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Webinar: Leveraging Mobile Technology in Mega Events

The New Playbook – Leveraging Mobile Technology for Live Events with Leap Technology and former MLB executives

During this engaging MVP Interactive webinar, our guests explored the exciting possibilities of mobile technology in live and mega events. Led by James Giglio, they shared valuable insights on how to seamlessly integrate mobile apps, establish impactful brand partnerships, and stay ahead of the curve with trends like augmented reality. Their conversation emphasized the importance of creating user-friendly event apps that cater to both in-person and remote attendees, delivering a truly unforgettable event experience.

00:34 Expert Insights: Megan Call’s Journey into Live Event Technology
01:28 Jackie Saccaro Cotto’s Experience with Major League Baseball and Beyond
03:06 Leap Technology: Revolutionizing Event Experiences
06:38 Enhancing Fan Experiences with Mobile App Integrations
10:09 The Evolution of Fan Engagement and Technology in Sports
35:59 The Future of Mobile Technology in Live Events

About Megan Call

Megan Call is a Senior Director of Sales at Leap Event Technology. She has been working with Leap’s most strategic clients for almost eight years and loves live events. Megan loves to help clients leverage engaging fan journeys to understand fan behavior and individuals’ interests better. More acutely understanding what fans are interested in, unlocks the ability to create truly unforgettable experiences. Megan started as an Account Manager at FISH Technologies (later acquired by Leap) in 2016, caught the live event bug, and has been at Leap ever since! Megan has worked with each of the major sports leagues along with many other clients in the sports, entertainment, and attractions spaces. Megan resides in New Hampshire with her family.

About Jacqueline Secaira-Cotto

Jacqueline Secaira-Cotto is currently the President of  Global Giant Consulting Group.  She is an accomplished live event production professional with extensive experience in leading the strategy, concept, design and innovation of world class experiential events.  Most recently Jackie spent 15 years at Major League Baseball, as a strong collaborator who leveraged cutting edge tools and technology to dramatically increase attendee engagement, providing stakeholders with critical insight and metrics further enhancing the guests experience and partner ROI at Jewel events.  The fan experience plays a critical role for all invested in the success of live events.  Jackie and her husband Damian enjoy watching her daughter Isabella play softball as a Junior at Wesleyan University.  They reside in Valley Stream, NY with their dog Roxxy and cat Pepita.

Podcast Transcript

I want to welcome everyone back to another MVP interactive webinar today. As you’re aware, we are going to be talking about mobile technology in the live event or mega event industry. And we have two great industry experts with Megan Call with Leap Technology and Jackie Saccaro Cotto with Global Giant Consulting Group, who has also had a storied background with Major League Baseball.  

But without further ado, I would like to give both of our esteemed colleagues some opportunity to talk about their backgrounds before we get into our webinar. So Megan, please kick us off here today. Sure. Thanks, James. Thanks so much for hosting this. It’s great to be here. I joined the live event at Technology World about eight years ago exactly, and kind of stumbled into it out of…out of finance in New York City actually said, this is great, not for me, got to get into something else.

Stumbled into live event technology and really I’m stuck here I think for life because it’s so much fun, so much variation. So I have worked with a lot of amazing clients and actually Jackie is one of them. She was one of the first clients I ever worked with eight years ago. We met in San Diego out at an MLB All -Star game. So it’s fun to be doing this with their hair full circle. And yeah, we’ve seen a lot of big events leveraging mobile apps throughout the years as that technology has advanced and innovated. So I’m really excited to be talking about it today with you and Jackie.

Excellent. Well, Jackie, that sounds like a perfect segue for a good background. Yes. Well, thank you so much for having me. I’m really excited. Megan has been a great partner for almost a decade and her team has been great to work with. But yes, I am Jax Caracato. I am new to the consulting world. I spent about 15 and a half years with Major League Baseball, focused on live event production. And the fan experience is what has always been really important to me.

And working with a partner like Megan and Leap, has been really at the center of that. So our event is a large mega event, you know, over a hundred thousand people. Mobile technology has been an excellent partner with Major League Baseball and the events department on really touching those fans, engaging with those fans, communicating with those fans and just giving them the most fabulous experience that they can and celebrating different jewel events. 

