LIVE from the Northwest Event Show with Sessionboard!

LIVE from the Northwest Event Show!

Join this fun interview with Lisa Schulteis, Founder of ElectraLime Marketing and Brian Tustin of Sessionboard.

Full Transcript

Lisa Schulteis (00:00):

Hey everybody, it’s Lisa Schulteis again, still on the floor here at Northwest Event Show, and I am here with the amazing Brian Tustin, with Sessionboard… I can’t even talk anymore. We’ve been on the floor for two days and I can’t talk anymore. So, and you guys have been in your booth for a couple of days chatting with everybody and, but I, everybody knows, right? Like, I love SessionBoard. We’ve actually only worked together for a few months. At this point, maybe two, even.

Brian Tustin (00:27):

Two. I was thinking like 6 to 8 weeks.

Lisa Schulteis (00:28):

It hasn’t been very long. We actually brought them on, a little bit late in the program… of when I would normally want to. But he also knows that, you know, for, for the, the Northwest Event Show, I love them. He also knows that for ElectraLime, I’m now referring them to all my clients. But, so what, tell me what’s new and exciting with Sessionboard, like? Well, let me tell people what it is first. Sure. So, and I’m not gonna let you tell them. So Sessionboard is this amazing software program that we have been using to manage all of our speakers, manage our agenda, manage all of our exhibitors. For this show in particular, I think we have 52 speakers, for two days, which is kind of crazy. We have about 200 exhibiting companies and then you figure every booth has X number of people, right. So exponential there. And so we’ve been using it to manage all of that content and data and organizational wise… and it just has made… You and I talked yesterday… it’s made our life easier. But what’s, what’s coming up with Sessionboard? Like, I haven’t had time to even read the really cool emails that I keep seeing come in my inbox, but what’s, what’s kind of coming up and, and what’s, you know, on the roadmap for you guys?

Brian Tustin (01:43):

Yeah. It’s, it is exciting. I’m gonna say that from a vague standpoint, what we’re working towards developing further is just the, a more elaborate and ability to collect content and be that content repository for shows. All the while still kind of developing and ensuring that the core functionality of collecting session submissions and managing speakers and exhibitors is still functional and growing. But the content, the management of the content is really what we’re excited about. In terms of kind of what’s next in growth. There’s also a couple things that we’re developing, which, which is gonna be really exciting on the organizational level. And what, I mean, what I mean by that is, let’s say there’s an association or a planner that um, organizes five events a year within the tool you are looking at your event view, but above that, or before that, there’s the organization view.

Brian Tustin (02:46):

And so the question is how are we utilizing all the data that we’re collecting on speakers and sessions at an organizational level so that essentially this, company association can have a repository of speakers that they’re able to see maybe, maybe ratings of how they did on their last session with us. And, and maybe it becomes this repository that organizers and planners can pick and choose from. And oh, we saw that Tyler spoke at our event two years ago, or two months ago. So that’s kind of like what we’re looking at more is how do we become this centralized source of truth for not just one show but shows continually over the course of years.

Lisa Schulteis (03:32):

Nice. Yeah, and you guys kind of started out really focused on kind of that speaker and session kind of focus initially and, and now you’ve kind of broadened out to, to include the exhibitor and organizational level on it, which I think was a really smart move. Because there’s just so much, you know, that you guys are able to track and, and make our lives easier with and Oh my gosh. Yeah. I really do wish we had started months ago with,

Brian Tustin (04:00):

Next year

Lisa Schulteis (04:01):

And yeah. Next year. Definitely. And, but it’s, it’s, it’s been, you know, I love going into the back end of it and, and being like, you know, what can I make it do for me? Right? That’s, I, I wanna go in there and I’m like, oh, I wonder if I can track this in it. Right. Or if I wonder if I can create a form to do this in it. And you know, most of the time the answer is yes. Right. Right. And the other times that it’s, no, it’s probably because I just haven’t figured it out yet. because I’m too tired and I’ve been sleep deprived for months. But you know, and it’s, you and I have joked right. This event’s gonna be over and he gets the Lisa list. Yes. Which is, you know, I forewarned him, he was like, oh, we’re excited.

Lisa Schulteis (04:41):

Tell us what’s on the Lisa list. I’m like, yeah, you don’t want to, you know, you never want to give me carte blanche. But it’s, it’s really a, a, a great tool to be able to just track all of this and manage all of this and, and you know, have that one stop even for, you know, not on my side, but for the exhibitors. Right, right. Or for the speakers to be able to come in and just know where they need to upload their content or, you know, for exhibitors to know, here’s my checklist of 20 items that I need before the show and it just, it centralizes all of the information. It’s so funny, I’ve had staff that have called me and they’re like, oh my gosh, we need to find this. I’m like, go log in. Right. Go back to it. It’s right there. Yeah. We don’t have to go find a file folder, an Excel spreadsheet or something like that. Right. So it’s, it’s been a fun, it’s been a very fast paced 60 days. Yeah. and I actually can’t wait to like stop, take a breath and actually get into it because I’m sure there’s so much more that I haven’t even played with at this point.

