Why Forbes Produces Events at Venues Verified by Social Tables

Cathi Culbertson knows a thing or two about event logistics. As Vice President of Event Marketing & Conferences for Forbes in New York City, she manages a team that produces over 200 unique programs a year, meaning her time is an invaluable resource.

Culbertson and her team began using Social Tables in 2013. A date she wishes she could roll back. "Before Social Tables, I did everything in an Excel sheet. Diagramming was done by designating each cell as a 5x5 area. We would waste hours figuring out something as simple as table setting."

In need of a time-saving, accurate diagramming solution, Culbertson turned to Social Tables. An early test run of the software saved her team from a would-be disaster: "After inheriting a multi-city touring series from an outside firm, my team deployed to review each of the contracted spaces. Upon arrival in San Francisco, we realized the diagram the venue assured us was possible didn't add up. I had my team map out the room in Social Tables, which confirmed my fear that the venue had oversold its capabilities." As a result, Forbes moved their event into an alternative space in the hotel.

"Now, when my team is considering a venue, I encourage them to double check the accuracy of the marketing claims with Social Tables."

Cathi Culbertson, Vice President of Event Marketing & Conferences, Forbes

As we spoke, Culbertson and her team were in the process of planning an event in Chicago, where Forbes is using Social Tables to plan programming at the J.W. Marriott. "We have each floor broken down, and have diagrammed each individual space on Social Tables. From the location of charging stations to where the mic runners will be standing. We throw everything but the kitchen sink at Social Tables." She laughed and, upon reflection said, "The only thing I wish I could do on the software but can't, is to show where each water bottle is to be placed on stage."

While they can't do everything (yet), Social Tables prides themselves on reacting to customer feedback. When Forbes realized they needed a table style that was not offered in the software, Culbertson reached out to the team.

"We needed a crescent round option, and quickly it was done. The Social Tables team does an amazing job of listening to our needs by suggesting alternate options or creating new features, and they do it in the most pleasant manner."

Cathi Culbertson, Vice President of Event Marketing & Conferences, Forbes

You had a good run, Excel, but Social Tables will take it from here.

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