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From BizBash C.E.O. David Adler: Why Apple’s New Mission for Its Stores Is a Big Deal for the Event Industry

The tech giant announced its vision for its stores to function as “town squares.”

Master illustrator Todd Selby taught a class at Apple Union Square in San Francisco.
Master illustrator Todd Selby taught a class at Apple Union Square in San Francisco.
Photo: Courtesy of Apple

David Adler (@DavidAdler) is the C.E.O. and founder of BizBash.

Bravo to Apple.

For years I have been preaching to the event industry that with the fragmentation of media, venues are becoming the new town squares of the world. The announcement that Apple plans to launch dozens of new educational sessions next month in all 495 of its stores is a meaningful endorsement for the mission of the event industry.

Like the launch of the iPhone 10 years ago, Apple says that the event program, called “Today at Apple,” is one of its major initiatives. Angela Ahrendts, Apple’s senior vice president of retail, said in a press release: “We’re creating a modern-day town square, where everyone is welcome in a space where the best of Apple comes together to connect with one another, discover a new passion, or take their skill to the next level.”

Combined with the millennial belief that events are the new luxury, as well as the transformation of retail into more of a “pop-up” mentality, event-thinking continues to be one of the trends that makes events one of the most important industries of our era.

By activating its venues in such a smart way, Apple follows traditional venues like convention centers, independent venues, and activity venues as an important part of human gathering that is relevant to people for learning, commerce, and recreation.

Apple continues to have their finger on the pulse of what is happening in society, and the thoughtfulness that has gone into this strategic move really does justify our optimism for the art of event-organizing. I can’t wait to see how other retail chains and pop-up shops enhance their relationships with their customers by getting into the game with vigor and determination to be relevant. The event industry stands ready to help.

Bravo to Apple for recognizing the power of live gatherings that serve customers in new ways.

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