Improving live meetings with engagement technology and analytics
Educational Measures collects data that drive actionable insights
Educational Measures is betting on the strength and success of true togetherness. The 13-year-old Centennial-based company develops second screen technology for live meetings. They collect live meeting data and analytics that drive actionable insights and continual improvement, increasing audience engagement.
Brothers Marc and Mike Crawford, the CEO and CTO, respectively, set the strategic direction when they co-founded the company. Ryan Crawford, the youngest of the family, joined two years later.
Before Educational Measures launched, the brothers, each separated by less than two years, grew up in a single bedroom, sharing toys, books and gossip.
“Ryan and Marc used to play G.I. Joe together,” Mike recalls.
Marc went on to receive an MBA from University of Colorado Denver and was a management consultant at Keane Consulting Group.
“I was going to exciting places like Plano, Tex., and Topeka, Kan., and was just feeling burnt out,” Marc says of that experience. Mike came to him with a business idea, realizing he could improve upon the audio-visual work he was doing in the health-care sector.
“I liked the opportunity to build our own business, be our own bosses,” Marc says, admitting he didn’t know much about “live event technology.”
“He still doesn’t,” Mike, the eldest brother, jokes.
Though it was his inspiration that led to Educational Measures, Mike continued as director of interactive media solutions at Jobson Publishing, a health-care information and marketing services provider until April 2004. He calls Marc “the risk-taker,” whereas he describes himself as more “cautious.”
To start, Mike handled operations and Marc managed sales and marketing. Later, Mike settled into the product side of the business. The transitions were smooth and without much formality.
“There wasn’t a conversation delineating everybody’s responsibility,” Mike says. “Starting off, everybody did a little of everything. We knew each other’s strengths. My forte’ was on the technical and operations side, whereas Marc is the more visionary guy.” Ryan has absorbed the role of finance administrator.
In the beginning, the Crawford brothers struggled over how they were going to differentiate their company in a “highly commoditized offering.” Far beyond standard audio-visual, Educational Measures created a fleet of its own software and systems to collect data on corporate meetings and deliver analysis and feedback on the effectiveness of those meetings to their clients. Ultimately, the service helps businesses evaluate whether they’re achieving the ROI of live meetings.
Today, the meeting analytics market has grown to a multi-billion-dollar industry thanks to new data and analytics. Educational Measures, a company of about 80 people, aims to deliver those insights to clients in an easily digestible form, using interactive analytics dashboards and its Array technology for iPads.
As the company has evolved, Marc calls this a growth phase. He talks of expanding the second screen technology, virtual reality and predictive analytics, heightening the learning experience and marrying stories with data to continue to improve the live-meeting experience.
Thus far, Educational Measures has grown without outside investors.
“I think that helps the relationships between us, too,” Marc says, citing trust as an essential element in their success. “We just had this ‘eat what you kill’ mentality.”
Marc says watching his company and his brothers’ professional and personal evolutions has been something special.
“I think one thing we all share is a really positive outlook on life,” Mike echoes. “Earlier in the company, it was a very enjoyable family-like environment around here. We never took things too seriously to the point where it wasn’t fun anymore.”
(This sponsored content was paid for by Educational Measures.)