Mandy Darnell, Director of Event and Field Marketing, joined Starburst in March of 2020. With a background in events, she was one of the startup’s first marketing employees.
Charged with creating and scaling Starburst’s event programming, Mandy’s world was soon turned upside down. The pandemic halted all in-person engagements, which were a core part of Starburst’s event strategy.
The team quickly adapted and invested in a virtual platform—only to face a full year of clunky events, spotty service, and painfully slow turnaround times.
Keep reading to learn how Starburst pivoted once again and finally found its footing with Goldcast.
Starburst is the analytics engine for the data mesh. They unlock the value of distributed data by making it fast and easy to access, no matter where it lives. Starburst queries data across any database, making it instantly actionable for data-driven organizations. With Starburst, teams can lower the total cost of their infrastructure and analytics investments, prevent vendor lock-in, and use the existing tools that work for their business. Trusted by companies like Comcast, FINRA, and Condé Nast, Starburst helps companies make better decisions faster on all data.
Software/Technology | ~400 employees
Starburst hosts over 50 events per year. Mandy started the events program from scratch in 2020 when there were only ~40 total employees. Now, the company boasts over 400 employees and a full field and event marketing program.
Prior to Goldcast, they were using two separate platforms for virtual events across conferences and executive briefings. They were able to consolidate all of their events into a single, unified platform.
February 9-10, 2022 | 5,700+ registrants | 2,500+ attendees
Datanova is a two-day virtual summit packed with unique and educational content for data leaders and data practitioners alike. The event is open to current Starburst customers and curious data-enthusiasts alike.
As a startup, events are critical to building awareness and trust in a crowded space. And, events are a top driver of pipeline for the Starburst sales team.
With the HubSpot and Salesforce integrations, Starburst can deliver real-time event engagement data for timely follow-ups. They can also measure an event’s influence on pipeline and revenue via custom dashboards.
2021 | 1,200+ registrants | 550+ attendees
Trino is the open-source query engine that Starburst is built on, and the Trino community is a very active developer community with users and developers from all around the world.
Starburst hosts many of its Trino community events on Goldcast. These events range from short-form webinars to half-day summits, though Starburst likes to make them look and feel as engaging as a full-scale conference.
Trino events are educational in nature and designed to bring people together. Starburst uses all of Goldcast’s handy engagement features to make that possible.
The team needed a platform that encourages event attendance, which averages a healthy 40% for Trino events, and a platform that keeps attendees super engaged. The chat, booth, and breakout rooms are ideal for Trino events and foster an atmosphere of activity on a virtual platform. We have seen increased participation at our events since incorporating these features into our event plan.
Prior to Goldcast, Starburst was using two different platforms for virtual events and webinars. The experience left a lot to be desired.
Specifically, Starburst struggled with:
After months of painful vendor management, Starburst was able to consolidate all of its virtual experiences with Goldcast.
“We used a different event platform, and it was really difficult to use. I know that at that time a lot of companies were trying to switch into the virtual event space, so I tried to give them a lot of forgiveness throughout the process. But it was extremely difficult for a myriad of reasons.”
When evaluating events now versus events with their prior vendor, Starburst noted four specific areas where Goldcast shines.
From a platform perspective, Starburst wanted a partner that provided a seamless attendee experience. They wanted all registrants to have easy access on the day of the event—no lost or broken links. They also wanted to feel confident that there wouldn’t be any disruptions during the actual event.
Starburst is confident that the vendor switch was worth the effort. Previously, their post-event surveys averaged only two or three out of five for the overall experience.
Since switching to Goldcast, Starburst has increased attendee satisfaction scores, consistently reporting four and five stars across the board.
And it’s not just the attendees that are happy with the experience. Starburst’s partners were also really impressed with the sponsorship experience. The customization made it easy for Starburst to personalize the partner experience based on different sponsorship levels, and they loved that they were able to easily pass along helpful intent data based on attendee engagement.
Starburst hosts several events throughout the year, and they needed a single platform that made custom branding a breeze.
DataNova is Starbusts’s signature event, which fully reflects the company’s overall branding. Trino events, which are more community-focused, feature a much different look and feel.
“That’s the beauty of Goldcast. We're able to capture all these different brands using one platform. Our web designers think it's really easy to customize, which I love.”
The custom branding also makes it easy for Starburst to whip up impressive account-based field events. They’re able to surprise and delight target accounts by matching the event’s colors, logos, and more with that of their prospect’s brand.
As anyone that works in events knows, the job isn’t done when the event ends. Having timely access to the on-demand content is critical. The quick turnaround time for event and session content was another big win for Starburst.
“With our previous platform, it took us three weeks to get the recordings back. But with Goldcast, we’re able to get the recordings back within one day, so we can quickly put everything on-demand and follow-up with registrants.”
The biggest difference Starburst has seen is the hands-on support they receive from the team at Goldcast. Every customer—no matter how big or small—is matched with a customer success manager.
“You have onboarding for any tool like this, but I've never had a team that has been so supportive throughout the whole process. Ronita is a second set of eyes for us. She monitors all of our events and—without even being asked—will send us recommendations, best practices, anything she noticed that needs adjusting, and more. She makes sure we’re using every single feature and really using the platform to the best of our ability. I don't feel like I'm in it alone.”