Brian Tustin (05:38):

You just get to go slow through it. But it is true originally going from managing speakers and seeing that need in the industry, but then also seeing how it parallels to exhibitors and sponsors. It’s very similar in terms of the general idea that we need to collect information and assets for all of these types of people that are participating in the event to make it successful. And not just collect, but we need them to do things. Right. Right. Like one of my favorite little things that was part of your exhibitor portal was booking the hotel room. And all I had to do was click on that and it took me to the hotel block. That was at the Sheraton and I didn’t have to go search for that. And then I booked my hotel, came back, marked it as complete, and then moved on to the next thing.

Lisa Schulteis (06:23):

Right. And it was, I think it was kind of fun for you too. I was giving you trouble.

Brian Tustin (06:27):

Yeah. It’s great

Lisa Schulteis (06:27):

Because, you know, he works for the company <laugh> and he would email me and he’d be like, Hey, where do I find this? Which was amazing. I love that I knew the answer and that you didn’t.

Brian Tustin (06:38):

Yes. It’s so good

Lisa Schulteis (06:38):

I think it was great because you actually, it gave you the opportunity to be, to experience it as an exhibitor. To give you kind of a, a different viewpoint on it which was great.

Brian Tustin (06:48):

A completely different viewpoint

Lisa Schulteis (06:48):

You know, I think back and I was like, gosh, how did we even start this conversation? And, and I think it was probably back at IMEX.

Brian Tustin (06:57):


Lisa Schulteis (06:57):

Yeah. Um, because I had a client that we just did 2200 poster sessions for them and we were looking for <laugh>. Yeah. Yeah. We were looking for a better solution. <laugh>, you’re right. For what than what we were using. Just again, to streamline it, right. For people to be able to upload their sessions, upload their posters, upload their content, and for us not to have to manually manage 2200 posters, it’s a lot

Brian Tustin (07:24):

Right. It is a lot.

Lisa Schulteis (07:25):

That’s a lot of content and a lot of sessions and a lot of speakers. So, it’s, it’s been a fun journey kind of looking at this and, and having this experience and then, you know, literally you asked me like, what was it about sessionboard? I was like, well, you know, that made, you know, the Northwest Event Show decide to do it. And I was like, well, I just told Stuart that we were going to use it

Brian Tustin (07:44):

Yeah. It’s not a negotiation. Yeah. This is it.

Lisa Schulteis (07:47):

It was a fun conversation, but it’s, it’s been a fun journey and, and you know, I can’t wait to keep working with you guys and, and on multiple clients and, and different things because I think, you know, I I was just talking with GetRegistered about this as well, you know, you guys have done a really nice job of intentionally staying in the silo Right. Not venturing out of it. A very strategic move and I think it’s a very smart move and you know, it makes you guys really, really good at what you do.

Brian Tustin (08:17):

Yeah. Yeah. We that’s, that’s us. And we know it and it’s like, it’s kind of nice too because people will say, well, do you do this? And it’s like, Nope, nope, nope. It’s not even like, uh, we could, it’s like nope.

Lisa Schulteis (08:28):

And I think a lot of software companies, that’s where the danger zone is, right? Because, you know, I even remember when I was, you know, first growing, my business is 14 years old and when I was first growing my business, people would call me and they’re like, oh, you know, can you do this? Can you do that? And I’m like, oh yeah, sure. Right. And I’d hang up the phone and what’s the next thing I do? I’m googling like, how do I do this? Right. And that’s not necessarily the smartest way to build your business. Sure. So, yeah, I’m glad that you guys have really kind of stayed in the silo, so

Brian Tustin (08:58):

Yeah. Well we’re glad to hear that. It’s been really awesome using the tool. And then even hearing feedback from everyone that has used the tool, that it’s just been a real delight and that it’s easy. It’s like, it’s simple. It’s, I think there’s a lot of platforms out there that are, they’re really powerful, but it’s complicated to look at. Right? Right. And thinking about the user’s experience we wanted, we want it to be a tool that is easy to approach and it’s not scary to come back to. Right, right. Like the first time using something is like, whoa, that was so scary. And it’s like, I, I don’t understand it. So it makes it hard to come back to it. Right. But when the tool or the platform is easy to use, the first go around it’s incur. It’s like, oh, that wasn’t so bad. It’s easy to come back to I know what to, I know where to go and that sort of thing. Perfect. It’s been great. Yeah.

Lisa Schulteis (09:46):

Thank you. Yeah. Not only for this, this has been great, but thank you for all the support over the last couple of months. You know, it’s totally, I love things when I start working with people and we start working together and it’s like we’re working together in business and then we get done and we’re like, yeah, no, we’re friends. Right? Yeah. So, absolutely, it’s, it’s been a great journey and, but thanks for taking the time and if you guys want to learn more about Session Board, you can ask me, you can ask him. I love the tool and, hopefully you’ll take a moment to look at it because it really will streamline things and just make your life easier. So thanks everybody. We’ll see you soon.


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