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May 12, 2023

Mike Mauer: 5 Benefits of RFID for Event Organizers

Mike Mauer is a man comfortable wearing many event-related hats. 

He’s the Head of Marketing at Stage Right Entertainment; Founder of concert marketing platform Sparrow; Head of Marketing at White Oak Music Hall; Partner and Co-Founder of event production and consulting company Valmont; and that’s just the first page of his extensive resume.

Mauer first started dabbling with RFID technology at his events in 2014, and quickly recognized its potential.

“At a certain level, I think RFID almost becomes a necessity,” he offers. “When you have a certain scale of event, a certain approach to your operations, and to a lesser degree, a certain price point.”

Here, Mauer outlines five ways event organizers can benefit from using RFID…


“RFID is a really good way to protect a fan’s investment and the producers’ investment. If people are paying $300, $400, $600 for a Coachella ticket, the simple fact is that things like barcodes are just too simple to defraud. They don't provide any kind of protection for the fan, they don't really provide any kind of protection for the producer.

“RFID is really the best way that we have right now to protect these high investments that people are making either in their ticket or at the producer level.”

“RFID is a really good way to protect a fan’s investment and the producers’ investment."


“From a data collection perspective, it's really important. The average ticket order’s 1.7 tickets – let's just round it up to two tickets. But I'm only getting one email at the ticket purchase. And by asking people to register the wristband, to personalize their wristband to them, you're effectively doubling your audience dataset.

“When I first started running RFID programs in 2014, that was justification enough. It was like, holy crap, all of a sudden we'll have double the insights on who these people are? Once you say, hey, I truly know the individual person who is in my festival, there's a lot of great opportunities to do different things to provide a better experience.”


“One of the programs that I loved doing was having photographers on site [taking] pictures of fans with RFID-enabled cameras – more specifically, it’s a DSLR with an RFID tap pad connected via Bluetooth.

“The fan scans their wristband on the tap pad, and instantly receives a branded photo in their inbox or texted to them. It’s very highly shareable, and has this brand amplification component to it.

“That can also be packaged as a product and sold to a sponsor, so that you can have the program presented by Coca Cola, Nike, etc. There's so much that you can do with that.

“And if I'm able to capture these little photos for somebody on site at a festival and maybe capture a little video of them, can I dynamically take festival B-roll footage and splice in their personal footage and send them a customized recap video that is for them specifically? Technologically you totally can. It's easy to do because you know who they are."

“One of the programs that I loved doing was having photographers on site [taking] pictures of fans with RFID-enabled cameras..."


“When people would register, we would ask them for their allergens, so that if we unfortunately found somebody who was unconscious during the event, we could scan the wristband to pull up their allergens.”


“If people register their credit card information, you can enable a cashless system within the entire event, which helps really speed up lines, which allows people to just have one single way to tap the wristband to pay for their food and drink and then move on. It also has been proven to really increase your per-head spend – fans [using RFID] spend 30-ish percent more. So it really affects your bottom line.”

Follow Mike on LinkedIn.


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Article by
Rod Yates

Rod is the Marketing Content Manager at Audience Republic. He was previously the editor of Rolling Stone Australia and Kerrang! Australia. Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich once sent him a toaster – which was very thoughtful of him.