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I started out with CC as I bet most did, with the plan to do email marketing. As our business grew, the events that we offered grew as well and CC was the easy choice to use for event marketing and management due to the seamless integration with our current email marketing platform.
Unfortunately, there were some key features missing from CC's event system that I'm finding available many other event management platforms. The two biggest deficits are the lack of a waitlist and special session registration (that is, a special event inside the main event which must be registered for separately). What I was forced to do is have separate events for the Main event, Special Session 1, Special Session 2 and separate waiting lists for each of those events. That's 6 "events" for one event -- this is not making my life easier.
The wait list has been a request that I've seen brought up manytimesbefore. Will it ever happen? Who knows? The special session is certainly a more complex problem, but many of your competitors are offering it.
In the end, it still seems like the Event Management solution is second banana to the email marketing system when, in fact, it's the side that really should be given more resources because it's such a personal, specific need. Everyone and their daughter has an email marketing system with contact management and 5 Million Brand-New Themes for Every Occasion! The events are where I'm actually hosting my clients - I need that side to be smarter.
You’ve brought up some good points. Having a wait list would be beneficial to our customers as would a session mgmt feature. We are tackling all feedback in order of demand and severity and please believe me when I say that we are working as hard and as fast as humanly possibly to enhance our Event Marketing tool.
You're right in saying Event Marketing is "second banana" to email in that the product is still in its infancy and that we have fewer users and developers for Events. That said, Event Marketing is very important to Constant Contact and we are constantly making enhancements to it based on user feedback. These are both very high demand features at or near the top of our feature backlog, so know that we are going to get there eventually.
Just an FYI to hopefully raise your level or optimism and confidence in us, we are adding a new payment option this summer that will allow your registrants to simply take out a credit card and pay right in the event flow without the reliance on PayPal, Google Checkout or making your registrant leave the page to finish their transaction elsewhere.