodesignakitthatwouldbeflexibleenoughto
handleanysetupneedsaswellasbecosteffectivetoshipandreuse.Ourkitwasbuiltwith
thefollowingrequirements:
1. Selfcontainedandeasilyshippable
2. Selfhiding
3. Satisfypresentationprojectingrequirements
a. Presentationpodium
b. Presentationscreens
4. Havedirectionalbrandingelements
5. Roombrandingelements
6. Applicationstation
7. Containtoolboxequipment
Nothingexistsinthemarkettodaythatsatisfiedalloftheseobjectivesin
anoutoftheboxtypesolution.Themostcosteffectivewaytoachieve
theserequirementswastodesignamodifiedtradeshowboothpopup
implementation.Thisextremelycustomizedoptionallowedforthe
greatestflexibility.Thesolutionwasa10x10popupboothcase.This
case,withacustomsizedcasesockhousedallkitmaterialsandturned
intothepresentationpodium.Thisdesignallowsfortheselfhidingofthekitandanyunused

17

materialsheldwithinit.Thepodiumandsockalsoaddedanotherbrandingelement.Session
21549CostCuttingTipsEverySmallExhibitorShould,suggestedthatinsteadofshipping
multiplecontainers,whichwill incurmultiplehandlingcharges,this
singleunitmethodwillsave moneythroughoutitsusage.
Becausetheprimarypurposeof eacheventistopresentinformation,
eachrepresentativetravelswitha laptopandanLCDprojector.Thekit
podiumisthepresentingpoint. ToreduceA/Vcost,twobanner
standswereprintedwith primarilywhitespaceandhad
magnetsattachedtoeachsideof theseams.Thesetwobanner
stands,whenmagnetized together,becomeaprojection
screen.Whenascreenis providedoreventsizeexceedswhat
thecustomprojectionscreencanhandle,thescreenscanbeleftinthekitandhidden.
Tosatisfyourneedfordirectionalandroombrandingelements,
weloadedthekitwithflexibleandusefulitems.Twobanner
standswereprinted;onewithourlogoandanotherwiththe
wordsInformationSessionandalogowereincludedinevery
kit.Thesetwobannerstandscanbeusedto
guideorprospectstotheroomlocationor
addadditionalbrandingelementsinthe
roomifattendeetrafficflowiseasyor
accountedforbythevenue.Additional
brandingelementsincludeonetablecloth,
typicallyusedataregistrationtable,andone
fabrictablerunner.
Anadditionalcalltoactionforattendeesateacheventistoapplytoour
university.Thisapplicationishousedexclusively
online.Wewantedtobereadytoacceptany
applicationsthatanattendeewasreadytofillout.Again,wewereable
toaccountforthisinourkitdesigntoincludeanapplicationstation.
Thisstationpicturedattheright;encompassedalaptopandapopup
kiosk.EacheventisbookedwithWIFIincludedattheevent.Forrare
instanceswhenWIFIisunavailablefromthevenue,eachrepresentative
travelswithaWIFIaircardtheycanuse.Sessiontestsshowedthat
applicationsubmissionsrose6%ateventswhereanapplicationstation
waspresent.
Eventdesignextendsbeyondsimplytheroomitself.Everythingfrom
presentationdevelopmenttothefoodservicehasbeencarefully
thoughtthroughtoorchestrateamemorableandproductiveexperiencefortheattendees.The
APPLICATIONSTATION

