Each month we’ll be featuring an interview with a member of the Bogues Group team
Jaclynn Cross, Managing Partner
I’ve been working in the events industry for nearly 10 years. In addition to my role with Bogues Group, I serve as an Event Planner for the U.S. Green Building Council. I’ve planned events of varying formats and in domestic and international locations. I love music, singing, and dancing. I also enjoy reading when I can. When I’m not working, I enjoy spending time with my loved ones. I am a self-proclaimed foodie and love trying new restaurants. I’ve been on a mission to find my favorite champagne and have been conducting taste tests since the 2020 holiday season.
What are the most important skills you’ve learned to apply to events, and where/how did you learn them?
When I first entered the events industry, my primary focus was rooted in hospitality, customer service, and user experience. I measured success through feedback provided in surveys and intangible components like energy onsite. Now, almost 10 years in, I consider events to be a marketing and business development tool.
Yes, customer service is important. Yes, hospitality is equally important. And, absolutely, user experience is important. But when it’s all said and done, final expenses have been paid, and you’re looking ahead to the next event, measuring the return on investment is of paramount importance. What new leads, partnerships, or opportunities did the event generate? What tactics were used to extend the event’s lifecycle and engagement with your brand? The responses to these questions will help indicate the necessary adjustments to future programs and determine whether you should host the event again.
What’s your favorite brand or campaign and why?
Nike’s most recent campaign promoting their maternity line is so well-done, inspirational, and motivational. I mean, just seeing the pregnant woman lifting weights was so powerful. We tend to think of pregnant women as fragile, but there is so much strength in a woman bringing life into the world.
What advice would you give to a beginner entering the events industry?
COVID-19 highlighted the gaps in our planning processes and the importance of risk management. In the early stages of planning any event, consider contingency plans for nearly every component from staffing and support to how to incorporate a virtual component to expand your reach. Never stop learning and never get complacent. Events are not a one size fits all industry. Continue to push the bar and yourself to elevate your events and the overall experience.