How to go from “it’s complicated” to “we’re exclusive”

The most successful companies know how to create customer loyalty, and they do this through a strategy called others firstcaring for your customers and putting their needs before your own. It’s what every relationship needs to thrive, and is a surefire way to turn that relationship status from from it’s complicated” to we’re exclusive.”

How to put others first:

  • Keep your customers top of mind, especially when making business decisions
  • Go above what’s expected to serve them well
  • Acknowledge their needs, and being willing to put these above your own
  • Show an occasional grand gesture

What this looks like at Elevate:

Katie Bersinger, Elevate Chief of Staff, is passionate about client care, so much that she’s constantly brainstorming new ways to put others first. A few examples include:

  • Mailing a handwritten note to clients after each event
  • Celebrating a client’s birthday with a card and gift from the team
  • Creating time for a personal “catch-up” before meetings
  • Sending a custom gift to celebrate life events like: weddings, new babies, or work anniversaries
  • Taking each guest on a full tour of the office. This shows the story behind our brand, and includes a celebratory moment for each client.
It’s the small acts of kindness mixed with an occasional grand gesture that add a cherry on top to your customer’s experience with your brand.


Authenticity for the win

People can tell if a company truly cares, or if they’re simply trying to create more business. Gestures–small or grand–should come from the heart. If you truly care for your clients and develop an others first strategy, you’ll be on your way to long-lasting customer relationships.

How Chick-fil-A influences local communities

2017 Urban Youth Impact Spring Stampede 5k presented by Chick-fil-A • Created by from Elevate Live Events on Vimeo.

Honda. Coca-Cola. Chick-fil-A. RaceTrac. Delta.


It’s easy to see the impact these major brands have on a local community. From brick and mortar locations to financial contributions in times of need or events to raise awareness in certain markets, these companies have influence in the lives of many individuals across the nation. And what we love about what we do is that sometimes we get to play a small role in helping these companies make their mark. And the remark-ability factor for these brands is HIGH.

Wait, what’s remark-ability?


We’re glad you asked…

Recently one of our hosts had the chance to work with a local Chick-fil-A (operators are locally owned and operated–small business FTW!) in Boynton Beach, FL on a 5K that annually supports an organization called Urban Youth Impact (UYI).

UYI is on a mission to love, equip, and empower inner-city youth and their parents. The Spring Stampede 5k is one of the organization’s major fundraisers each year and enables them to be seen by thousands of people that may not otherwise connect with their brand.


Cue the confetti cannon, folks. This is a fine example of remark-ability.


When a well-known brand like Chick-fil-A uses their influence in the community to help a smaller organization like Urban Youth Impact, we think you should know about it. Sure, we grabbed a mic and brought energy into the mix, but the real heroes are the men and women in Boynton Beach sharing their resources and making a lasting impact on the youth in their community.

Want to see how awesome this day was? Check out the amazing video (above) of the Spring Stampede 5K from our friend David Bley at

PS – Interested in seeing where our team has traveled this month? Head over to our host tracker!

Where in the world are our red shoes?


51 to be exact. And we have a special host tracker just for you! See where our team members can be found this month and keep scrolling to explore a day in the life of an Elevate Host.


*Click the red pins above!



Temperature isn’t the only thing rising this spring. This May, we’ve hit an all-time high with over 50 events in one month. Our hosts are traveling across the board to lead event activations for clients like Columbia Sportswear, Chick-fil-A, Delta, Coca-Cola, and more. Click the red pins above to learn more about our hosts and the activations they’re leading!



Elevate Hosts, sometimes called Experience Leaders, serve clients by leading event activations across the country. When we say event hosts, many people think red shoes, smiling faces, and enthusiastic emcees. It’s an accurate image (and one we love!) but it’s not the only aspect of an experience leader’s role.


A host’s responsibilities might also include:
  • Designing crowd engagement and team building activations
  • Coordinating logistics with event planners and clients
  • Researching and managing sound equipment
  • Creating custom playlists for each event
  • Ideating and executing new systems, ideas, and technology
  • Participating in team collaboration across multiple projects
The ultimate goal of an experience leader is to make the client the hero. This means going above what’s expected to surprise and delight, and deliver remarkable experiences for our clients and their guests.



The red shoes have become somewhat iconic, creating a simple yet lasting impression on clients and their guests. But you won’t find the red shoes at every Elevate event. So when do we decide to strut this particular footwear?