So I’m very excited to be here. I do want to give a little shout out to the New York Knicks, which is where my event experience started. I know you’re from Philly. It’s OK. I’m saying this, but it was a great series. But yeah, sports have meant a lot to me throughout my life. And so I’m really excited to be here and talking to you about it.

Yeah, it was well, we’re great to have you and it made it a little easier because, you know, half the New York team was a Villanova team and I think that’s a Philadelphia team. So it’s quite OK. Whatever you need, whatever you need, whatever you need. Yeah, whatever you need to justify.

So, Megan, interesting before we get into the questions for our guests that may not be aware of leap technology, can you talk to us a little bit about what leap does is we understand that. there’s a consortium of companies and technologies that that Leap services the live event industry. And so maybe talk about your introduction to that company and background in. Yeah, yeah, happy, happy to. So Leap event technology, we’ve had a few different names as it’s a company that is a family of brands. So recently we rebranded to Leap event technology, but we were formerly called Patron. So if you had heard of Patron technology, that was us.

And like I just said, we’re a family of brands. So we have a variety of technologies and platforms that are all intended to support events on the technological side. So that’s everything from ticketing platforms. We have a few different in -house ticketing platforms geared towards different segments of that industry, whether that be, you know, conventions that need more features like exhibitor management or volunteer management.

In the convention space that tends to be where that product plays particularly well. And then we have more of an enterprise level ticketing platform for series events, timed entry events, large general admission, reserved seating events. And then last but not least, we actually do have a platform for kind of DIY events, sort of get on sale immediately. And then I guess I forget about it because it’s sort of a niche market, but we do have a platform called Leap.

Patron management that really services that sort of nonprofits arts segment with kind of memberships and yeah, nonprofit sort of patron management, if you will like the name. So that’s the ticketing side of things. And then we also have a mobile app platform, hence my invitation to participate in today’s conversation. And then within that mobile side of the business, we have a lot of engagement tools to collect data on fans beyond just the ticket purchaser, beyond the person.

Who’s actually buying the tickets maybe for themselves, but likely for more than just themselves. So our mobile and engagement tools allow event organizers like Jackie to learn more about the audience, about everybody who’s there, not just the ticket purchasers. But really that mobile and engagement platform is meant to be like, kind of think of it like the central nervous system where it’s really the kind of…the underlying technology or underlying, I really should say, technology for other things to plug into. And I know that Leap has worked with MVP before, James, because we recognize that while we can be sort of the data center for everything coming in, we won’t have all of the cutting edge technology for every single thing.

So we need to be able to integrate with the likes of MVP who have the coolest, lightest thing and need the data and you’re collecting data on site, but that data is more useful if it’s part of the entire ecosystem of an event organizers platform. So Leap has a bunch of different technologies in -house and we really just bring them all together, integrate with clients existing technologies to sort of create this well -rounded data warehouse to learn more about their audience and their fans.

Yeah, and that’s actually a great point, both from a organizer’s perspective on Jackie’s side, as well as the technology piece where you reference the fan data. And I think this is a perfect example of how technology and mobile app integration can be used to personalize attendee experiences and maybe streamline those communications during the event. So maybe both of you guys, from different perspectives, can you talk to us about those experiences and how these mobile app integrations can help personalize these experiences, both from different sides of the table, so to speak. Yeah, definitely. I’ll take that on first. But the personalized experience is something that we’re all kind of hunting, right? It’s something that we know is special to our fans. And specifically in working with Leap, we had the opportunity to really…

As I mentioned earlier, engage with our fans, connect with our fans. On the earlier part of the relationship, it was all about the fan data. There was this missing element where we did not have that fan data. And through this mobile technology, we were able to finally gather that type of information in all different realms, whether it’s satisfied or added value to the relationship that we have with our sponsors, but also with our PR folks.