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largestpartofanyeventbuildistherepresentativesstaffingtheevent.Session21311
BeyondtheBasicsofBoothSelling,ELC#5(85%ofyourshowsuccessdependsonyourstaff.)
Theirabilitytohandleanyeventsetupandanyattendeeiscriticaltothesuccessofeachevent.
Eachrepresentativespendsconsiderabletime,approximately20hoursamonth,ontraining
andrefreshing:everythingfromproductknowledgetopublicspeakingandeventmanagement
tactics.Beyondanyenvironmentalmaterials,ourrepresentativeshavethehighestandmost
profoundabilitytoaffectoureventattendees.Theyhandlethepresentationdelivery.
However,beyondjustdeliveringapresentation,theymustalsoansweranyattendeequestions
andhelpthemwithanynextsteps.Theybecomethefaceofouruniversityattheseevents.
Buildingontherepresentativesknowledgeofuniversityprogramsandprocesses,
presentationsarecreated.ThesepresentationsaremorethansimplyPowerPointsthata
representativewillreadthrough.Greatcareistakentounderstandthepsychologyofhowan
attendeewillrelate,understand,andretaininformation.Nopresentationsectionwilllast
longerthan1520minutesbeforeaQ&Abreakisintroduced.Numerousstudieshaveshown
thatattentionspanswillbegintowanebeyondthislengthoftime.Theservicetimesforour
dinnereventsarecoordinatedwiththisinmindtoensurethatattendeesarefocusedandready
forthenextsubjectarea.Theentirepresentationisbuiltonthecompoundingruleofthree.
Thehumanbrainretainsinformationmoreeasilywhentopicsandpointsarepresentedin
threes.Threepointspersection,threeoverallsections,soonandsoforth.Wealsodepict
informationinmultiplyways.Itispossibletorecallinformation5060%moreaccuratelywhen
itisgraphicalinnaturethanjusttextbased.Weincorporatemultipleinfographicsand
diagramswhenpossibletoenhanceattendeesrecollectionoftheinformationtheysawthe
previousnight.Therepresentativesfurtherenhancetheirpresentationdeliverywithvocaland
visualemphasis.Cadence,repetition,pitch,power,eventheirpositionintheroomduring
certainslidesallenhancetheimpacttheymakewhenpresenting.Ihavespentconsiderable
timetrainingtherepresentativesonthesepoints,toalevelwheretheyhaveexhaustedmy
knowledgeinthisarea.
Allsaid;oureventscanresembleatheatricalproductionmorethanatraditionalbusiness
meeting.Session31110HowtoGrowYourBrand:IncorporatingBrandMarketingintoYour
ExhibitProgram,ELC#7(Howtobringyourbrandtolifeinthespotlight.)Therepresentatives
carefullyorchestrateanexperienceforourattendeesthatconnectwiththeattendeesona
personallevelandgivethemaglimpseintowhatitwillbeliketobeastudentofouruniversity.

19

Management of Integrated Marketing Communications

TheLeadDevelopmentdepartmentsprimarychargeistopenetrateourprospectivestudent
database.Sincemychannel,EventMarketing,isapartofthislargerdepartment,Itoomust
includetheLeadDevelopmentobjectivesintomyown.Theultimateoutcomesareattendance
atoneofoureventsandhavetheseattendeesenrollintheuniversity.Manyofthe
methodologiesIusearefoundationsoftheLeadDevelopmentmarketingstrategies,with
tacticalreinterpretations.
Weincorporatemanyothermarketingchannels,includingemail,directmail,andlistingour
eventsonourcompanywebsite.Additionally,ourinternalandexternalsalesteamsalso
incorporateoureventsintotheirsalesconversationsandmarketingendeavors.Ourmatrix
approachtomarketingincludesmanystakeholdersandchannelowners.Emailanddirectmail
aredeveloped,implementedandtrackedentirelyonmyteam.Session30810Business
MarketingStrategiesandTradeShows,ELC#1(Strategies,objectives,missionstatements,
target,profiling,andtacticsareallessentialelementsofasuccessfulmarketingplan)provided
thefoundationforunderstandingwhichchannelwouldbethemosteffective.Additionally,it
allowedmetohelpfocuseachchannelsstrategyandtacticsappropriately.Furthermore,
Session31511IntegratedMarketingCommunications,ELC#2(Matchingshowobjectivesto
therightmedium,)helpedmechoosethecorrectchannelwithmyobjectives.Imustalso
factorinotherchannelandteamobjectivestohelpthemconstructtheirmediumstohelpme
obtainmyobjectives.Keepingsomanystakeholdersandchannelownerscoordinatedand
collectivelycontributingtomyobjectivesisanotheraspectofmyposition.Mychannels
successnotonlylieswithmyteamsdirectactionsbutthecollectiveworkoftheentire
marketingandenrollmentdepartment.

20

Emailaccountsforthelionshareofoureventcommunications,aswellasthegreatest
contributortoregistrationpopulation.Weutilizeemailtoinviteourprospects.Wealsouse
emailtoprocessourremindermessagingandanyposteventfollowupcommunications.The
guidingstrategyforthischannelistogainregistrationsforeachevent.Alltacticsdescribed
belowhelptoaccomplishthisstrategy.
Session30810BusinessMarketing
StrategiesandTradeShows,ELC#2
(Strategiesarebroadanddirectionalin
nature,providingaframeandstructurefor
tacticaldevelopmentanduse)helpsto
remindmethateachtacticneedstobe
indicativeofthisstrategy.
Theadvanceddatabasesegmentation,
multipleemaillaunching,anddynamic
emailprocessingisallmadepossiblebyour
forcemultiplier,Aprimo.Thissystem
housesourprospectivestudentdatabase,
isourmassemailengine,aswellasour
eventtrackingsystem.Bycombiningall
ourworkintothissystem,wegainedthe
abilitytoverytacticallyandstrategically
targettheappropriatepopulationofthe
databaseforeachevent,andcommunicate
witheachprospectonanextremely
relevant,individualizedbasis.Additionally,
wegainaveryrobustcontacthistory
databasewherewecantrackourprospect
behavior.
Ouremaileventinvitationsfollowa
geographicallytargetedroute.Thisroute
iscomprisedofsectionalcenterfacility
(SCF)codesforallofthemajorcitiesthat
weperformevents.Ourroute
methodologywasdevelopedtoallowfor
greaterconsistencyandcomparison
reporting.Thishasprovedtobemorebeneficialoverradiusstylesegmentation.Withradius
stylesegmentation,wewouldnothaveidenticalpopulationsofprospectsthatweinviteto
eventsinareaswherewevisitfrequently,butnotnecessarilythesamevenue.Byhaving

