We can’t talk about the boom in event tech without talking about COVID-19. The pandemic has propelled what was already a fast-growing area of the industry into its most important and sought-after aspect. Although initially a huge blow to organisers and attendees, the past year and a half has forced the industry to adapt, evolve and become even more essential.
According to EventMB, 73% of planners have been able to successfully pivot their event to virtual, and with this transition has come an explosion in event technology that allows attendees to participate, communicate and provide feedback like never before. This in turn has meant organisers can flex their creative muscles further, no longer restricted by a physical space, and deliver an event that far exceeds the expectations of its audience.
The industry has benefitted enormously from tech advancements over the last few years, and with more developments announced all the time, technology is set to increasingly influence the future of events. Below you’ll find six of the more interesting event technology trends that you can use to boost your event.
For large events, organisers and attendees can save time by speeding up site registration using some innovative event tech. Smart wearables such as badges and keychains can be scanned at check-in points and booked guests can simply walk straight through with no fuss.
Alternatively, facial recognition technology has come on leaps and bounds in the past few years. Attendees can provide a photo of their face when registering for the event, which machines can then recognise as they arrive and promptly print any necessary documents. This not only saves time for attendees, but helps organisers improve security and control numbers.
Event planning apps
App-based event planning can make the most complex of events relatively easy to manage and organise. The convenience of having your event details at hand all the time allows for on-the-fly changes and greater flexibility, as well as a great opportunity to extend your branding.
Having everything in one place is a massive selling factor for attendees, as well as offering better opportunities for networking and engagement with other attendees and speakers. Guests can also ask questions in real time to get more information, freeing up the organisers’ time.
AR and VR
If you’ve been keeping up with event tech over the last couple of years, then no doubt you’ll have seen that augmented reality and virtual reality are the must-have additions to any event. Experience is everything, and AR and VR are allowing organisers to customise events to match their audience’s interests, something that 90% of marketers feel is important.
From interactive product demos to digital assistants and access to exclusive content, the limits are seemingly boundless for what AR and VR can achieve. Think about how you can use this technology to elevate certain elements of your brand and show your audience why they should become customers.
As we gradually and safely start to move back towards the world of live events, expect to see a lot more ‘hybrid’ aspects attached to conferences and other large-scale occasions. The ability to live stream an event brings together the physical and digital worlds, allowing brands to reach a far bigger audience and increase engagement tenfold.
Your biggest advantage when live streaming is your brand’s social media presence. Advertise your streaming event on Twitter, Instagram, TikTok – you name it – then encourage attendees, event staff and suppliers to share, share, share. Creating paid ads will extend your reach even further.
Nowadays, if you put on an event and don’t make every effort to ensure it’s accessible to as many people as possible, you’re falling behind. Not only does accessibility help your attendees to have a better experience, but it also allows you to reach a far bigger audience, and as we know, more reach = more revenue.
One of the ways to use event tech to make your event more accessible is to allow live translation, both in English for those hard of hearing and in other languages to reach international attendees. Translations can be sent through to people’s devices if they are watching remotely, or to ear pieces for those at the event.
Really real-time analytics
It’s no secret how useful live data can be. Statistics and reports can be available instantly which can then factor into a flexible event plan, with decisions on itinerary, content and activities being made in direct response.
69% of people think analytics is the most important consideration in event management software, so spend some time weighing up different options to find a provider that can give you the information you need. Just make sure that you are always compliant with GDPR when collecting data, and let attendees know how their information will be used.