26 Mar Will Event Tech Really Change How We Manage Events? – Part 3
If you’ve got some prior experience with organising events of any scale, you perhaps already know how precious engagement and the interactions with the audience are. But in times when attention spans are shrinking at a great pace and most people are highly distracted, you need to go that extra mile to achieve the goals and objectives you have set for the event. Which is where high-tech event management solutions come into the picture, in 2019 and beyond.
Are you curious to know what the future holds for the way we’ll engage the audience at events? Read on to see our expert opinion, recommendations, and predictions about the use of event tech in the years to come.
How Will The Adoption of Event Tech Look?
The way we (and other industry experts) see it, is that the use of sophisticated event tech is most likely to come at a cost that not everyone can afford. This is why we strongly feel that the adoption of event tech isn’t going to be the same across all client segments. So, here’s some good news and some bad news in this regard – depending on which segment you belong to.
“Fancy” Event Tech isn’t necessarily a good choice for every event budget-wise
According to the findings presented in Pulse Report 2018 published by Eventbrite’s Research Team, only 0.6% of the entire pool of event clients can actually afford to invest in fancy event tech [SOURCE: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/blog/academy/eventbrite-pulse-report-2018-fds00/]. The companies that are lucky enough to be in this top 0.6% segment are expected to spend close to £20-30k out of their entire budget on event tech alone. If you are in this segment, well, it’s actually good news for you since you will have a lot more options to choose from in the future when it comes to fancy event tech.
There are Event Tech solutions for every budget
What about those companies who are planning to organise an event but are not in that top 0.6% segment or just don’t have a huge budget to spend on tech? Well, if you are in this segment, here’s the good news – you can still dedicate a small fraction of your budget towards leveraging the power of simpler tech like event apps.
If you’re looking for some tips in this direction, check out our first blog in this series (the section on Apps) for a couple of ideas that can get you started thinking.
Where is the Event Tech Boom Headed in the Future?
Without a doubt, event and similar tech is getting bigger by the day and the growth is certainly not showing any signs of slowing down. Because who doesn’t want to deliver their audience the kind of immersive experiences that makes them actually feel they attended an amazing event?
Having said this, the event tech boom isn’t going to last forever, because as soon as the audience grow used to it, they will be looking for a change. There’s a reason why industry trends shift over time! So, here are some of our predictions about how events are going to be organised in the future.
A major shift towards unplugged events
We predict a gradual shift away from expensive, gimmicky, and fancy technology and towards ‘unplugged conferences’. Too much online connectivity can be distracting and most event companies will be quick to realize this as the audience gradually gets overwhelmed with all the technology and overload of information in the future.
Venues that have limited online connectivity will work great for this purpose – not now, but in the future. So what will replace all that need for being surrounded by technology that almost everyone has grown habitual to? This brings us to our next point!
Focus more on delivering rich sensory experiences
We are all humans, in the end, and have five basic senses that can make us feel engaged. Here’s what will need to be done in order to deliver rich sensory experiences to the event audience in the future.
There will be more emphasis on tailored catering for the attendees.
Giving delegates real visual experiences by setting up the right kind of lighting or using dramatic scenery, for example, instead of delivering virtual experiences through VR or AR.
This will be all about learning more about the science of smell and crafting unique experiences for the attendees, depending on the type of event.
Commissioned soundtracks would work well for this, and allow you to control the atmosphere in the arena.
Make the audience feel comfortable and let them experience things in their hands for real, instead of delivering just a virtual experience that may lack the sense of touch.
Here are a few tips we recommend if you truly want to redefine engagement at your future events:
- Hire professional and dedicated learning coaches for attendees and don’t leave your average event host to take care of the audiences’ well being. This way you can ensure someone has this covered while the presenters focus on delivering their messaging.
- Define your purpose and tell your audience about it, so that everyone gets a chance to feel involved in achieving the common purpose.
- Let your audience feel valued regardless of what their personal opinions are. Let them have a voice, even if you need to encourage disagreement or conflicts. You could even use tech to allow them to voice their thoughts and feedback.
As the event tech boom begins to halt or decline sometime in the future, it will become imperative for event organisers, event agencies, and everyone in the event management ecosystem to think along the lines of making technology just a supportive solution and not the primary focus.
Here’s an important question you need to ask yourself, especially if you want to organise corporate events: Do you really want to spend your budget on an expensive VR experience that merely lasts a couple of minutes or would you rather serve your attendees with tailored catering, personal welcomes, and overall well-being assistance?
When the changes we predict do happen, you will have to try to surprise your audience by taking them away from the intense influence of technology to venues with minimal online connectivity and focus on delivering a rich sensory experience.
All it comes down to is finding the right balance between real and virtual experiences – but when the right time comes, try breaking the norms for a change. If you wanted a key takeaway from this article, this would be it!