Internally on the operations side. So that was, it was something that touched all those different elements. But if we’re talking about fan experience and fan engagement, it was the ultimate tool to do that and personalize it where we know our fans love the players. They want to meet the players. They want to see the players. They want to get an autograph. And this mobile technology really provided that for us in an organized, innovative way that we had not experienced before. So for us, that really took it to the top as far as creating something that would provide such great fan experience tool. For example, before this, we had our fans waiting up to four hours in line for an autograph. Through this mobile technology, our fans were able to make reservations, choose who they wanted to have an autograph of and make that reservation.

Instead of spending four hours online, you can go throughout the event. It’s usually a huge 400, 500, 700 ,000 square feet event. Make your way around when it’s time for your reservation. You get a little text on your mobile device saying, hey, 15 minutes before your reservation, come on back. So again, that’s just one example of one of the ways that this technology really took us to the top of live fan events.

And on the mobile side of it, I think we all are consumers of a variety of events and brands on the day to day. I know I get targeted push notifications all the time from various apps on my phone. And obviously that’s a very everyday reminder of personalized touch with these brands that we are all customers of. And so an event should really leverage the same type of personalization and it really isn’t just to bombard fans with like, hey, you’re a Bruins fan, Bruins hats are on sale, but it’s also, hey, you’re here with your kids. There are some specific activities that might be best for you because we know that you have kids on site with you. So it really is about enhancing the experience for the fan. That was something that Jackie really was champion of at MLB thinking of that line example.

Was not minimal, right? Waiting in line for four hours at an All -Star Fan Fest was your entire Fan Fest experience. And then the implementation of a reservation system really allowed those fans to experience the event as it was intended to be experienced. Yeah, for sure. And so, Jackie, with nearly two decades of experience within Major League Baseball and events, I mean, that’s quite a bit of time, especially for technology, right? And…

I’m sure you’ve seen the culture and the behavioral shift in how fans attended events, how technology integrated itself into events. Could you talk to us about, you know, that timeline and what you experienced as an event organizer and how you’ve seen the evolution, not only in the technology side, but maybe the fan behavior, right? And was there an aversion to the use of apps or mobile integrations or…

How much of a pleasure it was where fans were really being able to benefit from registration forms and things like that to get put through and to actually attend the event versus being queued in line. Yeah, absolutely. You know, I wore various hats throughout my time. If we talk specifically about Major League Baseball. Before that, I was at Madison Square Garden in the events department and started with the New York Knicks, but specifically with baseball. You know, that’s really the time where.

You know, we had the powerhouse of mlb .com, right? Baseball advanced media. And so as I mentioned, the different hats that I wore, there was the operational side and also being someone who is a big fan of innovation and technology and relevancy and all this really good stuff. I knew that this was something that was really important for us to do. We were not doing it inside our league offices. There were some specific focuses that our folks on the web for mlv .com, Baseball Advanced Media specifically, were really focused on. This was something that I really had to push for. And I really appreciate the support that I’ve received from our enterprise folks at Major League Baseball because they joined me in championing what this really would mean for all those stakeholders, but especially the fans. So there’s definitely some pushback at the beginning.

I know when we were also, really pushing an app. You know, this is a league that is very proud and has done some really good work on creating apps for our fans and for the game. So this was something new and we had, we were so excited that we had gotten the approval to go ahead and work with them, create this app and then the pandemic hit. So we were just like, so many different levels, including this. So we kind of had to go back to the drawing board after that once events were coming back.

And they came back super strong. So I would say there was definitely some pushback along the way. But again, the post -event experience, the information, the data we received, and for me, what’s the biggest hat that I wear, that I love to wear, is the fan experience and the fan engagement. It really took it to a completely different level where we were doing something that some of the other leagues hadn’t gotten to yet either. So again, and also like we learned from each other too. It wasn’t just, hey, we’re doing this. No one’s doing this, that type of thing.

