Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Ryan

Oliver Ryan

CEO, Count.It Labs

Oliver Ryan is founder and CEO of Count.It Labs. He is also the co-founder of Apartment Therapy Media (2004), one of the top lifestyle media networks online reaching over 20 million unique visitors per month. Immediately before founding Count.It, Mr. Ryan launched and ran SocialWorkout.com, an early fitness culture blog and interactive community. From 2009 to 2013, Social Workout hosted over 40,000 interactive fitness challenges with partners such as AOL/Huffington Post, Everyday Health, Greatist, Equinox, and Yoga Journal. The company also partnered with Whole Foods Market to develop and launch Full Spoon, a workplace wellness service launched in Norther California and successfully sold to LinkedIn and Tesla Motors. The Count.It technology, product design, and business model grew out of all of these experiences. Prior to diving into the world of "social fitness," Ryan launched Apartment Therapy with his brother — while also covering technology as a writer/reporter at Fortune magazine. In an earlier life, he lived in Silicon Valley and was the Director of Business and Technology content for Knight Ridder Digital — and onetime General Manager of SiliconValley.com. Ryan is a graduate of the Harvard Business School and the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism. He earned his BA in Physics, with honors, from Wesleyan University.

Please visit https://www.countit.com for more information.

Mr. Ryan can be contacted at 917-214-2073 or oliver@countit.com

Coming up in September 2019...

Hotel Group Meetings: Uncommon Destinations

The last few years have been good to the Hotel Group Meetings industry and that trend is expected to continue into 2019. Planners are brimming with confidence due to an expanding economy and increased job creation, which typically results in a boost in corporate meetings. Given this promising outlook, planners are trying to outdo themselves to satisfy the high expectations of their clients. One notable trend is to integrate unusual settings into the meeting experience, hosting groups at local zoos, aquariums, museums, event centers, or other outdoor facilities. The goal is to embrace uncommon destinations, rather than a typical hotel conference room, so that meetings can be memorable, unique and stimulating. This is also part of another trend which is to support all things local - from hosting events at landmark city venues; to catering through local restaurants, food trucks and microbreweries; to hosting off-site excursions like agri-tours, athletic events or scenic 5k routes. However, though the setting might be spectacular, there are still some bedrock components that must be provided to ensure a successful meeting. Free, high-speed Wi-Fi is still one of the most requested services. Planners have to make sure that a comprehensive communication infrastructure is in place so clients can easily connect - and stay connected - to the network throughout the entire meeting experience. Also, technology tools can be used to streamline the booking, registration, and check-in process, and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) materials can be utilized to ensure seamless access to conference events. There are also numerous software tools that encourage audience participation, as well as integrating polls, Q&A, surveys and games into speakers' presentations. The September Hotel Business Review will examine issues relevant to group meetings and will report on what some hotels are doing to promote this sector of their operations.