The eec Email Evolution Event, is one of the best overall industry events. I am biased, as I programmed the first couple and have attended every year since then, having lost count of the years. I believe this was the tenth anniversary, but time is foggy.
Beyond seeing old friends and making new friends, the eec Event offers great content and a better experience and #eec16 was no different.
Here is my summary of the event, the good, the bad and the best bits.
What was great about #eec16?
- Location, Location, Location: New Orleans! Of all the cities, I enjoyed this city and venue the most. Build in an extra or two personal days to enjoy this bastion of culture. I praise the MAC committee for moving it from Miami. Why is New Orleans great? Food, Music and Atmosphere. Here are a few favorite moments, and a to do list should we return to NOLA next year. Dinner (or any meal) at Brennan‘s, TRG had a blast with industry friends. Brennan’s has some of the best food in town, have the Oyster’s and Snapper, stay for the Banana’s Foster. Well that was a great meal, but then head way up town (about 20 minute Uber) to the Maple Leaf and see The Rebirth Brass Brand that go on around midnight. The walls and ceiling are tin to create a
resonance that is hard to match in a room packed with people. And well then head back to Cafe Du Monde for some Beignets and coffee in the wee hours. Big thanks to, TRG VP of Research Nick Einstein for being our excellent tour guide on our pre-arrival day.
- Content and Context: There were some fantastic breakout sessions, if there was any bad to this event, is that there was too much to see as some of my favorites overlapped. I enjoyed Kelly McEver’s from NPR keynote. There was a fair amount of delivery topics, but they seemed to resonate with attendees, I was more partial to the marketing strategy sessions. But that said there was content in the context of relevancy, something for everyone. I think we have the opportunity to showcase more expertise in a more programmatic mechanism, think a maturity quiz at registration that drives participants to the correct level of knowledge given their own email marketing sophistication. All in all the speakers were fine, but there is always room for improvement. And oh yes, I am getting back #involved.
- Networking, Expo Center and Sponsors: This event is fantastic for business development, it always is. While I seek out our clients, partners and old friends, each year I am delighted to meet new email marketers and innovative tech start-ups. This in addition to the swag, NOD YOUR HEAD #bobbleheads! Our digital magazine, The Marketer Quarterly was a gold sponsor this year, so I got to enjoy that perspective too. As industry analysts, our team seeks out new vendors and technology and this event is expressly designed to find such innovation. If you didn’t get to meet or pitch us, please reach out to us here or on Twitter.
- Awards, Collaboration and Giving Back: I was honored to be named a finalist as Thought Leader of the year, but more thrilled that I lost to my good friend David Baker. His acceptance speech was so moving, a video by his daughter given that David has lost his ability to speak. I am proud to be part of an industry and the industry association with so much talent and potential. I look forward to seeing the innovations and experts that recognized in 2017. If you were at the event and the awards luncheon I hope you got a touch of the passion to get and stay involved in this industry. It takes a village :).
Until the next Meet-up that I moderate and/or host or til #eec17, all the best, David.