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22

Allofthesesegmentationelementsarethebasisforouremailinvitationaudience.Thisstarting
populationisthensentthroughaneventspecificinvitationinteraction.Again,ourAprimo
systemhousestheframeworkforthisselfrunningandselfregulatingsystem.Aseriesofthree
emailinvitationsarelaunchedtoeachprospectforeachevent.Thesystemselfregulatesby
removinganyonethatregistersforaneventorunsubscribesfromfurtheremail
communications.Thisinteractionreevaluatesthepopulationbeforeeachinvitationlaunch.A
prospectcaneasilyclickabuttonintheiremailandregistertoattendanevent.
Tofurtherenhancethereachofthe
routepopulation,wealsolauncha
singledirectmailpostcardthatalso
invitestheroutetoanevent.The
onlyvariationtothesegmentation
includesachangeinoptout.Instead
ofexcludingemailunsubscribers,we
excludedirectmailoptouts.This
allowsustocommunicatetoanyone
thathasoptedoutofemail.TheresponsemechanismiseitherashortenedlinkoraQRcode.
Eitherfunctionwilloperatethesameasclickingthelinkinanemail.Ourinvitationpostcards
areanextremelycoordinatedeffort.Theyaretargetedtodeliverwithaninhomedateafew
daysafterthefirstemailinvitation.Postcardshavebeenextremelyeffective.Theycurrently
accountfor30%ofourregistrationtraffic.Postcardregistrantshavea30%attendancerate.
Emailisanextremelychallengingchanneltotrackandrefine.Multiplemetricsneedtobe
trackedonaconsistentbasis.Wetrackeverythingthatwecan.Successforouremailsfallinto
thefollowingranges:
1. 80%inboxdeliverability
2. 7%openrate
3. 13%clicktoopenrate

Wetrack
inviteint
measure
benchma
resultsto
ourchan
channel.
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23
aunch.This
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24
Man
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ethe
einto
s
evel,

26

Again,Session110MetricsMatter:ChoosingMeasurementToolsThatWillBestEvaluate
YourProgram,ELC#4(HowdoIknowwhattotrackormeasure?)helpedmefocusonwhatI
willbeexpectedtoanswertoofrommysuperiors.Anythingthatwonthelpmegainagreater
knowledgeofmyeventprogramorhelpmefinetuneitsperformancesimplyisnttracked.
However,Idoaskthequestionifwecanttrackit,whyarewedoingit?
Allofourresultsreportingallowustofinetuneoureventprogramineverylevel.Whatcould
appeartobeasmallchangeinoneevent,couldforcemultiplytoexponentialimprovementsin
theentireprogram.

