Event Peeps | Podcast

Hosted by the editors of Event Marketer magazine.

Welcome to Event Peeps, the podcast for creators of the brand experience. Listen in as we explore the experiential marketing discipline through the people, the playbooks, the ideas, and the strategies that are inspiring event campaigns and driving growth.

Episode 14: The Evolving Music Festival Landscape, with Pavan Pardasani of TAO Hospitality Group

In this episode, we explore the vast and evolving experiential landscape around music festivals with Pavan Pardasani, cmo of TAO Hospitality Group, which activates the exclusive Desert Nights after-hours experience during Coachella, as well as other pop-ups at festivals across the country. Plus: we serve up festival experiential activation tips from Zev Norotsky, founder and ceo of marketing incubator ENTER, our partner on this episode. Grab your best fringe and listen along.


Episode 13: Cultivating Longevity in Your Team and Career, with Cyndie Wang of HPE

Building a team from scratch is no easy task, but Cyndie Wang took on the challenge when she started with Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) in 2015. Eight years later, as vp-global sponsorships and brand experience, she is reaping the benefits of establishing a culture of trust, ownership, transparency and authenticity, as her team has remained intact and continues to grow. In this episode, we explore career, b-to-b events, measurement and tech trends.


Episode 12: Passion Projects—My How-to Book on Events, with Sara Gorlick of Rakuten

The events industry comes with its own unique set of challenges, but it’s always changing, and that’s what excites this episode’s guest, Sara Gorlick, vp-events at Rakuten. Celebrating the one-year anniversary of “Lucky Boxcutter,” her how-to book for aspiring event planners, she reflects on her biggest professional lessons and successes and shares the key insights, measurement tools and trends she’s gathered from her career.


Episode 11: Taking Pride in Employee Events, with Roger Mahusay of T-Mobile

Roger Mahusay, associate events manager at T-Mobile, was featured as part of this year’s Experiential in Color + Pride in Events program, which shines a spotlight on experience builders who are a part of, and identify with, the BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ communities. Building off his Pride in Events profile, Mahusay delves deeper into his unconventional career journey and shares how he found his voice to succeed in his role at T-Mobile, planning employee events and managing performance recognition programs.


Episode 10: The Power of Fan Conventions, with Lauren Collins of AMC Networks

Brands that bring popular IP to life at fan conventions face the highest level of scrutiny from con-goers, who expect interactive, fan-first experiences that provide moments of surprise and delight, but never stray from “canon.” Lauren Collins, vp-promotions, events and experiences at AMC Networks, shares her perspective on the evolution of pop culture fan cons, how the network activated at San Diego Comic-Con this year and superfan trends she’s watching.


Episode 9: Launch Stories—Creating an Event for an Industry, with Jessica Blake of Confluent

Creating an event for the industry, as opposed to only your customers, is a power move that requires a nuanced approach. In this episode, we sit down with Jessica Blake, senior director-global strategic events at Confluent, to talk ‘year two’ event planning strategies, the challenges and benefits of hosting an event for an industry as opposed to your users, and why listening is the most important tool to earn the respect of an evolving community.


Episode 8: Standing with the Queer Community in Turbulent Times, with Kate Wolff and Arya Davachi of Do the WeRQ

Alongside Arya Davachi and Kate Wolff of Do the WeRQ, we explore the state of marketing to the queer community in light of recent controversies, why DEI “amateur hour” is over for brands, how event profs can use subtle “winks and nods” to the community in their events and why it’s OK to make mistakes if you’re willing to learn from them.


Episode 7: Events and the Sober-curious Movement, with Jim Gunning of Best Day Brewing 

Jim Gunning, cmo at non-alcoholic beer brand Best Day Brewing, weighs in on why the sober-curious movement has seen such rapid growth and how it’s impacting events. He also offers a look at how Best Day’s grassroots sampling strategy and approach to sports sponsorship is boosting brand awareness and busting misconceptions about the so-called lackluster taste of non-alcoholic beers.


Episode 6: The Best of SXSW and What’s Next, with Dan Preiss of Dell Technologies

We revisit the 10-day SXSW Conference & Festivals to pick out the most notable trends and cool experiences having an impact on experiential this year. Dan Preiss, vp-experiential marketing at Dell Technologies, joins this episode to walk us through the brand’s SXSW activation and discuss how this year’s content-focused approach differed from past events.


Episode 5: The Experiential Principles of Employee Engagement, with Marrah Thomas of Delta Air Lines

Marrah Thomas, senior manager of global internal events and conferences at Delta Air Lines, helps break down what’s changing and what’s trending in employee engagement and how internal event marketing roles are evolving.


Episode 4: Superfans, Collaborations and Talent, with Spencer Sherman of FaZe Clan

Spencer Sherman, vp-live content and events at esports and entertainment brand, FaZe Clan, and Nick Garrett, director at GDX Studios, discuss building a superfan base, the key ingredients of an authentic influencer event experience, and best practices for partnerships and talent relations.


Episode 3: What You Need to Know About Sustainability in 2023, with Marley Finnegan of Purpose

Our guest Marley Finnegan, founder of sustainability-focused event firms Purpose Sustainability Strategy and Purpose Net Zero, sheds light on events’ environmental impact and strategies that can mitigate emissions and reduce waste. She also offers insight into what the SEC’s proposed climate risk disclosure rule means for events and which trends event professionals should note for 2023.


Episode 2: Passion Projects—I Built a Nonprofit, with Talib Abdullahi of Tito’s Handmade Vodka

In this episode, we explore the passion projects event marketers are working on outside of their hectic schedules with Talib Abdullahi, national event coordinator at Tito’s Handmade Vodka, founder of Black History Bike Ride. 


Episode 1: Mid-year Event Marketing Industry Pulse Check, with Erin McElroy of IBM

In our inaugural episode of the Event Peeps podcast, we discuss how the industry is doing and feeling in a mid-year update on the back-to-live with Erin McElroy, head of innovation for global events within IBM’s event and experience marketing group.

From the Archives

Episode: Embracing the Possibilities in a New Era for Experiential, with Kim Aimi of Visa

In this archival episode of Event Marketer’s limited podcast series “Take a Walk with an Executive,” we revisit our conversation with Kim Aimi, senior director-innovative activations at Visa, about new developments across the landscape, where the opportunity lies, where the industry can innovate, and how to embrace technology better.


Episode: Discussing Steal-worthy Experiential Marketing Ideas, with Mahiri Wise of Google Cloud

In this archival episode of Event Marketer’s limited podcast series “Take a Walk with an Executive,” we revisit our conversation with Mahiri Wise, product manager-Cloud product operations at Google, about hybrid events, screen fatigue (remember when?), and clever tactics being executed across the experiential marketing industry. Enjoy the look back. 


Episode: The Science of Celebrating Success, with Helen Stoddard (formerly Twitter)

In this archival episode of Event Marketer’s limited podcast series “Take a Walk with an Executive,” we revisit our conversation with Helen Stoddard, then head of global events at Twitter, about wins, losses, and establishing your game face amid great uncertainty. Enjoy the look back.

Have an idea for an episode? Let us know. To sponsor an episode and feature your company on an episode page, reach out to Alex Chung, [email protected].

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