But for me and for my team, it was great to be able to see the pluses of using this type of technologies on the ops side, on the PR side, on the sponsor fulfillment side, and the ultimate to me, which was the fan engagement, because it does allow for fans to completely you know, reach out and touch and feel a part of the all star experience. you know, the fan event, was an opportunity for everyone to celebrate. You know, it was the, not everyone can have a ticket to the all star game. Not everyone can be at the home run derby, the hottest ticket, but here at this fan event, you can get that full experience and it starts with the mobile app, you know, so that was, that was really, that was our,

That was our intention and that’s how we had that success with it. Yeah. And Megan, you had mentioned push notifications earlier. And so talk to us a little bit about maybe some of the fan behavior that you have experienced over time and, and understanding how some of the technologies have evolved with the app integration and you know, the overall comfort and usability of technology.

Definitely. It actually kind of makes me laugh because when we first started working together eight years ago, Jackie, you know, I think the MLB audience, especially at, you know, I think, I think baseball really was a little bit unique in this way eight years ago and that there is a sense of a big community of collectors of memorabilia, autographs, and they’re, they’re old school folks. You know, they’re not folks that necessarily have the latest and greatest iPhone in their hand. At least eight years ago, they were not.

And so there was this sensitivity around having a backup, right? Like we need some backup. Is it still just a stack of paper waivers? And we’re like, no, no, we gotta get away from that. But there was this sensitivity to understanding that, well, not everybody’s gonna have a phone on site. And what about teenagers or kids?

They might not have their own phone. So even in just the eight years that we’ve been around, it’s suddenly become everybody has a phone. And by the way, thank you to the pandemic because now at restaurants, people are being asked to scan a QR code for their menu. So, they definitely know how to scan a QR code on site now. So, it has been funny to see that shift. Just the assumptions that you can make about the general audience and their technological savviness, really. And now we really see, like, people expect event apps.

They expect an app for whatever they’re going to. So, that has been a pretty monumental shift and really kind of one of those rising tides, lifting everyone, right? Because everybody’s learning the same thing at the same time, being part of the general event going audience. So that’s been very helpful. With that comes complications and other considerations because then you have a more diverse group that’s using your mobile app. So you have to consider the audience that is now everybody.

But in terms of personalization, with how those people are engaging with the app, that’s really where the fun comes in. You have your ticket purchaser information, but that’s really only just the tip of the iceberg. And by now being able to correctly assume that everybody has an app in there or has a phone in their hands, rather, on site, you can start to cater that mobile app experience to whomever’s hand that phone is in at the moment. So in having kind of an in app, registration, you know, whether that be integrated with the event organizer single sign on, so that you’re minimizing the number of fields you’re collecting and making that really easy.

The intent is to leverage what the event organizer knows about the fan to create a better experience. So I mentioned sort of some examples earlier around, maybe you already know that they’re a particular fan of a particular team. So you don’t need to ask that again, that’s something that they offer up in the beginning.

 And now you tailor that experience. You serve up content based on what alumni legends are there with doing autographs that might be of the utmost interest to that particular fan. You might serve up information about, you know, directions to airports if you know that they’ve probably flown into this event rather than being a local fan. So really those personalizations can be anywhere from trying to target their passions to just targeting more

Useful utility from the app. So really there is just a wide variety of different journeys you can create based on the wide variety of audience that the mobile apps have these days. Sure, sure. And so with the three of us being no strangers to live events and the impending catastrophe that could happen and all the variables that we all have to consider with live events.

What are some of the practical strategies that you guys think about when implementing some of these, whether they’re location -based services or the mobile app integrations, or maybe some other considerations that folks should understand when organizing and introducing these technologies into a live event? I would say it’s, I’ve been privileged to work with some great collaborators. I think collaboration and communication is really important. Just let’s talk about signage. You know, like signage is a big part of the branding at our All -Star event. Great visual. I’m a very visual person. So if I see an infographic and I’m like, okay, first go to this here, go to the app, press this button, go there, make sure that you’ve completed the waiver.

So I think communication and one example of that is just signage and graphics, I think plays a really important role in the success. Megan talked about paper, our initial engagement was, hey, we’ve got reams of paper people here for waivers, completed waivers, like we need to get away from the papers. And we don’t ever wanna talk about papers again. But having that plan B, that backup plan, is really important and sometimes that calls for in the staffing world and again in the collaboration for the All -Star Fan Event that I oversaw, quite often we would work closely with the clubs, IT and enterprise folks. So we had, it was a true collaboration from beginning to end because they want a successful event too, right? These are stakeholders.

