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ExactTarget's Connections 2012

Gold Stevie Award Winner 2012, Click to Enter The 2014 American Business Awards

Company: ExactTarget, Indianapolis, IN
Company Description: ExactTarget is a leading global provider of cross-channel, interactive marketing software-as-a-service (SaaS) solutions that empower organizations of all sizes to communicate with their customers through the interactive channels they use most – email, mobile, social media and websites. Headquartered in Indianapolis, ExactTarget employs more than 1,100 people around the world
Nomination Category: Live Event Awards Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Best Tradeshow or Convention

Nomination Title: ExactTarget's Connections 2012 Launches Inspired Marketing

The date on which this nominated production was presented:
October 16-18, 2012

Briefly describe the nominated event's objectives and how it met those objectives (up to 525 words):

As the fastest growing interactive marketing software as a service company (SaaS) in the world, ExactTarget understands that global marketers must harness the power of technology and interactive communications to generate truly personalized, relevant messages for their customers through email, mobile, social media and websites.

According to Forrester Research, U.S. marketers plan to increase spending on email, mobile and social media marketing to $15.7 billion by 2016. To help our customers learn the latest and best practices from marketing experts, ExactTarget hosts the world’s largest interactive marketing conference “Connections.”

For the past six years, Connections has helped the world’s top marketers from the world’s largest brands understand how to get the most from their marketing dollars. Through inspiration, education and entertainment, the three-day experience also provides a bold taste of the entire ExactTarget brand.

Connections is all about the attendee experience. Here’s what some of the leading marketers said about Connections:
• "Exact Target puts on an amazing conference. It is extremely well thought out. Everything, from the well labeled signage throughout the city, to the mid-day snacks, down to the orange flowers placed in the bathrooms was part of an enormous package deal. Nothing was overlooked. Well done.”

• “Connections successfully connects marketers from across the country by sharing real life examples of solutions. You leave with knowledge that enables you to move forward with actual solutions. This is something you don't get with other conferences.”

Connections is a large conference, but making a personal connection is also important to ExactTarget. To connect with attendees and give them personal attention, even down to the last detail, ExactTarget showed its Orange spirit by:

• Hosting a Client Listening Lounge – More than 250 clients and partners provided real-time feedback on products, Connections and ExactTarget overall.

• Coordinating “Industry Meet-Ups” allowing marketers from similar industries to share best practices, challenges and solutions.

• Hosting a special Marketing Leadership Summit for more than 120 C-level global executives to connect in an intimate setting and share their experiences, challenges and inspirations of leading global brands.

The entire social media response was amazing. ExactTarget tracked an average of 7 Tweets per person, resulting in more than 17,200 Twitter posts for the hashtag (#ET12). These Tweets generated nearly 36,000 impressions, and created a reach of more than four million.

How do we measure the success of Connections?  A Net Promoter Score (NPS) measures customer loyalty, satisfaction and the likelihood of an attendee to recommend Connections.  The 2012 event achieved a score of +54, once again crushing the industry tradeshow average of +38.

With 500 attendees in 2007, Connections grew to more than 4,000 attendees in 2012. But ExactTarget’s conference isn’t just the industry’s largest gathering of interactive marketers – it’s the No.1 destination for many marketers. Of the 4,000+ attendees, 56 percent did not attend another event in the past year –proving that Connections is where they go for marketing industry knowledge and expertise.

And they plan to come back. Nearly 80 percent of attendees are highly likely to attend Connections 2013, once again beating the industry average of 64 percent.

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• ExactTarget Events staff:  Elizabeth Gilstrap, Brian Mason, Amy Rost, Katie Bilyeu
• ExactTarget Design Team:  Fletch Fletcher, Katie Martin, Lindsay Siovaila, Dave Eckert, Elizabeth Kjeldson, Katie Snyder, Joshua Manns
• ExactTarget Video:  Jeff Rohrs, Tom Corey, Kyle Lacy, Daniel Incandela, Tony Mulinaro, Bo Dietrick
• ExactTarget Copywriters:  Stefanie Jansen, Devon McGinnis, Tara Stephens, Jennifer Rhine
• Photographer – Paul D’Andrea
• Graphic Design agency - Kristian Anderson + Associates, Indianapolis; Trendy Minds, Indianapolis