27

Conclusion

IhavelearnedagreatmanythingsthroughoutmyCTSMinstructionfromthecourseinstructors
andthecoursematerials.ThemostoverarchingthemeIhavetakentoheartisthatmajor
changesandexploringnewterritoryisnotalwaysthebestoption.Rather,thefinetuningand
refiningofmyexistingtacticsandstrategiescansometimeslendtobetterperformance.Plan,
test,refine,testagainhasbecomeamantrathatIpracticerepeatedlyinmydailymanagement
ofmyprogram.IalsofounditcomfortingthatsomeoftheclassesvalidatedwhatIhadtested
andlearnedonmyown.Inthislineofwork,noteverythingislearnedfromaclassroomsetting.
IamenlightenedthatIhavetheabilitytolearnfrompastexperiencesandinterpretthemina
meaningfulway.Takingitonestepfurther,therewereCTSMclassesthattaughtmeelements
ofaneventthatdonotwishtopartakein.OneprimeexampleiswhatIlearnedinSession
41910LiquorLiabilityandtheLaw:WhatYouneedtoKnow,ELC#5(SocialHostLiability,)
wewillnotservealcoholatourevents.Auniversityisnotinthebusinessofservingbeverages.
Thisaddsanewlevelofriskandeventmanagementthatneithermyself,normycompanywish
toundertake.Furthermore,Ifeelthatthiselementwilldetractfromourprimarygoalsand
objectivesatourevents.
Throughcontinuedtestingandrefinement,Ihavebeenabletoincreaseourenrollment
performance150%.Myprogramhasevolvedthroughouttheyears.Icanattributetomy
acquiredknowledgefromtheCTSMprogram.Eachclasshasmademereviewtheindividual
piecesofmyeventprogramandreviewhowIcandoitbetter.ThecollectiveeffecttheCTSM
programhashadonmyabilitytoleadthisteamisevidentineachofourmetricperformance
indicators.
Iamgoingtocontinuetorefineeveryelementofmyeventprogram.ThenextfocusIhaveis
ontheactualeventattendeeconversionprocessitself.Wehavedemonstratedthatwehavea
solidstrategyforgainingattendance.Nowthenextfrontieristostimulateanincreased
enrollmentconversionfromtheinformationsharedateachevent.Infourshortyears,Ihave
beenabletogrowtheteamandtheircapabilitiestonewheights.Whatpreviouslywas
consideredsuccessthen,wouldnowbeconsideredafailure.Justrecently,wetestedanew
eventformat;aptlynamedsupersession.Thisrobustformatcapitalizesoneverythingthe
teamiscapableofandutilizesallthebesttacticswehaveinoneevent.Earlyresultsfromthis
eventareextremelypromising;showinganincreaseinenrollmentvelocitythatfarexceedsany
ofourbestevents.IattributeoursuccesstothescrutinythatIplaceoneveryaspectofour
eventprogram.Ifwecannotmeasureit,thenwhydoit?
Thesupersessionisbutoneexampleofourincreasedabilities.Icannottakecreditforallof
thesuccessmyteamhasobtained.WhatIdopridemyselfonisbuildingateamthatismore
capable,moreagile,andextremelyskilledintheirareas.Ihaveutilizedmyownexperiences

28

andquestionsfromCTSMcoursesandposeditbacktomyteammatestoanswerintheirareas.
TheyknowwhatImlookingfor,andnowstrivetoanswerthequestionsbeforeIhavethem.
Iamextremelyproudoftheworkmyselfandmyteamaccomplisheveryday.Asmyown
confidencehasgrown,sohasmyteam.WritingthisportfoliohashadareflectivequalitythatI
recommendanyonedoatsomepointinhisorhercareer.Ithasmademereflectonthe
choicesImadeinmyworkaswellasmyeducation.ValidationthatIactuallyhavemasteredmy
job,andtookthestepstoberecognizedforitisapowerfulgoaltoobtain.Toobtaina
personalgoalthathastakenmanyyearstoreachhasbeenaveryhumblingandexhilarating
experience.

29

References
o VitalStaticsCandidateProfile
Session301IntroductiontoEventMarketing
o Overview
o EventObjectives/EventSchedule
Session20111SelectingtheRightShows:TheCriticalDecision,ELC#1(Step
One:backgroundAnalysis)
o EventSchedule
o MeasureableObjectives
Session20311TheNutsandBoltsofBudgetingforResults,ELC#6(Using
TemplatestoTrackandManageBudget)
Session10811HowtoMeasuretheValueofTradeShows,ELC#4(The
CommunicationActionValueChain)
o ManagementofExhibitDesignandProduction
Session31110HowtoGrowYourBrand:IncorporatingBrandMarketinginto
yourExhibitProgram,ELC#2(Howtopositionexhibitmarketingwithinthe
greaterrealoforganizationwidebrandmanagement)
Session21549CostCuttingTipsEverySmallExhibitorShould
Session21311BeyondtheBasicsofBoothSelling,ELC#5(85%ofyourshow
successdependsonyourstaff)
Session31110HowtoGrowYourBrand:IncorporatingBrandMarketinginto
YourExhibitProgram,ELC#7(Howtobringyourbrandtolifeinthespotlight...)
o ManagementofIntegratedMarketingCommunications
Session30810BusinessMarketingStrategiesandTradeShows,ELC#1
(Strategies,objectives,missionstatements,target,profiling,andtacticsareall
essentialelementsofasuccessfulmarketingplan)
Session31511IntegratedMarketingCommunications,ELC#2(Matching
showobjectivestotherightmedium)
Session30810BusinessMarketingStrategiesandTradeShows,ELC#2
(Strategiesarebroadanddirectionalinnature,providingaframeandstructure
fortacticaldevelopmentanduse)
Session31511IntegratedMarketingCommunications,ELC#5(Set
measurementbenchmarks)
o ManagementofResultsReporting
Session110MetricsMatter:ChoosingMeasurementToolsThatWillBest
EvaluateYourProgram,ELC#1(Whataremetrics?)
Session110MetricsMatter:ChoosingMeasurementToolsThatWillBest
EvaluateYourProgram,ELC#4(HowdoIknowwhattotrackormeasure?)
o Conclusion
Session41910LiquorLiabilityandtheLaw:WhatYouneedtoKnow,ELC#5
(SocialHostLiability)