So they’re willing to put in that additional contact and work together to make sure that it’s successful all around. So I think communication and collaboration leading up to the event and during the event is really, really important. And then you mentioned, Jackie, you were talking about communication across departments and with your fans. I think that is one of the really foundational components of the mobile app is that ability to communicate with your audience in real time like you were not able to before. Things like schedule changes, right? So, an athlete’s running late for signatures and you can message the audience that is affected by that delay.

Emergency communication, you know, unfortunately, that’s a reality of live events that we need to prepare for. So suddenly, if you’re able to use things like targeted geofencing for certain messages, you’re able to get pretty granular and communicate with your audience for not so big video schedule changes to, you know, impending thunderstorms, take cover and beyond. Yeah, I mean, again, and that’s, you know, the various hats that we all wear, but you know, on the operational front, that’s so important for communications.

One of the things that I was sharing with Megan is that, you know, that the working and having our, our, our product was called the experience path. So working on the experience pass really brings together even before we arrived, it was a true collaboration of different departments within major league baseball because everyone wanted to, they knew the potential of it. They knew the success we’d had in every year we’d look to improve and enhance all around experience. So it was a true collaboration of departments and it was also helpful to them as a source of information. They can go onto there and see what information they may have. And even up until last year in Seattle for our All -Star event, there were other events happening outside of the fan event. And it was just like, you know what? We’ve got this audience.

Let them know also that this is where the red carpet show is going to be and that this is where the draft is going to be. And let’s take advantage of that. So it actually started to go out outside of the fan event and serve as a tool internally as well, as well as for our fan base. Excellent. And, and Megan, you, you would reference the we try not to dwell on this past too much, but the pandemic was obviously a major influence on all of our lives, but it did make an important movement in technology, both from a past technology and a future technology. And one that you had referenced was the QR code that was a fledgling and dying technology that couldn’t really find its moment for over 25 years until the pandemic.

But with that brought an onslaught of a change of behavior for everyone in the way of life and in how we interacted with the world. And I think from a live event or even a brand perspective, it allowed creatives and technology companies like ourselves to really show value in how marketers can leverage technologies like augmented reality to promote their brand awareness, their brand message, and still try to connect with the consumer despite not being allowed to host a live event, right?

And so I think to some degree, a positive byproduct of that experience allowed for certain technologies to take off. And we internally at MVP have always said that web -based AR was really the pandemic diamond that was raised from the pandemic or the technology from the pandemic in that, you know, augmented reality experiences driven through a QR code activation was such a seismic shift in the way brands could connect with their consumers. And so I’m curious to hear both of your thoughts in terms of how you think augmented reality can be woven into the mobile app experiences and how that is woven into live events and your purview on that.

Sure, I can start off with that because it really has and it’s come a long way. I think one of the first examples of really innovative AR that I remember hearing about was maybe it was just because I lived in Dallas at the time, but it was with the Cowboys Stadium had an AR photo opportunity and it got a lot of media attention and you could pose for a photo and then after the fact, it was one of the Cowboys Stadium players was superimposed on that photo. And it wasn’t just an overlay. I think it may have even been a video. So it really did look like you’re having an exclusive experience with Dak.

And that was sort of the first time I was like, wow, this is pretty powerful and can provide an exclusive feeling opportunity without having Dak Prescott come up into the stands for several hours to see all the fans. So that was kind of the first time I remember seeing a notable AR example. And it’s really just taken off from there I think it has provided, as you mentioned, James, more creative ways to engage with fans. So rather than just scan a QR code for a web -based experience or in -app experience, it has made that more of a creative process. And I think it’s forced some innovation because of the variety that’s now available with AR.

