Tuesday Buzz: The Front-Row Blues

Why do conference attendees avoid sitting in the front row? The reasons may say something important about your event. Also: One company’s clever strategy to get in on the Super Bowl action.

Getting people to sit in the front row of an event session is really, really hard.

Yet, if you’re talking about a popular concert or sports event, as Julius Solaris of the Event Manager Blog notes, people are raring to get up front. What gives?

Solaris suggests a variety of reasons, including indifference to the speaker or topic, concerns about aggressive salespeople, or a general fear of public speaking. And none of those problems has anything to do with the seating itself.

“We need to fix the front-row issue at conferences, and seating has nothing to do about it,” he writes. “Are we creating events people want to attend? Are we planning sessions attendees can’t wait to sit on the front row for? Are we creating excitement, or are we scaring people away?”

Check out Solaris’ post for insights on how to fix the disparity.

The Anti-Ad

Some viewers got an eyeful out of an oddball ad created by the jokesters at Cards Against Humanity. Because potatoes have a lot of eyes.

See, the folks who make the card game created a fake Super Bowl ad, featuring a potato with the word “advertisement” written on it, then told people they wasted millions of dollars on the ad.

“While we succeeded creatively, the advertisement showed a disappointing return on investment ($0), and we are now going out of business,” the company wrote in a tongue-in-cheek Medium post.

It didn’t go out of business, and the avant-garde work never actually aired with the Super Bowl—just on local Chicago television during the pregame festivities. But merely saying it aired during the Super Bowl, with a parody postmortem, has proved a massive success story for Cards Against Humanity—thus far, the potato has received nearly a quarter-million views on YouTube.

Fake it until you make it, apparently.

A necessary fix. Google’s project for speeding up mobile pages, known as AMP, has turned off some publishers because of its tendency to create an extra URL for every story. But the company just announced a fix for that. It’s not perfect, but it’s getting there.

Beyond lists. The new note-taking app Milanote combines the best features of Evernote, Pinterest, and Trello into an incredibly creative result.

Worth a gander. The newly released NGO Online Technology Report is here—check the site for a few great infographics.


Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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