< PrevNext > Lawrence Coburn, DoubleDutch founder & CEO The Dark-Data Knight By Elizabeth West / December 20, 2016 / Contact Reporter Share 2016 has been a year of transformation for meetings technologies. As the industry works to quantify the value of live events, the pursuit of "dark data"—the record of attendee activities and interactions that happen onsite—has intensified. Coburn's meetings app company has been leading that chase.The company launched its Live Engagement Marketing platform in May. The platform feeds live event data from the DoubleDutch app into Marketo to target leads and existing customers with automated, personalized messaging. Etouches followed DoubleDutch, introducing a live data metrics tool in July. Coburn told BTN in May that its bigger rival Cvent had trouble delivering such data because its social feed and activity feature was hidden in a utility menu on Cvent's mobile app. Within a month, Cvent's social feed had moved to the app's launch page.The outspoken startup executive openly questioned the prospects of the Vista Equity/Cvent merger when it was announced in April, saying that the ultimate play had to be the merger of Lanyon and Cvent. His predictions proved correct. Coburn also predicted Cvent would face innovation paralysis after such a merger. That second prediction remains to be seen, but Coburn has positioned DoubleDutch to pounce at any hint of weakness in terms of live event data capture.Meanwhile, Vista had a surprise for DoubleDutch. It bought Marketo after a June merger announcement, putting Coburn's closest Live Engagement Marketing partner in the same portfolio pipeline as Cvent. Still, meetings industry technology expert Corbin Ball saw the move as the highest compliment to DoubleDutch's vision to move live event data out of the dark and into an end-to-end ecosystem.Coburn admits the Marketo acquisition put a crimp in DoubleDutch's differentiation and that Cvent could benefit from tighter integrations moving forward. But DoubleDutch is on to the next-generation platform. "The longer term goal is to execute those campaigns from within our system and more in real time" by working on a messaging platform rather than through email campaigns, Coburn said. "We think Marketo is the wrong system, that email is the wrong system; no one is looking at their email during an event."