I think we’ve seen really cool AR activations from partners and clients of ours, whether that be pointing the mobile app towards the field itself. And then there’s an AR experience that pops up in your phone showing, you know, maybe it’s more educational around what is off sides or, you know, what happens in this particular play in football. So you’re capturing a new audience of fans that maybe need some help understanding rules in order to, you know, become an avid fan. Or we’ve seen some clients leverage this for partnership.

I think that’s probably the most of you know, widely used, option for AR we see is sponsors taking advantage of this. So whether that be, you know, pointing the phone up to the sky and then seeing the airline partner fly in, for an opportunity for a spin to win in the sky right then and there. so it just creates more of a, more of an engaging opportunity right there. but you know, we’ve also seen AR be used in utility of the app. you know, a few years ago,

We worked on a project for a big music festival to make AR wayfinding. So, you know, quite literally point your mobile app around and it would show you 200 yards this way is a restroom and this way at 658 yards. And so you were able to really help that fan on site navigate. So I think in the same way, a mobile app should be used, you know, first and foremost for utility and then second to enhance the experience.

AR is really just scratching the surface to do both of those things as well. Yeah, absolutely. And Jackie, I’m curious, you know, given your time, on the league side, how much of a sponsored or brand partnership involvement in these types of technologies or experiences that you’ve seen or have been involved with, if you could share some of those stories and experiences. Yeah, absolutely. I know that, But as you mentioned, sponsors are a really big part of our All -Star fan event. We’ve been lucky enough to have title sponsors, right? Title sponsor completely changes a lot of things, like in the most positive way. We’re able to support our sponsorship team on adding an incredible value to our title sponsors, specifically with our experience, besides the branding part of it.

It takes their mission to engage with fans and to, in our case, the last couple of years have been Capital One, you know, very active in the world of sports. We actually visited their activations during the Final Four the year before that.

But again, an opportunity for a sponsor like Capital One who is very aggressive in engaging with fans and connecting with fans just even that much more of an opportunity throughout all the different functions that we had through the mobile app, giveaways, communications, scheduling. They had their own footprint, which they had their own interactives, customization of t -shirts, just being able to even further amplify their messaging to fans to be a part of the Capital One experience and, you know, their ownership of the fan event during All -Star. So that, you know, is definitely was something that Capital One was very, very excited and very happy to be a part of, to be a title sponsor of the event and also ended up being a title sponsor of the actual mobile app.

Now, the challenge or the opportunity I’ll say, because I like to swap out those words, is that we also have a slew of other partners that are national partners of Major League Baseball, local partners. And so, for us it was an opportunity to get really creative on how we can also provide that experience to the other sponsors and how we can weave them throughout the experience pass program as well with notifications, call outs, opportunities for fans to win prizes, again scheduling information, so just a great tool all around but just adding that much more of a value to our sponsors that are the most important element for lots of business units at the league office.

Yeah. You know, and that’s, that’s a great example when you reference the capital one, because from a brand integration or sponsorship package, integrating or sort of having branding on the mobile app for the event, I’d imagine is a great three 60 or holistic sort of sponsorship package that that makes a lot of sense for a brand. And, they can have those sort of, experiential activations, you know, in the fan fest, as well as getting the awareness on the app and, you know, really tying all of that together. And I have to say, working with major league baseball and integrating certain, I call them fun widgets and the BAM app, you know, I think major league baseball does a great job of integrating specific touch points for key sponsors and brands within each of the team apps.

So you can get a different personalized experience and a brand message or a connected experience based on, you know, that that key strategy with the the partnership. So not only as a technologist, but as a fan, I’ve been able to take that from from that as well. So, Megan, as as obviously someone who also develops technology, there’s a lot of considerations we need to make when we build out our activations, whether It’s a range of age grouping on how we build our games, level of difficulties. There’s variables on height, abilities, maybe accessibility when it comes to ADA.

Can you talk to us from a development standpoint, some of the potential challenges or maybe UI, UX considerations that developers need to think about when they’re thinking about these app developments and talk to us about that experience? Of course.

Well, you really hit the nail on the head there. Obviously, the audience is diverse now that everybody has a phone in hand as we’ve been talking about. So, you know, I think the basics that are our responsibility as developers and providers of these platforms is to make sure we’re adhering to the latest accessibility guidelines for ADA compliance. That’s sort of a no -brainer.

