We’ve talked a little about ARGFest here at MovieViral, the yearly conference that features games and speakers all focused on Alternate Reality Games and transmedia. This year’s event is this week, but it looks like the costs of running the event are a bit higher than expected. Read the official statement after the break to see what you can do to help.

We hate to admit it, but this AMAZING event is DESPERATE for sponsors! We’ve received a great deal of support, but it is just not enough to cover our expenses. For a variety of reasons, our on-site attendance is much lower than our projections. This has had enormous implications in the actual cost of the conference. For example – fewer attendees means fewer hotel rooms which means we were unable to meet our contracted hotel requirement. Not only do we have to cover those costs, but because we did not make a certain percent of our contracted rooms, our food costs 10% more than anticipated. Despite the increase in food costs, fewer attendees still means that it’s more difficult for us to meet our catering food & beverage minimums and, so, each meal costs us significantly more per attendee than we had anticipated. And on and on…

Because of the way ARGFest is/was set up, these costs fall, personally, on this year’s conference chair: Brooke Thompson. As much as she would love to be able to cover it all & move on, the reality is that she cannot. And, so, we are reaching out to you for help.

We have until July 18 to pay the bill and need a minimum of $6,000 to cover the difference (we hope to have more exact figures on Wednesday). If you can help out, please do! If you already have, THANK YOU!

A few vague facts:
While our on-site attendance is lower than projected, our online audience exceeds expectations. Through association with unfiction.com, we have an audience of over 25,000 registered users and average about 8,000 visitors a day. Through twitter and various blogs, we reach a great many deal more. We anticipate a significant amount of coverage during and just after the event. Awareness of ARGFest is growing exponentially and, recently, we were mentioned on several prominent websites, including Variety.com. You can learn more about our (not-so) average (and completely awesome) attendees & speakers through our sponsorship opportunities pdf.

We recognize that, at this point, sponsorship is mostly a good deed for a great group of people doing even greater things. That does not mean that we won’t do everything that we can to make sponsorship worth your while. And, of course, there will be prominent shout-outs at the conference, on our website, and on twitter. As many of our attendees are aware of our financial situation, they will be even more aware of and grateful towards our sponsors.

And, if you are interested in transmedia storytelling, pervasive games, or alternate reality gaming – we have built up an amazing network over the years. We would gladly help you network and find amazing people that can help you out. Additionally, Brooke will donate her time in exchange for ARGFest sponsorships. For as little as $1000 (a Silver level sponsorship), you’ve got her for a day. With almost 10 years of experience in this space, she can get you and your team up to speed on what’s happening in the transmedia world or, perhaps, take a comprehensive look at your existing plans and help make sure you are on the right track. If you’re local to Atlanta, she’ll come to your offices. If not, no big deal – she does most of her work remotely. But, if you cover her travel expenses, she’ll gladly come to you. If you want to sponsor us at a higher level, you can have even more of her time. Contact her to work out the details.

To set up a sponsorship and/or learn more, check out our sponsorship tiers or just get in touch. To donate directly and immediately, you can do so through paypal (there’s a link over there on the right… under Boost us!). You can also become a member of The Order of the Trout for just $10 (and get an awesome button to boot!)

By Dan Koelsch

Dan Koelsch is our Executive Editor and in charge of Advertising and Promotions. He has a Bachelor's Degree in Radio TV Film from California State University Fullerton, with a Minor in Advertising. He's a diehard Trekkie and a big Superman fan.

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