Hardcastle and Holsinger Leading Breakout at SISO Summer Conference

Kimberly Hardcastle-Geddes, president of mdg and Ken Holsinger, SVP of Strategy at Freeman are leading a breakout session at the SISO Summer Conference. Session details are below and registration is available on the SISO website.

Wednesday, August 10
3:15pm – 4:00pm CT
Oklahoma City Convention Center
Oklahoma City, OK

Breakout: Event Industry Data, Trends and Insights, Version 2.0
Back by popular demand and fueled by Freeman’s ongoing industry research, Hardcastle and Holsinger will present 10 of the hottest trends that are impacting event organizers. This high-level briefing is a curation of data covering attendee and exhibitor sentiment, changes in consumer and societal behaviors that will help shine a light on the future of live events, and strategies for operationalizing the insights shared. From inflationary pressures (and how to offset them) to changes in registration pacing and verification rates to the impact the “great reshuffle” is having on direct marketing efforts and more, this information-rich presentation will provide critical information to help inform your next event’s planning, budgeting and promotional efforts.

kimberly hardcastle-geddes

Kimberly Hardcastle-Geddes
As president and chief marketing strategist of mdg, the nation’s leading marketing and public relations agency specializing in audience acquisition, Hardcastle-Geddes and her team provide solutions that increase attendance and exhibitor participation for live and online events. Kimberly is an IAEE Krakoff Leaders Institute alumna, a columnist for PCMA’s Convene magazine and a frequent presenter of industry seminars on strategic marketing planning.

ken holsinger

Ken Holsinger
Ken has over 25 years of experience in technology, media and event production as a lead executive, consultant and speaker. He currently leads the Data Practice for Freeman, bringing together teams that are building innovative data tools for integration and business intelligence with data science, consulting, research and industry benchmarking. Ken has been named on multiple hardware, software and process patents and is a frequent presenter on numerous topics in the events, technology and data science space. Ken is also actively involved in his local community in Boise, Idaho as a startup mentor and tech workforce development leader.

mdg Expands Research and Data Capabilities

WASHINGTON, D.C. — mdg, A Freeman Company, has launched a new agency division dedicated to research, data and insights as part of its ongoing commitment to helping association and event clients evolve from legacy-based to data-driven operating models. This newly-formed department consists of data strategists, scientists and analysts as well as experts specializing in the collection and evaluation of market research and intelligence. The mission of the team is to help clients capitalize on advances in technology to reach new audiences and create more personal and human customer journeys — from marketing campaigns to meaningful experiences and engagement opportunities.  

mdg President Kimberly Hardcastle commented, “Most professionals in our industry are excited about what data is making possible — the ability to achieve personalization at scale, accurately predict performance, lower acquisition costs, increase conversion rates, expand reach and more. Unfortunately, their enthusiasm is often dampened with the realization that their organizations are underequipped to fully seize the opportunities and maximize the power of personalization. That’s the gap this team will fill.” 

The new department will be led by organizational strategy expert Annie Malone and roll up under mdg Vice President Shauna Peters, who will work in close collaboration with Erin Lee, Vice President of Digital Strategy, and Ken Holsinger, Freeman’s Senior Vice President of Strategy. Industry veteran and former Exhibit Surveys, Inc. executive Ian Sequeira and his team of research and measurement experts will integrate into the new division, providing benchmarking data, quantitative knowledge and program-specific research and analytics expertise. They will also continue supporting the ongoing industry research backed by Freeman. 

“Prior to the pandemic, executives within our industry considered data-driven transformation as an aspirational goal. In this new business environment, there is a heightened sense of urgency to accelerate the pace of change and get serious about using data to increase revenue, engagement and profitability. I’m excited to serve in a role where I can help position our clients to win,” stated Peters. 

Peters also noted that the team has already developed a proven data gap analysis product and market share/sizing model that will serve as the foundation for customized audience development.

For more information about mdg and its services, visit mdg.agency

About mdg
mdg, A Freeman Company, is a strategy-driven agency with a 45-year track record of delivering results. Made up of marketing researchers and strategists, digital and interactive media experts, event and association management specialists, data analysts and a robust creative team, the 90-person agency offers complete marketing solutions to association, event and corporate clients.

About Freeman
Freeman is the world’s leading live event and brand experience company. We help our clients create and deliver immersive digital and live experiences for their most important audiences. Through comprehensive offerings including strategy, experience design, and digital as well as AV and event tech, Freeman helps increase audience engagement and drive business results. What makes us different is our collaborative culture, intuitive knowledge, global perspective, and personalized approach, which we’ve gained from more than 90 years as an industry leader. For more information, please visit Freeman.com.

Time to Fine-Tune Your Values Proposition

During the pandemic, it became clear that personal values — shaped by education and income levels, age, geography, cultural considerations, the media, political preferences, and religion, to name a few — were having far greater influence on our audiences’ likelihood to return to events than anything we were doing or saying as a collective industry. PCMA Convene featured mdg’s advice on how organizations should define their brands, operationalize best practices and tell their stories in relation to their audience’s values.

mdg Director of Content Featured Speaker at AAR

mdg, director of content Christine Johnson will take the stage at Lippman Connects Attendee Acquisition Roundtable on July 28. Session details are below and registration is available on the Lippman Connects website.

Thursday, July 28
8:00am – 4:30pm CT
Hyatt Regency McCormick Place
Chicago, IL

christine johnson

Harnessing the Power of Content to Drive Event Attendance

Event marketers are no strangers to content — our events are launching pads for new ideas, new innovations and new connections to thought leaders. Unfortunately, however, event marketers don’t always harness the full power of  content to generate leads, drive event attendance and keep audiences engaged throughout the show cycle. In this session, you’ll learn:

  • How to set and measure objectives for marketing content.
  • Who should be responsible for content within your organization.
  • What makes good content, including tips for content creation.
  • How to simplify and streamline content production and promotion.

National Restaurant Association Show Reunites Foodservice Industry

mdg partnered with the National Restaurant Association and Winsight LLC to market the National Restaurant Association Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show 2022. Reuniting the foodservice industry for the first time since 2019, the largest industry event focused on foodservice technology innovations, unique ingredients and emerging restaurant trends attracted over 51,0000 attendees. More than 1,800 exhibitors filled nearly 600,000 net square feet, of which about 30% were new exhibitors. In addition and despite travel restrictions, the Show also matched 2019 international registration, with over 110 countries represented. More than 100 sessions and workshops explored topics like culinary insights, operations solutions, technology strategies, wellness, workforce development and more.


“The 2022 Show was one of the most anticipated events of the year and after three long years, we couldn’t wait to bring the foodservice community back together to celebrate the advancements that drove the industry forward,” said Tom Cindric, President of Winsight Exhibitions. He added, “We’ve really seen this year how important it is to have mdg as a partner. The Show wouldn’t have been as successful as it was without them. ”