But then, you know, for the entire audience, I think we owe it to them as developers to make sure that we’re capitalizing on. I always end up making up a word when I talk about this. I was telling this to Jackie earlier. I always end up trying to make intuitivity a word and it’s just not. But I really do feel like it’s our responsibility to ensure that everything about the apps that we’re building are intuitive and that we are counseling our clients to make sure that everything from the location of buttons on the navigational bar on the bottom is intuitive, right? Is the home on the left or is it on the right? Where are the FAQs? Where’s the map? We don’t want to make the users and the fans hunt for information that they need quickly.

So I think that is really our most important goalas an app developer is making sure that they’re easy to use. And so it’s really important to make sure that we’re looking at the UX and UI as a general fan and not somebody that’s in a mobile app CMS seven days a week and knows exactly where to find it for clicks in. So I would say that’s the most important thing to keep in mind as an app developer.

But then you talked a little bit about the audience earlier, James, and I think one thing that also came out of the pandemic is this idea that we really have an at -home fan that for a short time, luckily, was everybody. We were all at -home fans. And now we’re back to having on -site fans, but you still have that big audience of at -home fans. And so personalizing an app experience that’s not only for fans on -site, but for the fans that weren’t able to make it to the event, they’re still very much avid fans at home.

That’s really where some of those AR features, or enhanced personalization can really help bring the two audiences together and also help bridge the on -site experience with then what do you take away when you go home? So maybe you go on -site for the first day of a mega event, but then you’re watching it on TV or you continue to think about it and to be able to serve up a continued experience for the at -home fan is so important to continue to leverage, you know, brand awareness for your sponsors or a connection to your brand as the event organizer. so really ensuring that the personalization is not only for those fans that are, you know, on foot, your event, but also for those fans, once they’re back at home or, or once they were already at home.

Have you seen a major shift and or need slash desire to move away from traditional third party downloaded apps versus web -based or browser -based apps? And maybe there’s a company perspective that you guys have, strategy. Yeah. Yeah. No, it’s a, it’s a really good question. You know, I think it is something that we’re thinking about now just in terms again of making sure that everything is as intuitive as it can be to maximize downloads and maximize engagement with these fans.

You know, I think we mentioned earlier that because fan event apps are so ubiquitous, people do look for them. If you’re not on site at an event, you wouldn’t necessarily think to download an event app. So in some cases, it likely makes sense to make those same experiences, whether it be, you know, digital activations with sponsors or engagement with the event organizer themselves, a part of or an extension of, you know, maybe their year round evergreen app or an extension of their online presence. So I do think it’s our responsibility to cater to all of those different audiences with a seamless experience so that I could be an audience member in every single one of those audiences. I go on site to the event, but then I come home and I engage with the Red Sox game throughout the rest of the season. And then I’m on site for a World Series game, but now there’s off season and then draft comes up.

Like you have these cycles of fandom to stay in the sports space. And really there’s an opportunity to improve an experience at every single step of that cycle. Yeah, yeah, absolutely. I think it’s really smart for brands and organizations to really consider those out of event, tangential experiences to stay connected. And that’s something that we focus on and try to really extend that connection to the event and extend that memory, right?

Cause we’re all in the experience business at the end of the day. And you really want to capture that emotion behind the event and drive the positive intention behind the brand experience, behind the event. And so all of that. I don’t know if I had mentioned this earlier or throughout the webinar, but I do want to make sure that anyone that is in the audience, feel free to drop any questions into the chat here in the zoom. So if you have any questions that you’d like to ask, like to ask Jackie or Megan, please go ahead and I’ll read those off. but, I know that we’re, we’re sort of nearing time, but I, I wanted to get each of your perspectives on, you know, the state of the future and, and what are your thoughts on, I guess, mobile technology and what you anticipate, you know, some of the bigger impacts that it’s going to have on, on live events and, and.

what can organizers prepare to leverage those technologies in the future? Hey Megan, I’m going to start on this one. And there’s a little bit of kind of part of what you were just talking about a minute ago, which is how we reach fans that are not just onsite and present. And definitely the pandemic is something that started us thinking about this at Major League Baseball.