Each of our clients deserve a custom experience and we aim to design an event that shouts their brand. We take into account everything from audience engagement to our team’s attire. When we lead an event, we no longer represent Elevate, but rather, we point all attention to the true heroour clients. The red Nike Air Force 1 shoes currently come into play for three specific partners: Chick-fil-A, Delta and Coca-Cola. We work alongside these organizations to build their brand, and the shoes–though simple–play a significant role in this strategy.

We’d love to hear what makes your organization stand out. Drop a comment below to share your thoughts!


Do you know someone who might enjoy the Experience Leader role at Elevate? Be a pal and send them here.

How to Become a Brand of Choice

Mediocre brands are rarely the talk of the town. People take time only to praise the incredible and warn against the incredibly bad. So what’s a brand to do?

Become a Brand of Choice

Unfortunately for customers, remark-ability isn’t the norm. Fortunately for brands, remark-ability isn’t complicated–and it will make you a brand of choice.

The simplicity of it all:

  • When you provide remarkable customer service, people feel valued.
  • When people feel valued, they remember your brand.
  • When people remember your brand, they choose your products and services.

The X Factor

Every company is obligated to deliver what they’ve promised. This isn’t remarkable. It’s expected. So how do you provide remark-ability?

Surprise and delight is the X Factor of business, and it means going above what’s promised to deliver an unexpectedly, delightful experience.

How to Surprise and Delight

Elevate Gear is now live! Our delivery process could be as simple as finding an empty box, slapping on a shipping label, and calling it a day. But how would this make us a brand of choice?

Instead, we’ve designed custom packaging that, in addition to a clean look, creates a surprise and delight moment for each customer.

Why Surprise and Delight?

It’s a simple and effective way to:

  • Make customers feel valued
  • Provide memorable service
  • Become a brand of choice

How can you provide remark-ability and become a brand of choice?

How to Run a Successful Internship Program

How to Make Your Internship Program a Win-Win

It’s almost summer and that means you’re getting ready to welcome your newest team members…

Summer interns

Despite the coffee-making, errand-running stereotype, your internship program can make a positive impact on both you and your interns.

Internships truly are a win-win: organizations benefit from the value added by an eager, determined generation while interns learn and develop under an experienced team.

Or at least that’s the dream…

A win-win internship only works if the organization and its leaders know how to run an effective program and are willing to prioritize an intern’s growth.

Accomplishing a successful internship isn’t as hard as it may seem and we’re here to walk you through the steps.

How to run a successful internship program

Download our free how-to guide for tips, and make your next internship program a win-win!

Sign up for The Mic and be the first to get leadership tips, event recaps, and industry news delivered straight to your inbox! (And don’t worry–The Mic only drops once a week).

A Quick Word on Leadership


5 Simple Tips


From Elevate Founder and President Billy Boughey


1. Listen well

Great leaders listen more than they talk. The next time you’re with your team, pay attention to the amount of time you spend listening to their ideas, feedback, and thoughts.


2. Care for others

When people think back to their interactions with you, they won’t remember what you said. They’ll remember how you made them feel.


3. Value everyone

So if a person values how they feel more than what you say, how do you leave a positive, lasting impression?


Pretend like every person you come in contact with has a flashing sign saying: “Make me feel like the most important person right now.”


4. Protect your time

Always ask yourself: is this the highest and best use of my time? This helps to manage your time well and prioritize the most important and urgent tasks.


5. Deliver great content

Face-to-face time with team members is important and good, but guess what–it’s the content that can make or break the experience. As a leader, you spend a great amount of time leading meetings, and maybe even hosting events or speaking engagements. If the content is valuable, your team will continue looking forward to time together.


For more on leadership, see our Confetti Style Leadership blog.

Top Leadership Resources

Free Resources


Building a Story Brand – Donald Miller
Leadership Freak – Dan Rockwell




Good to Great by Jim Collins
Start with Why by Simon Sinek
Creating Magic by Lee Cockerell
Mindset by Carol S. Dweck

Elevate Photo Contest

National Photo Month

A 10 second history lesson


In 1987, Congress officially recognized the month of May as National Photo Month. To this day, many individuals and organizations take advantage of this opportunity to acknowledge and appreciate photography.

