All posts by avillatoro

Announcing Sponsorship Webinar With Industry Heavyweights

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RaceHQTM Announces Sponsorship Webinar With Industry Heavyweights

Executives from Competitor Group, Inc. and AVIA to join panel

San Diego, CA – October 9, 2014  RaceHQTM, a first-of-its-kind cloud-based project management, collaboration and task management tool for participatory events, announced today its first webinar in the Managing the Millions of Details Webinar Series titled ‘Building a Successful Event Sponsorship Program’ on October 21, 2014 at 4PM EST. The webinar will feature industry expert panelists including John Smith, Senior Vice President, Competitor Group, Inc., and Cape Capener, Senior Vice President, AVIA.

RaceHQ’s Managing the Millions of Details Webinar Series was created to help race directors take their race to the next level by bringing together the industry’s top experts in their given field to provide perspective and knowledge on the hottest topics impacting the participatory event industry. ‘Building a Successful Event Sponsorship Program’ is the first in this series of highly interactive webinars that will be moderated by industry veteran Anton Villatoro, President & Co-Founder of RaceHQ.

“We are thrilled to host this panel of top industry experts and colleagues in the ongoing discussion on how to crack the nut on sponsorship,” said Anton Villatoro, President and Co-Founder of RaceHQ.  “Often the difference in profitability or whether or not a charitable event raises money for a cause comes down to sponsorships that create opportunity, meaning, and business”.

RaceHQ webinars are for event managers of small-, medium-, and large-sized events and includes a ‘Critical Success Factors’ one-pager, ’Your Road Map to Success’ info-graphic, and a free RaceHQ account. Webinar format will be a 30-minute panel discussion, followed by 15-minutes of Q&A. For more information or to register, visit racehq.com/webinar-sponsorship.

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About RaceHQ

RaceHQ.com is an online project management, collaboration and task management tool for participatory events. Developed specifically for event managers, RaceHQ incorporates a comprehensive set of features to more efficiently operate and execute events within budget every time. RaceHQ replaces the clipboard and yellow notepad by allowing race directors to easily take control of their events online using any device, ensuring nothing slips through the cracks.

Version 2.0 is just around the corner

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2.0

As a fellow race director, I know how it important it is to manage the millions of details without letting anything slip through the cracks. That’s why I wanted to personally invite you to check out RaceHQ, a first-of-its-kind online project management tool for event managers.

With Version 2.0 just around the corner, we are excited to introduce our new pricing plans. And it’s not just about the software. New content is being added to daily, weekly, and monthly to help take your race to the next level!

 

 

NEW Member Benefits include:

Project Management Tool
Comprehensive set of features include workflow templates, calendar integration, task management, and the ability to collaborate with your race crew using any device.

Online Webinars by Industry Experts
Exclusive access to monthly online webinars by industry experts on various topics that will help you take your race to the next level.

Virtual Round Tables with Peers
‘Seating’ at our interactive round-tables forums with other event managers – just like you – discussing heated topics and best-practices within their events.

Downloadable Templates
Access to downloadable templates, including our popular Milestone Template, Sponsorship Benefits Matrix Template, and Event Budget Template.

Not only this, but we also think you’ll really like our NEW Pricing Plans:

TOTALLY FREE.
No credit card, no commitment
Up to 5 members, Unlimited races

ADVANCED
$25/mo
10 members, Unlimited races

PROFESSIONAL
$50/mo
25 members, Unlimited races

WORLD-CLASS
$100/mo
50 members, Unlimited races

I have been in the trenches of event management for a long time. Formerly, I was Vice President of Operations for Competitor Group, Inc. creators of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon series. Before that, I co-owned and operated the Denver Marathon and served as Commissioner of the Pro Cycling Tour. I founded RaceHQ to solve many of the common organizational problems race directors, including myself, encounter while planning events.

We look forward to supporting you and your team in producing quality events with the many benefits of being a RaceHQ Member

-Anton Villatoro
President & Co-Founder

Scaling Your Event Business

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anton_villatoroFiguring out how you’re going to ‘pull it off’ for one event is a challenge in itself, but figuring out how you’re going to pull off multiple events in one year can be daunting. But, what about going from five events to sixteen events in one year? Such is the case for one of our customers that I had the opportunity to meet with recently.

As we met for a couple of days as part of their 2013 planning meetings, I could feel their pain. With the rapid expansion and the ever-increasing competitive landscape of our industry, it is becoming commonplace to go from one event to multiple events almost overnight. I think many forget that just one event – regardless of size – can be all-consuming let alone multiple events.

So, how do you go from five events to sixteen events in one year? The answer is: very carefully. Make one big mistake – or even over-promise and under-deliver – and your event series (and quite possibly your personal reputation as a competent event manager) could be scarred for life. Before you even contemplate expanding your current event portfolio, it is paramount you first establish standard operating procedures with the event(s) you have.

Standard operating procedures are simply your way of doing things, your formula for success, or your step-by-step ‘instruction manual’ for producing your totally amazing event. This is also what is commonly referred to as your ‘workflow’. It’s everything that needs to get done, when it needs to get done, and by whom it gets done. But knowing your workflow is not enough if it’s all stuck in your head. It’s imperative you document your workflow as part of your knowledge management (aka ‘hit by a bus’ safeguard) and to create a replicable process.

Once you have documented your workflow, then it becomes abundantly easier to add more events to your portfolio. You can now replicate your plan multiple times for your other events without having to ‘recreate the wheel’ from event-to-event or year-to-year. With each passing event, your plan becomes more-and-more refined thereby also increasing your ability to more easily scale your event business.

