If you have ever attended one of our Dimensional Insight booths at a tradeshow or joined us at the annual Dimensional Insight Users Conference (DIUC), you probably had the chance to speak with our Events Manager, Alison Nicoli. Ally is 100% committed to ensuring all of our events go as smoothly as possible. From scheduling, to setting up monitors for presentations, to speaking to clients, to traveling, and more, Ally’s dedication has become the heart of our successful events.
In today’s employee spotlight, we give you an inside look at what it’s like to be an events manager. With memories of how she first began her career here, Ally shares her experience working at Dimensional Insight and what you can find her doing when she’s not in the office.
What is your role at Dimensional Insight, and what responsibilities does your role entail?
I am the events manager, and I work in the marketing department. Most of my responsibilities include the logistics of events, and the marketing aspects leading up to those events. That includes email campaigns and trying to figure out the best way to drive traffic to an event in order to get the most out of it. We’re also a small marketing department, so one of the best things about working at Dimensional Insight is that we get to experience all aspects of marketing even though we have a specific role.
Basically, my job is broken up into two different categories: I focus on trade shows, which is trying to get as many prospects to come in contact with us. Those events are typically bigger, where we have a booth. At those, I’m usually going there early and setting up the booth. Then we have more customer-focused events like our big users conference, which was held in Boston this year. We try and get in touch with as many customers as possible for training and to update them on what the “latest and greatest” is here with our products and applications.
As events manager, what is one thing about your job that people may be surprised about?
So, I think the thing that most people are surprised about is that when you hear “events manager,” people typically don’t think of a technology events manager. “Events manager” could mean catering and a lot of fun planning. But when it comes to working at a technology company, people don’t really understand the difficulty of logistics behind it – especially from an AV standpoint. I am sitting down at the computer, trying to figure out the wiring and where our monitors are going to be set up. So, it’s not necessarily just the fun catering and that kind of stuff. A lot of people think, “Oh, you’re just placing orders,” but it’s not just about planning the actual event. It’s about what you’re going to get out of the event so that you can come back and say, “Okay, was this successful, and how is this going to make our business better?”
What are the most challenging and most rewarding aspects of planning events?
I would say the most challenging part about planning the events is that it’s critical to start planning almost a year in advance. However, you don’t really know everything that is going to happen up until a few weeks before. When planning events, a lot of it has to do with who’s going to attend the event, and a lot of the times, you do not receive an attendee list (if at all) until 4-6 weeks before the event. So that means all year you’re planning an event, and once we find out who’s actually going, we have to make sure that everything we’ve done is going to be applicable to who’s going. It’s a last-minute fire drill because you want to try and do everything in advance, and you actually end up not really being able to. Definitely the most rewarding part is how we would determine the success of an event. Nothing’s better than the feeling of coming home after a long week of traveling and hardly any sleep, and knowing that we actually did have a lot of meaningful conversations with prospects and hit our numbers in terms of demos. So, I would say the most rewarding part is coming back and feeling like the event was worth our time.
How long have you worked at Dimensional Insight, and how did your career here begin?
I started working here as an intern the summer going into senior year of college. I basically did a lot of blog writing, a lot of spreadsheet work, and I was working on a lot of email campaigns. I continued doing that as my job through college, with my classes being Tuesdays and Thursdays. Then in December, I was asked if I wanted a full-time job, and I was super excited. I said yes! It was pretty unreal to be able to have that kind of security going into the end of my senior year. I continued to work until graduation, I went to Ireland for a week, and then I immediately started. I was a marketing specialist, and I did that for two and a half years. Then after that, I became the marketing events manager, and started taking on more. It’s been four years now!
What are your favorite types of events to plan? Are there any Dimensional Insight events that you always look forward to?
My favorite event to plan for Dimensional Insight is our users conference, which just took place in August, called DIUC19. The reason I like to plan our users conference compared to a prospect show is because it’s nice to get to know our customers that I haven’t met before. It’s also nice to see familiar faces each year, see how they use our product, and how they’re using it to better their own business. I like it because it’s not as much pressure to bring on new clients. It’s a lot more relaxed in my point of view. We get to plan a really fun off-site event, where this year we went to Top of The Hub. It was nice because although we’re from the Boston area, and we may have seen the city from a nice point of view before, just to see the smiles and “oohh’s and aahh’s” from all of our customers (having almost a 360-degree view of the city at night, lit up) was a really cool experience.
When you’re not in the office, how do you like to spend your time?
When I’m not in the office, I have three dogs. They’re all rescues, and they’re all different shapes and sizes. Usually each weekend, I’ll go up to my family’s cottage and we’ll go hiking a lot. I also like to flip furniture. I like to go to yard sales and take old bureaus and refurbish them. I’ve actually sold a lot of my stuff, which is really cool, so I like to do that on the weekends.
Thanks Ally! Want to meet the rest of our team? Find some of our other employee profiles here:
- COVID-19 in Children and Young Adults Part 2: Teenagers and Young Adults - October 19, 2020
- Reflections on the Virtual St. Jude Walk/Run Boston 2020 - October 1, 2020
- COVID-19 in Children and Young Adults Part 1: Infants and Children - September 24, 2020