Event Innovators 2014: Lance Broumand

The C.E.O. & founder of UrbanDaddy aims to create one-of-a-kind live experiences.

By Michele Laufik June 17, 2014, 7:00 AM EDT

Lance Broumand, C.E.O. & founder, UrbanDaddy

Photo: Michael B. Shane

Before founding UrbanDaddy, Lance Broumand, 32, was a New York lawyer with a penchant for throwing what he recalls as “some truly legendary parties” while at his firm. And although he’s given up law, his planning skills are still a big part of what he does. The lifestyle media company he started in 2005 also serves as an event agency for many high-profile advertisers that are aiming for the same target—affluent, tech-savvy urban males.

“Most everything we were marketing ‘online’ was meant to inspire an ‘offline’ action,” Broumand says. “It was only natural that our campaigns transcend the digital medium and carry through to amazing, one-of-a-kind experiences. There is nothing more powerful than physical experiences—things you can touch, feel, hold, smell, and savor. They impact you in a way that digital cannot.”

UrbanDaddy demonstrated its flair for producing unique sensory affairs with the Museum of Modern Mexology event for Herradura Tequila in April 2013, where bartenders were turned into fine artists. Thanks to embedded accelerometers in their cocktail mixers, bar staffers were able to create abstract art based on the speed, direction, and nature of their “shakes,” Broumand says. “The aim of the campaign was to draw a parallel between ‘fine art’ and ‘fine mixology’ and bring the two closely together.”

That kind of marketing innovation earned UrbanDaddy two 2013 Digiday Publishing Awards for “Best Advertising Innovation by a Publisher,” as well as “Best in Show” for its experiential campaign with Mini in which the company used the car brand’s new Paceman model as a traveling event “venue” that offered concierge and chauffeur services and toured four cities.

As for the future, Broumand predicts that event “personalization”— the idea that no two people will experience the same event in the same way—will be the next big thing with the help of digital and social media profiles.

“Projects like the Museum of Modern Mexology are very exciting and huge feats of production innovation, but much bigger, more dazzling things are coming,” he says. “We hope to be leading the way.”

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