To assist you in this process (and to save you countless hours!), we are excited to introduce Race Templates into our software. Whether you’re an experienced Race Director or a first-time event manager, our Race Templates can get you started. Simply select, clone, and modify one of our templates to create your standard template with appropriate dates. Then, clone your standard template multiple times for your other events. The system will automatically backfill dates according to your new race date for all of your events…and voilà!!! You are now ready to execute against a well-detailed plan for all of your events.

We hope you will take advantage of this new feature. Please let us know if we can help.

Anton Villatoro, President & Co-Founder, RaceHQ

For The Price Of A Cup Of Coffee…

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This week we have launched our new pricing plans. As a former Race Director, I have been hyper sensitive in determining our pricing based on our value proposition. Yes, RaceHQ was developed for event managers to operate more efficiently and execute quality events within budget, proving built-in workflow and event expertise, standardization of best practices, knowledge management, and cross-event collaboration (…phew!). But the true value proposition is providing event managers with a tool to manage the cumbersome logistics so they can spend more time marketing and growing their events. Period.

The objective of our pricing is not to be another added expense. It is to help you be more efficient so you can spend less. When you are more efficient, you make better decisions. You can also get more done with fewer people. We are all guilty of getting into what I call ‘get ‘er done’  mode in the final stretch of event planning when all actual ‘planning’ goes out the window. Rapid-fire purchasing decisions are made – without comparative quotes or consideration for quality – because there’s a race to manage and hundreds or thousands of participants showing up in a few days. Then there’s replication of efforts or ‘recreating the wheel’ that happens every year because there are no repeatable, standardized operating procedures within the organization. Everything is stuck in someone’s head from the previous year and that someone is probably you or someone no longer with the organization, so lots of time is spent bringing ‘everyone up to speed’. All of this is a major distraction to actually marketing and growing your event.

To make sure we got it right, we hired third-party consulting group MarketSpring to conduct a comprehensive RaceHQ Usability and Pricing Study. The objective was to validate and gather input toward product usability and pricing through the collection, analysis, and reporting of unbiased data to substantiate product and pricing decisions. MarketSpring conducted a series of one-on-one interviews with both current users and prospective customers, as well as a quantitative online survey to over 150 event managers. We wanted to understand how organizations were using or would use the software to determine how best to structure our pricing to fit everyone’s needs. The challenge was to make pricing fit the smaller organizations with perhaps just one person putting on their first race all the way through to the larger enterprise organizations planning multiple very large-scale events with lots of moving parts.

What we’ve come up with is a pricing model that scales with you and your organization. Plans start at just $10/month for a single user planning their first race and go up from there as the organization adds more events and users to their account. All plans come with unlimited support and unlimited number of projects within a race. As your event grows (and becomes wildly successful!) and you invite more people to your race crew, the relative price for a single user drops to less than $3/month for our larger enterprise plan…or about the price of a cup of coffee.

Please let us know what you think. Our pricing goal is to make sure the software more than pays for itself through efficiencies brought to your organization while allowing our team to continue developing and supporting a great product!

-Anton Villatoro, President & Co-Founder, RaceHQ

Do Something Good

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Every time I wear my favorite t-shirt I get a lot of ‘I like your shirt’ comments. I always have to look down to remind myself which t-shirt I am actually wearing to read up-side-down ‘Dooo-Sooome-thing-Good’. Then I question whether I have actually done anything good at all that day besides wear a lousy t-shirt encouraging others to do something good. I’ve tried to think of all the reasons why people like my t-shirt so much and I truly believe it comes down to everyone just inherently wants to do something good. Good for others, good for their community, and good for them.

Doing “good” comes in a variety of flavors, but certainly one of the most popular of our time is participating in an event and raising millions upon millions of dollars for a cause near-and-dear to our hearts. I have always said, a person doesn’t simply roll out of bed one morning and think ‘I’m going to run a marathon!’. There are often much bigger motivators than oneself that drive individuals to dedicate themselves to the rigorous training required just to arrive on the starting line.

In the ‘busyness’ of everyone’s lives, people simply don’t have a lot of bandwidth to do something good that really moves the needle. Therefore, signing up for an event and raising money for a worthy cause is an excellent way people can really make a big difference – for others, their community, and themselves. And if you’re the person or team organizing the event, then you are doing something good by providing an incredible experience to your participants by which to raise money for a cause, giving back to your community in a meaningful way, and raising the self-confidence and self-esteem of your participants.

So as we ring in the New Year, think about how you want to position your event to do something good this year. There are many great models out there – which include both non-profit and for-profit events – that allow participants to raise money for a cause while creating a financially-sustainable event (yes, it’s ok for everyone to get paid). To name a few, there are wonderful charities like the Challenged Athletes Foundation that produce cause-related events and operate as a not-for-profit, there are events like the Boston Marathon that name a certain number of official charities and allocate bibs to these charities they in turn ‘sell’ for a minimum fundraise, then there are for-profit events like the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon series that may name one ‘Official Charity’ and that charity receives exclusive benefits and access to participants for their fundraising efforts.

Whichever model you choose, it’s important to remember that your City officials (i.e. the people that approve your permits…wink, wink!) don’t just care about the economic impact of your event but also the social impact to your community. So even as you and your team are the ones busting your humps to pull off the event or are often taking the financial risks associated with producing the event, be diligent in tracking and reporting back to City officials (and letting them take the credit for!) the social impact of your event such as: revitalization to a particular neighborhood, ways you are supporting youth programs, or number of dollars raised for an incredible cause. Mayors love, love, love good news and to be able to talk about it in the media puts a smile on everyone’s face. Like I said, everyone wants to ‘Do Something Good’.

If you need assistance thinking through how to position your event to do something good, don’t hesitate to reach out. We are here to help.

– Anton Villatoro, President & Co-Founder, RaceHQ