We were in a city and we were trying to say, okay, we’re gonna start events going. How do we do a 5k race but not have anyone actually running together? You know, we had we were trying to brainstorm we can have people from all over the world, you know, just logging in at the same time and we could run the race together. So again, I think, you know, the creativity that came out after that definitely continues to spark some of the conversations that goes on but I think what’s really important what I A lot of brands are working towards, and I would say Major League Baseball definitely from my experience there and the events that I worked on and led was the globalization of the game and connecting us all around the world. Those are things that we’ve been able to do. Like for example, on TikTok, my family’s from Ecuador and I’m fascinated by the TikTok. 

Content creators that are actually coming out of the Andes mountains and these little villages. And I’m like, holy cow, like how would I normally even capture anything like that unless I’m going to visit? So I think the globalization of the events and getting really creative and how we use technology to make that connection is something that’s really important and something that brands are working on right now and trying to figure out how exactly do we do that? Whether it’s, you know, with these different platforms right now or with.

just getting creative with partners on how exactly can we do that? How do we share this experience that’s going on, the memories that we’re creating? How do we share that with fans in Asia or in Latin America? We have huge baseball fans all over the world. Let’s connect with them because they would all would love to be at an all -star event, but we can’t get to it. So how do we make that connection? I think that’s something that…brands leagues are working with right now as part of their globalization of their brands. Real quick shout out to Ben. Ben is leaving the picture here, but thank you for joining, Ben. I’m sorry, Megan, go ahead. No, no, thanks for joining, Ben. I mean, what Jackie said is of course so important, you know, as the audience on site is only temporary, ensuring that the experience is not only reachable,

by the fans that are at home in the surrounding cities or states, but across the world. And then on the note of sort of emerging trends or advances, you know, I think that there’s a lot out there right now around AI, and that is likely something that we’ll continue to see, you know, as a mobile app platform and technology developer, as you probably feel the same way, James, I think we need to be prepared to integrate into the latest and greatest technologies and then be consultative for our clients on how to leverage those to not only be the new cool thing, but be the new cool thing that really enhances the fan experience or connection with the brand or improves the way that a fan arrives at and experiences the game or the event.

Because as we’ve sort of said throughout, you know, the features of a mobile app at a mega event that will be the most memorable are those that made the experience more seamless for them. Whether or not those are the ones that get the news articles written about them, you know, those are the ones that are sort of the unsung heroes.

So I think it’s a balance as a mobile app developer of both integrating with the newest and coolest flashiest technology, but then also leveraging those for utility sake. Yeah. Well, I think the future is bright because as someone that attends events, both professionally and personally, event apps have definitely improved over the years. Even just five, six years ago, they were so bad. But none out of the lead family of companies, of course. But I’ve experienced some conferences and trade shows with very embarrassing apps. We’re not going to name names there. But I do think it is a there’s a bright future for the live event app business for sure. Well, we certainly Megan.

Jackie, thank you so much for joining. We’d like to give our listeners an opportunity to connect with you thereafter. So any social platform that you’re comfortable or LinkedIn profile that you’d like to share. If not, there’s no pressure. But if just want to give you the platform here to provide your contact information, if any guests would like to reach out to you directly. Yeah, LinkedIn is probably best for me. I often get a lot of requests for for connections on there and speaking with. So I’m a big fan of talking with people and sharing my journey and learnings and advice and all that good stuff.

So that’s probably the best for me. Yeah, all I could say, I know that we’re both linked on the LinkedIn event. So that would probably be the easiest to get in touch and then route from there. Okay. Well, sounds good. Well, thank you everyone for another episode of the MVP interactive webinar and again, I can’t thank you both enough, Megan and Jackie. This was fascinating and I look forward to working with you guys in the future for sure. Awesome. Thank you so much. I appreciate it. Okay. Thanks so much, James. Thank you Jackie. Bye.

Webinar: Leveraging Mobile Technology in Mega Events


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