EVENTS AND CONFERENCE TRENDS THAT ARE TAKING THE INDUSTRY BY STORM

By Jorge Lopez | Tips For Your Event

Jul 01
Event and Conference Trends

If you haven’t been to an event, conference or meeting lately, then you are in for a big surprise. Corporate events have witnessed tremendous change and have raised the bar in all intricacies from attendee engagement to issues concerning styling.

Engagement has become the core element for any event planner or marketer. Event planners are looking for ways to create an exciting experience for their audience and also integrating various platforms to improve communication. Many companies and enterprises view events as a perfect playing field to engage the audience and directly connect with their customers. The enterprises that create a worthwhile, memorable and enriching experience for their clients are likely to become the market leaders. This text will try to look at some of the modern trends that are being adopted by event companies and event planners.

1. Attendee Engagement​

Planners are looking for new ways technologies and strategies to promote two-way communication with participants, building positive brand experience and driving participation rather than relying on the traditional sit and listen which is boring and monotonous.

Event planners are using various platforms to increase engagement. They are ditching PowerPoint slides for more engaging activities such as video conferencing, event-specific apps, live social feeds, on-site bloggers, audio polling, event hashtags and much more.

The use of these platforms enables the audience to give feedback which in turn helps the organizers to unearth valuable insights that can be used to enhance the overall customer experience. Active participation is an essential item that you won’t bypass if you want your event to be totally engaging.

2. Bespoke Event Venue/Location

Contrary to the olden days when hosting an event was all about having a big hotel ballroom where people would have some small talks and eat some canapés at a post drink event, modern day’s events and conferences are more about creativity. Event planners are currently looking for unique venues with multiple areas where people can attend during the various sections of the day. Event companies prefer hotels with AV support and space. Instead of hiring two venues, they hire a hotel with multiple areas where people can converge for a memorable morning meeting, have lunch in the cafeteria and converge for entertainment at the roof top. This is not a full brown trend, but it is gaining momentum and those who have already experienced it, love it.

Events have become perfectly styled venues poised with immersive themes that ramp up the atmosphere. #eventprof

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​3. Innovative Designs

Events are no longer held in the stuffy ballrooms lined with sets of chairs and a small stage; they have become perfectly styled venues poised with immersive themes that ramp up the atmosphere to draw the guest attention to the company’s brand. Event organizers are merging audiovisual elements, digital staging, styling and design services to transform their event into a branded experience thus creating brand loyalty and brand advocacy. Effective branding not only sells your brand name but also increases customer engagement which translates to improved connection and also leverages on the use of this actual vehicle to relay your message across all touch points. As an event planner, if you fail to recognize and adopt this planning mindset, you are in danger or losing your competitiveness.

​4. Use Of Technology

When it comes to providing unique, ultimate and personalized customer experience, technology does it all. Having Wi-Fi connection is no longer an add-on but an expectation. There are other innovative technologies that events are relying on. They include;

  • ​Customized event apps that feature work schedules and presentations
  • GPS event locator and navigation assistance
  • Live audience polling
  • Real-time language translation
  • On-screen social media integration
  • On-demand video feeds and special keynote webcasts

Constant communication through social media helps you to communicate to your guests and give them instant updates bridging the gap between the event and attendee’s experience. The audio-visual elements make the event engaging thus creating a long-lasting impression.

5. Creation of Event Communities​

To nurture a brand and build a fan base, event companies are creating sub-brands by developing event communities which bring people with common likes and interests together. Events are no longer one or two day projects, but sub-brands that create a community way before the event begins and continues even after the event. Technology is playing a pivotal role in extending the life cycle of the communities. However, it boils down to planners incorporating intuitive strategies to manage these communities.

​The hype plan should start with you creating formidable channels and platforms where your community can interact and expand. For a very long time, word-of-mouth has been the holy grail of marketing. If you can create, manage and sustain a community of events enthusiasts, you can tap the rich resource of positive insights, valuable feedback and free advertising.

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