In honor of National Photo Month, we’re inviting you to compete in the Elevate Photo Challenge for a chance to win free Elevate Gear.

How does it work?

Share about your favorite event or experience, and what made it so special!

The rules are simple:

1. Submit a family friendly photo on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook by 11 am Friday, May 5 (Eastern Time).
2. Choose a photo that represents your favorite event or experience. Be creative!
3. Use the caption to tell us about your photo. What made that experience so great?
4. Use #activatingideas and tag us (on Instagram and Twitter use @elevateteam) (on Facebook use @elevateliveevents)
5. Sit back, relax, and wait for the winner to be announced this Friday.

How to win:

We’ll award one winner for each social media platform (Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook). The photo with the most likes wins!  *Participants must follow all above rules to win. 

Thanks for participating and good luck!

How to Create a Positive Organizational Culture

Plywood People, a non-profit in Atlanta that leads a community of start-ups doing good, focuses on helping others build a culture fitting for their organization. This week, Plywood People featured Billy Boughey, Founder and President of Elevate, and his top 10 points on culture.

If you’ve been a part of a team, you know the impact culture has on the people, environment, and goals of an organization. At Elevate, we prioritize our company culture and view this as the most important metric in business. By allowing culture to determine our hiring process, business strategies, and scope of work, we design a team and environment that go hand-in-hand with our company vision.

Culture doesn’t happen by chance. It’s intentionally created and designed.

The Elevate culture is impacted by our five core values: relationships, remark-ability, enthusiasm, initiative, and bravery; and this might look something like:

  • Actively looking for ways to encourage others

  • Participating in team-wide book discussions

  • Welcoming ideas from all team members

  • Celebrating with confetti cannons

  • Attending relevant conferences

  • Greeting delivery drivers by name

  • Diving into leadership opportunities

  • Breaking into spontaneous dance parties when appropriate

  • Prioritizing team-building through activities and games

Head over to Plywood People’s blog to learn more about how to develop and maintain a positive culture (with tips for getting started!).

Huge thanks to Plywood People for featuring us on their #Plywords Journey!

A positive culture takes effort both to create and maintain, and our team is always looking for new ways to grow. Do you have any tips for building your organizational culture? Share with us in the comments below!

Oh, Snap!

We recently announced Elevate Gear, a new way to share stories and inspire conversations around meaningful topics. As we approach the final launch date, our team is prepping everything from inventory to website updates to marketing shots.

If you were to stop by our office last week, you would have walked into bright lights, white backgrounds, and a room full of confetti. This was our first-ever photo shoot, and it felt like a scene from America’s Next Top Model. We worked with incredibly talented photographers and came out of the process with fun bloopers, high-quality photos, and a few lessons learned.

3 Things Learned from Our 10 Minutes of Fame

Listen and Respect Your Clients’ Needs

Our photographers prepped for the photo shoot ahead of time, familiarizing themselves with Elevate’s company culture and office setup. We had quite a few, specific shots in mind, and they prioritized our needs throughout the day.

Because they took the time to learn about Elevate Gear and our vision for this new line of products, they had the ability to suggest relevant, creative shots from a professional’s perspective. We came out of the photo shoot with a great mix of our original ideas, as well as unique photos inspired by new friends.

Empower and Instill Confidence

As we’ve shared, this was our first photo shoot and our team members didn’t exactly come from a runway background. However, the photographers affirmed us, making us feel like the stars of Fashion Week.

Photo shoots can be awkward, especially if you’re a novice in front of the camera, and the day wouldn’t have been half as fun if we lacked confidence. Words are powerful and having an encourager behind the camera made all the difference.

People are looking for someone to make them feel confident in their decisions, and you have the unique opportunity to empower and encourage your clients.

Be Their Jiminy Cricket

Rather than passively participating in the photo shoot, our photographers actively led the day. They brought a level of expertise that shined when directing shots, setting lights, and giving advice. Because of their experience with photography and their leadership on the set, our team found it easy to trust their judgment and insight.

As you work with clients, remember why they’ve invited you in for a partnership. They’re looking for an expert in the field to lead them in the right direction. We say to be their Jiminy Cricket because they need guidance from a place of wisdom, experience, and expertise.

So how do you add value to your clients? Listen well, instill confidence, and provide clear direction.

Do you have something to add? Drop your suggestions for how to add value to clients in the comments below!

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