When people think of event design, technology is not typically one of the first words that come to mind. Rather, the focus is placed on the physical design of the space (my personal favorite part of the process!), ensuring the event runs smoothly and creating a positive attendee experience. While these aspects are critical considerations, I can also tell you that in our rapidly evolving industry, the integration of technology is just as crucial. I had the privilege to attend Event Marketer’s EventTech Live in Las Vegas this November and was amazed at the event technologies that are new to the scene and existing platforms that keep continuing to grow.
Not only did I leave Las Vegas with a few unused $5 gambling chips from the Bellagio, but with an arsenal of event technologies to bring back to the MAG Team. With that, here are my favorite top 5 technologies I learned about and experienced at the event:
1. Virtual Reality
It’s here to stay and keeps getting better & better. Globacore is a leading company that has been at the forefront of Virtual Reality over the years. They combine physical and digital elements to make users feel completely immersed in an activation or game… whether it be creating a digital environment like they did in Paperdude which brought the classic arcade game Paperboy to life with a real spin bike or by setting up their own camera rigs to create a reality experience from the ground up. It goes to show you that when it comes to incorporating Virtual Reality into a consumer experience, the sky can quite literally be the limit.
Oculus Rift + Kinect + KickR = Our Homage to Paperboy: PaperDude VR from Globacore on Vimeo.
2. Mobile Charging Stations
They might be a tried & true technology, but nonetheless one that continues to increase engagement at an activation and serves as a great value-add. You might have thought you’ve seen them all but Brightbox is leading the “charge” with their secure charging stations whereby a kiosk (freestanding, tabletop or wall mounted) featuring locked slots, branded elements and if desired, digital ads and survey integrations. Guests receive a card that they first swipe into the machine, open a slot, plug their phone in, lock it up and walk away leaving their phone to charge securely. Pretty much a no-brainer.
Image courtesy of brightboxcharge.com.
3. Social, Social, Social
It’s almost 2016, you can’t have a campaign without it. Not only do you need social, but you want to also measure it. Postano not only aggregates and measures social media data using user-generated content featuring hashtags and a brand’s own social accounts, but also turns that data into a visual display that can be featured at your event. With Postano, you get a front-and-back-end system and a variety of “add-ons” like an app you can use to moderate your display feed on-the-go, a function that can respond to your guests content asking for permission to repost their Instagram or Twitter post, and even integrate feeds on your existing company’s website.
What’s an event without information? Polling an audience is a tale as old as time and has been done in countless ways, but meetoo has upped the ante by creating an interactive polling and real-time messaging platform that can be incorporated directly into your meeting. Attendees have the option to download the meetoo app to participate or simply use the web app via URL link to get involved. Not only can polling be accomplished with endless setting options, but there is also a plug-in to incorporate live polling into PowerPoint directly making the process even more seamless. Gathering information just got even easier.
Image courtesy of meetoo.io.
When it comes down to it, the reason we put on events is to elicit some level of networking, reaction and interaction. We are always looking for ways to not only have the brand engage with the audience but to have the audience interact with each other. Enter Proxfinity, a platform that works to increase networking at events using back-end data gathered by attendees during registration or onsite. Proxfinity provides attendees with a physical device that attaches to your badge, uses algorithms to visually connect two nearby attendees (either by a common colored light that appears or displaying each other’s initials on the badge). The amount of uses are endless – use it to identify leads at events, training purposes, or to purely get your audience connected together.
There you have it..technology is everywhere and with good reason. When it comes to planning your event, you must really consider your client’s goals for the campaign to not only produce an aesthetically beautiful event but also to narrow down on which technologies would best elevate and maximize your event’s impact. And with the help of innovative, progressive and ever-evolving partners like the ones above, I know the events we put on have a chance to reach that status and that works for me.